Graig Llanishen walk
A wintery walk along a ridge overlooking north Cardiff.
(Photos © urban75, Christmas Day, 2006)
With a hangover still biting hard from a long night in the Deri pub in Rhiwbina, I set off in the fog from Thornhill for a delightful walk across a deserted Craig Llanishen to Cefn Onn and back.
It's a pretty easy walk - around 4 miles - once you've puffed up up Caerphilly Road and the views from the ridge are fantastic (well, they are if there isn't a ton of much fog about!).
Looking back along Caerphilly Road (A469), with the turn off to Lisvane to the left. This used to be a very quiet country lane up until the 1980s.
Looking west at the Wenallt aerial mast.
Close to the aerial is a two storey, semi-sunk bunker built for the Royal Artillery as part of the ROTOR radar and air-defence network.
Built in 1951 during the Cold War, the building served as the Anti-Aircraft Operations Room for the Cardiff and Newport Air Defence Zone.
Walking up Caerphilly Road, which rises to 250m up Thornhill and then climbs up around Caerphilly mountain. It's a tough hill to cycle up!
When I was a kid, there used to be a mass stampede from north Cardiff up Caerphilly Mountain to the Traveller's Rest pub which stayed open an extra half hour on weekends (11pm as opposed to 10.30 in Cardiff).
Turning east at the pub, you can pick up the footpath by walking throught the car park.
Looking north from Graig Llanishen at the main A469 below.
Remains of Castell Morgraig, a 13th century ruin with an enigmatic history.
Mossy rocks on Graig Llanishen.
Lots of trees along the route hadn't survived the winter gales.
Looking south towards Cardiff from the ridge of Graig Llanishen.
Lovely, lovely sheep!
Wintery scene on Graig Llanishen. Throughout the entire walk, I didn't see a single soul. Fantastic!
Although the footpath route is now signposted, some of the trees used as posts hadn't lasted the winter.
Ventilation shaft for the Caerphilly railway tunnel underneath.
Detail from one of the five air vents needed to bring fresh air into the mile-long, single bore, double track tunnel below.
View of the disused Cefn Onn halt, which closed in 1986.
Half a mile south down the line is Lisvane and Thornhill station, which replaced Cefn Onn, being sited more conveniently to new housing developments in Lisvane.