Wednesday, 10 March 2010

Monday's walk - Part II

View along the Towy Valley - Paxton's Tower (top of hill, leftish) and Dryslwyn Castle (middle).

I was flattered when these sheep came hurtling towards me, bleating, and I thought I must look like a Person Who Is Nice To Sheep. Then they raced past - they had noticed the REAL farmer approaching in his pick-up with their feed!

The steps up through the woods.

This tree conveys movement - looks like it is late for a party and is running, dragging its skirts behind it!

Above and below - there is something so beautiful about trees in winter. The parkland contains many ancient specimens - even these are several hundred years old and as I walked back across the park I noticed that the biggest were all recorded and had little metal tags stapled to their trunks.

There are many bats to be found in Carmarthenshire. They happily fly into our house should be we negligent enough to leave a window open at dusk. This chart shows some of the species that have been recorded.

Isn't this lovely? I went and sat for a while on the bench you can just see in the picture.

A little of the history of the castle.

As you can see, it was built on an almost impregnable spot - well, from this side anyway! It's nearly a sheer drop to the river valley below.

The Towy Valley looks very bleached by the winter weather, but the green will soon return.

Looking mostly northwards between the towers.

This is definitely a candidate for the double-click, as it's the only way you will see the deer. Yup - those specks grazing in the Deer Park are . . . deer. Fallow Deer. A couple of years ago, my daughter (eldest) and I were involved in an Archaeological Dig in this Deer Park, but our spot sadly isn't in sight in this picture.

I was trying to show the deep rock-cut ditch beside the castle wall - NOT a moat, as they would never have gotten water up this high! As I contemplated it, I was thinking of the weeks and months of work excavating something like this must have taken. I think I shall stop complaining about my aching back just from gardening!

Walking back across the fields of the parkland towards Llandyfeisant Church.


  1. I love bats, I love their flitting and swooping in the evening skies. It's a shame a lot of people are scared of them. Do you have protected species?

  2. My that is some walk and how absolutely adorable!!
    Such glorious countryside and I would adore sitting on that bench just drinking in the breathtaking views......
    So many wonderful places and I marvelled at the steps into the wood.
    It was lovely to see the Fallow deer and of course the sheep and lambs... have not seen any lambs around this part of the woods yet (Warwickshire) guess there must be some, its just I haven't being looking properly!! lol!!
    How wonderful that you and your daughter took part in an Archaeological Dig I have always wanted to do something like that... its on my list of things to do somewhere down the line.
    I adore the Time Team programme and can get quite excited about some of their finds..... woe betide anyone who disturbs me whilst I am watching that!!
    We have a lot of bat activity around these parts but wouldn't relish the thought of finding any swooping around in the house... how do you cope with that when one of them gets into your house... I would be out of the room a flash!
    Thank you so much for allowing us to accompany you on that glorious walk, its been so enjoyable!!
    Love Jane xxx

  3. Jane - with the bat-in-the-house it's just a case of opening the window and waiting until it goes out . . . Mind you, for some reason eldest daughter ALWAYS used to have them swooping round in her room and she has a "thing" about bats.

    The Digs are usually fairly boring and a lot of hard work - although I was thrilled to bits when I found half a glass bead (Iron Age/early Roman period) which was dark blue glass with white spirals. Magic.

    The lambs were quite chunky so probably January lambs for the just-after-Easter market. I've seen some just before Christmas before now, on a farm up near Brechfa.

    Kath - these days bats are all protected in that you can't do any work on a house if you think you have bats in residence, etc. Around our house we have Pipistrelles and Long-Eared type bats. Having farm buildings just across the way means they have local homes!

  4. beautiful scenic walks--envy that you have so many places to roam--

  5. Such amazing scenes just for a walk! I loved it. I always double click and get as close to the beauty as possible. You should definitely enlarge and frame "The steps up through the woods"! Thanks for sharing...

  6. Glad you all enjoyed the walk with me. It was a lovely day and for once, I took my time and sat down and just took in the view a few times along the way.

  7. Oh thankyou for this - this part of the Towy valley has captivated me for years now. And to see it in its bare-bones winter colours is magic. It's an area I am writing about for an article, in a sympathetic way, and am so grateful for the perspective of someone who lives on the spot.

  8. I had to read this at great speed and save the other walks for another visit to the library's computer room. It is dark out and I fear that my "coach" will turn into a stuck truck as I try to maneuver back into the muddy drive at the cabin. The water tank is on board and I can't see around it to back up, nor am I clever with mirrors.
    Your other posts will give me incentive to get back here soon.

  9. WSC - I know the area well - we've lived here 22 years now. I know a lot about its history, about the landscape, and in my little patch, the people who lived there at the time of the 1881 census. Sometimes that seems more real to me than the present day. The view from the top of Dryslwyn Castle is THE one on a sunny day - the meanders of the Towy seen from there are amazing.

    MM - Hope you backed out safely from the library! I prefer to look over my shoulder too - though I suspect that is what gives me a wry neck and back much of the time! The post will still be there when you move to your lovely new home . . .

    it's me - I will have to do a snoop and see where you live and why you're so envious.

    SH - I fear I take much of this beauty just a little for granted as it is so familiar, and sometimes it does me good to sit down and REALLY look at it.

  10. I suppose you are just fit and lean after all the walking you've done since I've known you! I wouldn't hesitate for a moment if I lived in such a gorgeous environment. You're truly blessed. I think when our little forum shut down it was just the beginning of my "changing gears" in my approach to the internet. I'm now trying to sort out just what I want to do. Back to blogging, for sure.
    But I miss you, my old friend, and knowing what's going on in your everyday life. That's what the forum was all about for me.
    I hope that all is well with 'himself' and the girls. Would love to have news of your move. is is still a go?