Nine of us set out from the Village Hall at 10am, being waved off by our Chairman, Liz, who took great delight in checking that we all had our newly acquired whistles, and parked the cars on Stalling Down. We set off over the Cowbridge By-Pass then up the hill towards the old Roman road, stopping off first to visit the War Memorial erected on behalf of the Glamorgan Yeomanry in 1922 to commemorate the Officers, N.C.O.’s and Men who died in the First World War. We then passed the copse at the top of the hill, known as a site of hanging, and descended to St. Hilary, taking the Llantrithyd road past Coed Hills. A walk through a wheat field followed, then a coffee break before proceeding towards the A48 past the many solar panels owned by Andrew RT Davies AM.
A bit of trimming was necessary around one of the stiles for which purpose Robbie had brought his scythe. Across the A48 and down to a crossroads where we proceeded across a newly cut field towards Ty Cerrig Christmas tree farm and a field with some recently shorn Alpacas which looked decidedly naked without their woolly coats. We joined a narrow road for a short while then through a part of Hensol Forest emerging into an open field close to Wallace Farm, where we sat in the sun for our picnic with lovely views eastwards towards Cardiff and the Garth.
After lunch we set off through a wood without any proper path and re-joined the Welsh St Donats road before heading back westwards towards Stalling Down. Here the footpath signs were most inadequate and did not agree with the map.
We then took the long path below Tair Onen through the wood, necessitating a bit of path clearance on the way, until finally emerging onto a concrete road leading to Tim Vaughan’s Racing Stables. Here we had no option other than to brave our way amongst numerous horses to reach the safety of the far stile. Some good photos were taken by Robbie of our motley crew being herded along by the horses!
The final stretch of the walk was uphill along a bridle path close to the ruins of Llanquian Castle and an old hill fort before emerging onto Pen-y-Lan road towards Aberthin and our cars.
Total distance was 8.5 miles and we reached the cars at 3.30pm