A dog friendly walk from DogPeople

A dog-friendly walk from DogPeople
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Llanarmon Circular (9 medium)

Hamish was staying at The Hand (dog friendly pub / place to eat). There is car parking here for patrons (and the food is good!) - grid reference SJ 1570 3280.

Leave the car park along the B road towards Chirk. Cross the bridge over the River Ceiriog (note toilets on right hand side - RHS - just before bridge if you need them). As road bends hard right KEEP AHEAD steeply uphill on metalled lane marked by a blue finger post depicting a walker, cyclist and horse rider. Follow lane uphill through bends and past a farm and house. KEEP AHEAD when metalling ceases beyond a house and follow track. The track gets rougher ? note house away to the right some distance further on.

KEEP AHEAD - there are two tracks near the house - keep to the left hand, more rutted track. There are trees on the RHS for some distance. A clearing part way along allows views over the valley to your RHS and it is tempting to walk across the clearing to get a better view - it is worth it - but the views get even better further on. KEEP AHEAD through two metal gates (there was a sign on the first gate warning of 'right to roam' closures on specified winter dates - presumably because of shooting).

After passing through the second gate TURN DIAGONALLY LEFT more or less along the fence line (keeping it on your left hand side - LHS). Note footpath arrow marker on the gate post pointing to the route. The path is indistinct for much of the way and boggy in parts - keep within 10 to 20 metres of the fence and you won't have too much of a problem.

KEEP AHEAD over a stile (Hamish had to be lifted over the fence but many more agile dogs could jump). After about 20 metres you cross a track - the footpath goes more or less ahead from the stile. There is a choice of route here - you can follow the path ahead (across the track) to reach a bridleway then turn left (see ## below having turned left on the bridleway) but we TURNED LEFT along the track aiming for the higher ground (this is 'right to roam' territory). Follow the track until it bends hard left towards a gate. Look to the right of the track and note a standing stone (a boundary stone). TURN RIGHT through the heather to pass the stone. KEEP AHEAD following a line from the gate and through the stone. Cross the heather and, as you start to descend, look ahead for a marker post (and another boundary stone about 100 metres to its right). Aim for the marker. When you reach it TURN LEFT as indicated by the blue arrow marker (you are now on the bridleway and, having turned left, will be on the route from ## above).

The path was mostly clear - but the heather on it had been cut when we walked. The route goes to the left of a fairly new plantation of trees towards a more mature wood some way off. The path is on the LHS of a valley further on - and a number of single deciduous trees are close to it (helping mark the route). Cross a stream (quite boggy when we walked despite the frost). Climb a little after the stream and look ahead for a gate near the wood. Aim for the gate - go through (as indicated by blue arrow marker) and go ahead to reach a forest track.

TURN LEFT on the track and follow it to a hard right hand bend. KEEP AHEAD (i.e. turn left off the main track) and follow another track slightly downhill. At a fork in the track, KEEP AHEAD on the left hand and lower path (RH path goes uphill). Follow path to a gate with a stile on its left hand side. The gate was locked when we walked so Hamish was lifted over the stile.

KEEP AHEAD across a steam and open area. As the track bears right, KEEP AHEAD on a slightly less obvious path. After 80 metres or so TURN LEFT at a footpath marker post aiming for a stile a short way off.

Cross stile (Hamish was lifted over the fence). Cross a stream then climb the hill. The path is a little indistinct and boggy in places - look for a marker post part way up the hill (near the bottom of the heather when we walked). KEEP AHEAD in the direction indicated by the arrow marker on the post. KEEP AHEAD as indicated by next marker post near the top of the hill - cross a wide rough grassed area then a patch of heather. After the heather notice a couple of small fenced areas off to the right and bear very slightly left of ahead aiming towards the main valley in the middle distance (just east of south). Look for a marker post some distance away as you walk. Pass the post and keep going in the same direction to the next post. After passing the post the path starts to descend the RHS of a valley and becomes much broader and clearer.

KEEP AHEAD through a gate (marker on left hand post) then another gate besides a stile. KEEP AHEAD downhill through a farm, then over a bridge to reach a metalled lane. TURN LEFT on the lane and follow it - a couple of miles or so - back to Llanarmon. Pass a farm and public 'phone box and cross a bridge en-route.

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