A peaceful night was had, but the sleep wasn’t great quality – still feeling the loss of my mat, and for that reason keen to get the walk done. Midges besieged the tent as I made tea, and attempted to eat a cereal bar under my midge net. I copped for quite a lot of bites nevertheless.
Day 7: Cerrig y Tan to Abertridwr – 28.63km, 682m ascent / 846m descent
As I set off, despite the hard end to the day before, I was still reasonably pleased with progress, feeling that I’d now broken the back of this walk. An easier day was due, but I wasn’t going to get it. With 15km to Llangadfan and 12km from there to the campsite, it would still be a pretty hefty day. Even so I was feeling positive, with the probability of actually finding shops/cafes open in the places I’d be passing through.
I dropped down through the forest to be met with a further descent through thistly fields to reach a minor road. I even quite enjoyed the road section – simply, uncomplicated walking at a time of day before feet start hurting.
At Dolwen there could theorectically be a diversion, as there is sometimes when the nearby ford is overwhelmed, but that was never likely in current conditions. It was a bit of a dull trudge over the hill after it (Pen Coed) though, followed by fields to get me to Llangadfan. My feet were pretty damp by now due to all the early morning wetness on the vegetation.
Almost opposite where the path emerged into Llangadfan, lay Cwpan Pinc – a cafe. Nirvana. Sausage egg and chips and a latte went down my neck, and I also took a couple of bottles of flavoured water to get me through the afternoon.
As I sat there studying the map, I could see about half of the remaining distance was roads or forestry tracks, making for, supposedly, easy walking. I’d reckoned without my already wet feet though.
I turned off the road at Blowty Farm to be met by a succession of 7 or 8 traditional style stiles in varying states of disrepair or strangulation by scratchy, thorny vegetation. Great.
I survived the encounter and met a walker just after this, and he mentioned that “Blowty” hadn’t been too keen on Glyndŵr’s Way heading through his land. Surprise surprise. It showed.
But soon the forestry tracks begun and I had high hopes of these. In reality though my wet-wrinkled feet on stony hard surfaces was not a good combination, and I started to suffer. I needed to stop for 20 minutes to give everything an airing and go for the second sock change of the day. A couple of wrong turns just added to the misery. I pretty much limped down out of the forest to the last few country lanes and fields to get me in sight of Lake Vyrnwy.
Another km or so to the campsite, but even better the shop was still open, and so I took advantage. At the campsite I found my riverside pitch nestled between the only two other occupied pitches – why they couldn’t spread us out I have no idea. I had to spend the evening listening to the inane chat from one set of neighbours.
The site itself was basic, which was unsurprising in its first year of opening. The “facilities” consisted of two portaloos, and two draining boards with buckets underneath. There were no showers, which I really could have done with.
Just two more days to go, and I’d booked a camp site for the next night. Wild camping options were becoming even thinner on the ground, and the desire to just get the walk done was increasing with each day that passed.