Wednesday, 14 September 2011

Day 3: Porthmadog to Dolgellau

Day 3, Monday 5 September: Porthmadog to Dolgellau (33 miles, 640 m ascent)

An early visit to KK cycles in Porthmadog allowed the now misaligned derailleur on John’s bike to be fixed (diolch yn fawr, Dai, am helpu hwntwr mewn angen!). We then set off along the Cob on the Lon Ardudwy cycle path towards Penrhyndeudraeth into more rain. We had been advised to avoid the Sustrans route through Eisingrug because last winter’s weather had badly damaged the road and the surface would have been unsuitable for our hybrid bikes. We therefore followed the A496 to Harlech into a strong headwind.

A break for lunch at Harlech, following a short but very steep cycle up to the town centre, allowed us to take in the wonderful views of Bae Ceredigion and Pen Llลทn. Our route then followed a number of steep climbs into hills and open moorland to the east of the coast road, again rewarded with magnificent scenery. After returning for a few miles along the A496 we descended into Y Bermo where, to celebrate the fact that the rain had eased, we had a paddle in the sea!

The final part of our journey that day took us over the spectacular Barmouth Bridge, along the Mawddach Trail to Penmaenpool and eventually into Dolgellau, by which time it was of course raining again! After a warming cup of tea in Siop Coffi TH, we booked in and stayed the night at The Meirionnydd in Dolgellau and ate and slept well in preparation for what we expected to be the hardest day’s cycling of the week.

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