The Monnow below Skenfrith

Walk with Cardiff Ramblers on 21st October, 2015 – Jenny, Angie and Alec.

The walk started and finished at Skenfrith Castle car park from which we climbed the steep hill behind The Bell (see the image looking down on the castle from above) before descending down gradually the other side into the plain of the River Monnow.

Skenfrith (2 of 6)

Skenfrith (3 of 6)

Skenfrith (4 of 6)

We crossed the river before walking along the lane and climbing gradually back up on to a grassy hilltop to gain expansive views north, and then descended through woods, a field under some pylons where we had our lunch and a paddock where we encountered some rather lively bullocks.

Skenfrith (5 of 6)

The final stretch took us to an old church and across maize fields and then beside the river to get us back to The Bell.

Skenfrith (6 of 6)

Here we enjoyed a couple of pints of Hereford Pale Ale – or at least I did.

The avoidance walk

This Ramblers walk was announced as “could be muddy” therefore upgraded to a B, Strenuous – well even without the mud (you can see from the photographs just what a wonderful day it was), the walk was still strenuous – even with all the “avoidance” action our leader Vic took.

We didn’t “summit” Waun Fach, stopping for lunch just a short way from the top – in fact we could see it! – thus avoiding the boggy ground; we didn’t descend via Y Grib – but took a clever route that flanked the ridge to descend; and we didn’t do “the sting in the tail” – clamber up Castell Dinas.

For me, still in training mode these were all “good decisions”. I arrived home, tired but with a huge grin on my face as a result of a wonderful walk that nearly took me to the highest point in The Black Mountains. Those final 200m of walking and 20m of elevation will have to wait for another day. However the stats of the walk are still impressive as you can see from the Everytrail track.

The photos may not be as accurately placed on the map as they usually are. I’ve done something wrong with the automatic placement from the GPS data. What … I don’t know :-).

Avoiding the bog, the steep descent and the castle at EveryTrail