Posted by: Ross Gardner | October 4, 2017

To the Hills

An exchange of the very fine coast of the Gower Peninsula for the equally superlative scenery of Pembrokeshire was a swap we were very happy to make……

Great Glasshouse 2 (scaled)

We were, though, only too pleased to divert to the excellent Botanic Garden of Wales on the way. It has many things that make it a worthwhile destination, among them the impressive Great Glasshouse……


…… but coming face to face in broad daylight with a wild Otter was, to say the very least, completely unexpected. I grabbed this shot whilst visitors walked behind me along the main path having just emerged from the gate house. Otters are known to frequent the lakes of the Garden, but to encounter one under these circumstances was….. well, a bit bonkers.

Cliifs near Manorbier (scaled)

On to Pembrokeshire and its own wonders. These curiously angular-textured cliffs stood over the waves a short walk from our camp for a few days at Manorbier.

Chough 5 (scaled)

The coastal cliffs of Pembrokeshire are stronghold for the Chough, the scarcest of the UK’s seven species of crow.

Rural scene - Stackpole (scaled)

The Stackpole estate is renowned for including some South Pembrokeshire’s most dramatic coastline. The varied landscapes that extend inland from the cliffs make for decidedly picturesque countryside.

Nant Egnant valley (scaled)

Heading north and the hills beckoned. Walking from the village of Ffair Rhos there is to be found wonderfully rugged and satisfyingly remote country. This is the ‘other’ Wales, outside of the National Parks and somewhat outside of the tourism-consciousness. It is a place of long walks and Red Kites.

Cwm Idwal (scaled)

Northward still and the lure of stunning mountain country of Snowdonia was always going to be to strong. We took a steep trail up from Lynn Ogwen from where this shot of the distant Cwm Idwal was taken.

Ffynnon Lloer 2 (scaled)

At the top of the trail the lonely tranquillity of Ffynnon Lloer was our reward.

Horseshoe Pass 4 (scaled)

We made to leave Wales with a certain reluctance and were well pleased not to have done so without experiencing the scenic splendour of Horseshoe Pass, near Lllangollen, as we went.

Toad on the doorstep 2 (scaled)

And seeing as there has been something of a low creature count with this set of Big Trip images, here’s a sizeable and rather excellent Toad (Bufo bufo) that surprised me outside the ablution block at our campsite in Felin Uchaf.


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