Day 106: Aberdaron to Towyn
Distance: 18.15 miles
Ascent: 4717 feet
Weather: Very Strong WInds & Rain Morning, Lighter in Afternoon
Accommodation: Camping Towyn Farm (Kindly COmplimentary)
Well the forecast was clearly not wrong, as when I woke up the windows were rattling and you could hear the wind pounding against them. After a lovely 2 nights in The Ship Hotel, it was hard to force myself to leave a lovely warm place to go out into quite horrific conditions. It was forecast to be very strong winds and heavy rain until lunchtime and then it would hopefully begin to lighten off.
As I climbed out of Aberdaron and up onto the cliffs it did not take long to become exposed to the wind/rain, and what a wind. It started as a head and cross wind as I headed SW for the first part and I was definitely ‘drunk’ walking, essentially being blown one way, and then overcompensating so as the wind lightened I ended up going the other way, so I essentially slalomed my way along the path.
Despite the wind I felt I was making good time, though the walking was very tiring with the surprising amount of ascents, the muddy conditions and the very strong wind. There was one climb that took me up a series of concrete steps, to the very top of Myndd Mawy where I was completely exposed and saw two little huts approaching that I hoped I would be able to use to shelter for a few minutes. Unfortunately, they were locked, I believe they are RSPB huts. It is a shame with huts like these that they can’t be left open as they are extremely useful for walkers, though I suppose idiots would graffiti the inside etc. so they have to shut them. The view was stunning from up here.
From this high point the path descended till I was a little protected from the wind and also the path was wider making for easier walking and the next couple of miles were quick to Whistling Sands. There was a little remote coastal café marked on the map at this point that I really hoped was open for some respite from the elements. As I approached, from above I could not tell whether it was open (in fact from this direction looked like a bomb shelter) so I headed down the little lane to the beach. On the way down there were a couple of cars, and a surfboard that had been snapped that morning, as I could see the surfers. I was so happy when I arrived, and the café was open. I had a tea and some food and started to feel like normal again.
On leaving the café the rain had pretty much stopped, and the wind had reduced though still fairly strong. As it was high tide, and also a large wind surge I could not walk along the beach and see if the sand actually whistled (apparently it does) but headed back onto the cliffs. The paths got steadily narrower and in places very muddy/slippy meaning though the weather had improved the going was still tough.
Though it was scenic there was not much of note until the beach at Traeth Penllech, where the path dropped right down to the beach for a short while, before heading back onto the cliffs. From here I think it flatters the route to describe it as a path, especially after the interesting tin huts at Porth Lydan. The ‘path’ is literally, follow whatever sheep trail you can, and at times the ground has slipped away making for interesting routes around.
Finally pretty exhausted I arrived at Towyn Farm where they had kindly let me pitch for free on their site for the night. I headed straight for the far corner where the bank was higher than my tent and there was a caravan on the other side hopefully protecting me from the worst of the winds.
As expected there was no signal, so I walked the 500m or so up the hill to Tudweiliog, where the pub had just about good enough Wi-fi to enable me to write the diary and check tomorrows route. Hopefully my tent hasn’t blown away when I return!
So a quite brutal though fairly short day but I am now exhausted.