Visiting Snowdonia

Cader Idris from Foel Caerynwch

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Llanfairfechan Historical Trail

Llanfairfechan Historical Trail - 1 March 2018


Llanfairfechan Historical Trail
Alan Pritchard

Grade: Moderate

Distance: 7 Km / 4.5 Miles

Time: 4 hours

Terrain: Heath and Moorland


A circular walk from the top of Llanfairfechan town, which crosses the 1000-foot, 304m contour line to take you to the foot of the Carneddau range of mountains. Explore a landscape rich in archaeological sites, dating from the Stone Age onwards.

You will be traversing a ffridd, which is rough farmland used for grazing, mainly sheep, but cattle and Welsh mountain ponies are sometimes seen. It is enclosed land usually found between lowland pastures and open mountain land. After the last metal kissing gate, you will be crossing common land. Since the introduction of sheep on a large scale two centuries ago, the moorland has changed from cattle pastures to the close-cropped grass, gorse, bracken, bilberry and heather we know today. Very often, Welsh mountain ponies can be seen on this moorland. They are left to run wild on the hills, and once a year they are rounded up.

Looking towards the sea you can enjoy magnificent views over the valley to the coast and the Menai Straits. At low tide the Lavan sands stretch across towards Anglesey. These sands are famous for their marine and bird life. Before the construction of the Menai Bridge travellers journeyed over these sands towards Anglesey completing the crossing by boat. On clear days, Parys and Holyhead Mountain are visible.

Look out for an incised stone near the wooden fingerpost; it bears a design consisting of three concentric squares, the centre of each of the sides being cut at right angles by a short line. It has been suggested that this could be a Nine Men’s Morris board – a board game, using stones and counters played by the drovers.

Alan Pritchard (Area Warden)