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The good weather has stayed with us into October: warm and humid, with plenty of sunshine.  So, waking up to blue skies on Sunday morning, we felt one of our favourite walks calling – along the spine of the Clwydian hills, following the Offa’s Dyke path.

I wrote in September 2012 about the history and landscape of this short walk – from the Moel y Parc TV, radio and mobile phone mast to the parking place on the lane to Nannerch – so here I’ll just let the photos from the walk speak for themselves.

We set off, plucky Cavalier by our side…

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Soon, terrific views in all directions open up before us…

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To the north, across Flintshire, the Dee and the Wirral, we can make out the Liverpool waterfront and the Anglican cathedral….

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While across the Mersey bay we can see clear across to the coastline from Crosby to Southport…

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It’s busy up here, with walkers, cyclists, and lots of dogs…

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Moel Famau lies ahead, but we’re not going that far today…

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The waymarker points onwards, past a bright bank of gorse to a stand of conifers where golden, autumnal grasses toss and shimmer in the breeze…

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Soon we are retracing our steps, past the gorsey bank, back over the great earthworks of Penycloddiau hill fort, and down the track towards Afonwen…

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This has been a good autumn for Rowan berries…

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And berries of all kinds – hips…

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elderberries…

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and here and there, some late blackberries on the brambles still…

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The Guardian’s Plantwatch notes a week or so ago referred to this year being:

A mast year, a phenomenon of nature when trees are weighed down with an astonishing crop of nuts. The mast itself is the nut of beech trees, but a mast year includes all the other nuts of woodland trees – acorns, sweet chestnuts, conkers, hazel, ash, maple, lime and many others. […]  Berries have also appeared in a bonanza season that should make for good foraging. There are heaps of big blackberries, elderberries, bilberries, sloes, rowan berries and others and this could be thanks to the cold winter, a wet spring and a warm, dry summer, which has helped stimulate flowering and produce plenty of fruits.

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It’s October, but we found this Red Admiral still soaking up the warmth of the sun…

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See also

4 thoughts on “A favourite walk in the Clwydian hills

    1. Cheers, Kevin, and – yes- we’ve got the Rogers book. After yesterdays walk we hatched a mad sort of plan to walk the entire Offa’s Dyke path from Prestatyn to Chepstow. Could last us most of the rest of our allotted time!

      1. Some mates completed the south to north version last year. Not for us, I think; we prefer more random forays – although that has seen us do a huge extent of the path over the years. I sometimes get quite tearful along the northern stretches; I’m taken back to my late big brother’s introduction of Wales to my younger walking and cycling self in the mid 50s when the area was an accessible favourite. To crank up the nostalgia I enjoy dipping in to my battered copies of ‘Wild Wales’ and ‘the Drovers’ Roads of Wales’ (bought in Philip Son and Nephew, of course!).

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