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Tuesday 16th. June dawned bright and sunny so I set off towards Dolgellau. The start of the precipice walk is at Coed y Groes, on the narrow road between Dolgellau and Llanfachreth.

The walk lies on the Nannau Estate which grants permission for use of the footpaths.

There has been a house at Nannau since the 12th. century, when the estate was  owned by Cadwgan, Prince of Powys. The original building was burned down in 1404  after trouble between the owner, the 8th. Earl of Nannau and his cousin Owain Glyndwr.

The house wasn’t rebuilt until 1693. The Nannau family (who became the Nanney’s), still lived on the estate, but were having financial problems. Hugh Nanney was imprisoned for trying to sort out his financial prblems by cutting down 10,000 Oak trees.

When the male line died out the female line, which had married into the powerful and influential Vaughan family, took over and replanted many of the trees. In 1796 they built the grand mansion that stands today.

The early part of the walk crosses woodland and farm pasture. Nannau Hall stands to the south east, and you can glimpse it through the trees as you start the walk.

Nannau Hall.

Nannau Hall.

As the path starts the slight ascent up around Foel Cymwch you get your first sight of Llyn Cymwch in a hollow surrounded by woodland.

Llyn Cymwch from the north.

Llyn Cymwch from the north.

As the path ascends and rounds Foel Cymwch spectacular views open up. The first photo is the view to the east; the lush foothills and pasture land of this part of Wales. The second photo is the view across Coed Dôl-y-clochydd towards the peaks of Snowdonia.

Looking north east from the side of Foel Cymwch.

Looking north east from the side of Foel Cymwch.

Looking over CoedDol-y-clochydd.

Looking over Coed Dol-y-clochydd.

I could have spent hours sat here. The views in any direction were stunning and it was so peaceful. All I could hear as I sat looking out over the wonderful landscape was bird song, the occasional sheep and the breeze rustling through the bracken. The sun was bright and warm and it was a shame that I had to move, but the precipice was just around the corner.

The narrow path winds it’s way along a terrace on the slope of Moel Cymwch with the Mawddach valley down below. The path is quite rocky in places so good boots are definitely a good idea.

The precipice footpath.

The precipice footpath.

The Mawddach valley from the precipice footpath.

The Mawddach valley from the precipice footpath.

The precipice footpath.

The precipice footpath.

The precipice path itself  is just over a mile, with the occasional twist and turn to add interest. As you reach the southern end, below Foel Faner, more beautiful scenery opens up in front of you.

Straight in front of you Afon Mawddach meanders through the plain of Dolgellau, on through sand banks before reaching the sea. Just to the left are the northern cliffs of the Cadair Idris mountains.

Once again this is a place just to sit and take in the views and the peace.

Afon Mawddach meanders to it's estuary.

Afon Mawddach meanders to it's estuary.

The northern cliffs of the Cadair Idris mountains.

The northern cliffs of the Cadair Idris mountains.

It’s a shame, but once again I have to move on. Now the path turns to the left and descends to the shores of Llyn Cymwth. The scene is still peaceful, with just a few fishermen on the banks of the lake. The walk back to the car park is along the tree lined banks of this lovely little lake.

Llyn Cylmwch from the southern end.

Llyn Cylmwch from the southern end.


Fishermen line the banks of Llyn Cylmwch

Fishermen line the banks of Llyn Cylmwch

Fishing on Llyn Cymwch

Fishing on Llyn Cymwch

The precipice walk starts and ends at Coed y Groes. It’s only about a  4 mile walk so you can have an afternoon stroll or make a day of it. There are a couple of picnic tables at the car park, but there are plenty of places to sit on the way round. Whichever you prefer, the precipice walk is definitely worth a visit.


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