Tuesday, 13 November 2012

Tumble to Sandy Water Park & Back

I had arranged with Paul, my neighbour to cycle the Tumble Bike Trail and today was it.  Apparently Angela his wife, preferred to stay home and carry out some domestics!

We took the car to Tumble and set off on the trail (bike route 47) heading for Llanelli.


This was Paul's first ride on the trail. I have mentioned this route before but it's always worth doing as it is a first class trail, tarmac and traffic free. having said that weekends will see plenty of walkers with or without dogs, runners and cyclists so care is needed.

Today, Tuesday was less busy but we saw a selection of all those mentioned above.

We met one couple on a tandem and had a long chat with them about the advantages of tandem biking. the only down side seemed to be getting it onto a car.  They had even transported it to the USA some years ago.  (now thinking of trying one with Mrs Bob perched on the back).

A coffee break was had near Cynheidre and then on.

Our next stop was to chat with a couple of Sustrans workers who were clearing a drainway.  This week I had applied to be a Sustrans volunteer and it seems the "gaffer" of these two would be the chap I may be helping in due course.

Autumn colours were still in evidence but judging by the covering of leaves on the trail it won't last for long!

The Swiss Valley reservoirs were spotted with the overflow working well. We also met with a couple of spotted pigs who seemed keen for a chat or probably free food.  They were out of luck.

We left the trail at Sandy Water Park and had another coffee/cake break.  The swans soon gave up begging when it became clear there was nothing on offer.

Refreshed we returned to the trail and cycled back the way we came. The route is now uphill but nothing too arduous.

Another good day out .

Thursday, 8 November 2012

Cwmtawe Trail (Route 43)

As I had to be in Llwynhendy first thing to take my grandson to school I thought it would be an idea to take the bike and as well as visiting Tredz, Halfords and Go Outdoors on the Llansamlet Trading Estate, go for a bike ride on Route 43 also shown as the Cwm Tawe Cycleway


The ride took me to Ystalyfera alongside the Afon Tywi and the Swansea Canal.  I can wholly recommend this route as it is all off road with excellent surfaces on which to ride.  There is plenty of interest including industrial history along the route.  The autumn colours were still on show.

Not far from Llansamlet I came across Garth Farm Wood which was advertising for volunteers.

Garth Farm Wood

Along the Swansea Canal were a number of old locks and an appeal from the Swansea Canal Society.

At Clydach there is a Heritage Centre, but it is only open on Saturdays, but there were some interesting things to photograph.

One of the history panels tells the story of a mine disaster in the 1800's which claimed many lives including one boy of 14! Sad as this was it was a long time ago and hard to feel part of it.

However just a short way on is a memorial to the Gleision disaster of 2011.  This memorial was clearly erected by the close friends of those who died and it made for some sad reading and brings home to you the danger of this occupation which continues in these modern times.

As I approached Ystalyfera the mountains came into view and the route takes you between Mynydd Allt Y Grug and Darren Fach leading to Varteg Hill.  Beyond are the Brecon Beacons.

I had lunch here and then turned back to Llansamlet. An excellent day of cycling.

Sunday, 4 November 2012

Tumble to Cross Hands and back

Out of the blue Mrs Bob suggested a short bike ride on the Tumble trail.

Didn't take me long to load the bikes up and then wait as Mrs Bob layered up!

We met quite a few dog walkers and other bike riders, some of whom I expect had travelled up from Llanelli.


The trees were still in their autumn colours although judging by the path there cannot be a lot more leaves to fall.

Nearing Cefneithin rugby ground I could see the lights on and we saw two young teams under training.  Good to see some parents and voluntary coaches taking an interest in the young ones.

At the Cross Hands end of the trail we turned around and headed back to the car, just in time to beat the rain which for the rest of the day hammered down.