Old Railway - 6 miles
6 miles extending the Maes Garmon walk to an interesting destination. Roads, tracks, fields, rough woodland and some overgrown stiles. One very steep and tricky section (which can be avoided). To download a full description select HERE
Follow the Maes Garmon walk to join the Gwernaffield road, turn right and first left down Ffordd y Bryn. Take footpath down lane after Bryn Cottage (first house on right)
Just before house at end of lane a stile and footpath on right takes you into Benllan woodland.
Follow this path down for about 200 yds and look for a signed footpath to the left. The path is relatively narrow and at right angles to the track you have walked down, it does not seem to be the obvious choice at first, but do not be tempted to follow the forestry tracks to left before this. Scramble your way down this narrow path ducking under the fallen branches.
Look to cross a bridge with a single side of scaffold.
Head half-right towards a further red bridge taking time to enjoy the banks of the River Alyn. Cross the red bridge. You should be able to see an old locomotives on the old railway embankment dead ahead. Walk towards this looking to cross a small stile in the fencing.
Up onto the railway. Explore the old engine and the points system to the right. (Do not be tempted to follow railway much further: to the right is eventually a disappointing dead end; to the left comes out awkwardly at Rhydymwyn.)
Retrace steps back across flood plain and red bridge. You now have a choice.
The harder route is, instead of using the single-sided scaffold bridge to follow the same field boundary 100 yards to the right to reach another footpath sign and cross a more substantial, double sided scaffold bridge. (This next section is steep and difficult.) Track up and right to join a narrow but definite path which runs about 30 yards up from and generally parallel to the field boundary. Follow this through the woodland to a fenced off Danger Area. Turn left following the tall green fence. Continue upwards and slightly to right through very steep woodland. Emerge at a stile (with a warning message about cows with calves). Over stile, turn right and then up across field between bungalow and power pylon. Continue in same direction to a stile in far apex corner of field to rejoin Ffordd y Bryn at a “T” junction.
The easier route is, after crossing the red bridge, to retrace your steps across the single scaffold bridge back to Bryn Cottage on Ffordd y Bryn. Turn right here and continue along Fford y Bryn until you arrive at this same “T” junction just after passing Benllan Bach..
Crossing over, or if you took the easier route, turning left off, Ffordd y Bryn takes you on the road to Gwernaffield.
If you still have the appetite for more stiles and fields leave it at a footpath to left after approx 50 yards. (Otherwise continue on to Gwernaffield and rejoin the Maes Garrmon walk at its point.)
Along this farm track and then slight right towards some derelict buildings where cattle gather. With buildings on your left continue towards a gap in the hedge. Do not go through the gap, instead turn sharp right. The next stile can be seen at the top of the next rise to the right.
Over this stile and then look at the line of power cables running across the next field. Follow these keeping to their left to walk diagonally across the field. This is the best way to locate the next stile which is midway along the hedge boundary and is often overgrown.
Once over this stile, continue to follow the power cables to the pole at the upper left hand corner of the next field. Here is the next stile which again is often overgrown and is quite awkward to climb up to.
Over this stile and now leave the line of the power cables. Turn sharp left to follow the hedge boundary towards another stile.
Over this stile and then bear right through a gap between two lines of hedges. Head for the white/grey farm buildings to your right which are on the main road.
The stile is just down from these farm buildings. Take care as it is a bit rickety and there is a steepish drop down steps on the other side down to the main road.
Turn right here, you are now midway between points and back on the Maes Garmon walk so continue on road to Gwernaffield .