Returning to Usk Reservoir

Both Lynnie and I are struggling a bit with our knees at present.  Mine has still not recovered from the twenty miles around the Black Mountains last Thursday and yesterdays trek across rough ground did not help.  When I took the dogs for their early morning walk it was painful, so we decide that our walk today should be on firm ground.

It is only a short drive to our destination, the Usk Reservoir, to do a walk I last did in 2014.  We park in the Forestry Commission car park at Pont ‘ar Wysg on the edge of the Glasfynydd Forest.

We leave the car park and cross the road to follow the waymarked track clockwise around the Usk Reservoir.  The walk needs no description just follow the way markers. We soon cross the River Usk the main source for the reservoir.  The recent dry spell means the river is pretty low.

Since I was last here a number of trees have been felled so you can now see the previously hidden reservoir.

We continue around and then cross the footbridge over the Afon Sgio. One of the features of this walk are the great views across the water to the Brecon Beacons.

Wandering along and watching the red kites, a familiar sight around here, we soon arrive at the dam.  The water level seems very low for this time of year, whilst we all enjoy the dry weather the reality is that we do need some prolonged rainfall to bring the water levels up.

On the far side of the dam there is a new information board showing that construction started on the reservoir in 1950 and was completed in 1955.  The length of the dam is 1575 feet and it has a height of 109 feet.  Behind it the reservoir holds 2,700 gallons of water and covers 290 acres, and the drainage area feeding into to it is 5,880 acres.

From the dam our route follows the road gradually uphill, ignoring the first track on the right we follow the waymarkers at the second track leading to the point where we joined the trail.  Here we turn left and head back to the car.  Our timing is spot on, it starts to drizzle for the last couple of hundred yards so we reach the car without having to put on our waterproofs.

We have covered about five and a half miles, just right for our knees.  Time to get back for a few more painkillers!

We decide to head back via Trecastell, after a mile we come across a lady farmer trying to get an escapee ewe back into a field.  Then around the corner we encounter a flock being moved up the road.  The last time we were in this area I stopped by the side of the road for about twenty minutes as a huge flock of sheep were driven by.  Today’s smaller flock still provide a good photo opportunity for Lynnie.

We arrive back at Barons Court CL in time to feed the dogs before heading out to the Goose and Cuckoo to meet up with our friends Mandy and Stuart.  This village is fortunate to have two good pubs, the meal and service tonight is equally as good as the Red Lion just down the road.  Happy days!

30th April 2017


[To follow our walk you will need Ordnance Survey Outdoor Leisure Map OL12 – Brecon Beacons National Park Western Area]


© Two Dogs and an Awning (2017)


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