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Glyndyfrdwy to Rhewl

Follow winding lanes uphill, as the path crosses the lower slopes of the Llantysilio Mountains to emerge at an old drovers’ inn at Rhewl.

Distance: 5 km/3 miles
Difficulty: Difficult (longer with some hills)

The hard, underlying rock of the Llantysilio Mountains was created during the Silurian period, some 45 million years ago. Today, the mosaic of purple heather, emerald green bilberries and gorse of the upper moorland slopes are managed for wildlife. Rare moorland birds found on the mountain include curlew, golden plover, ring ouzel, merlin, and the elusive black grouse.

The Sun Inn at Rhewl is a 14th-century drovers’ inn. For centuries, drovers herded cattle and sheep across the hills to the lowland markets of England. Drovers’ roads developed, avoiding towns and toll roads. Inns along these remote routes provided welcome shelter and food for the drovers overnight, with secure pens alongside for their animals.

Look Out For … Large parts of the Llantysilio Mountains are recognised as a Site of Special Scientific Interest (or SSSI) for their valuable moorland. A key species here is the increasingly rare black grouse whose preferred habitat is the margin between open moor and forestry. In early spring the black plumaged males display to the smaller, brown females at traditional sites called ‘leks’..