The Modern Antiquarian. Stone Circles, Ancient Sites, Neolithic Monuments, Ancient Monuments, Prehistoric Sites, Megalithic MysteriesThe Modern Antiquarian

Moel ty Uchaf

Stone Circle

Fieldnotes

Yesterday we visited Moel ty Uchaf and although we were expecting something much bigger we were not dissapointed this is truly a wonderful place the views from this circle just blow you away what I particulary noticed about this place as opposed to many other circles I have visited is the complete tranquility here, there are no major roads nearby and no motorways buzzing in the background fantastic.

We decided to take the trusty kite out today and fly it from the top of the hill. Whilst flying the kite we noticed some anomolies at the bottom of the hill in the opposite direction to which we'd walked up the hill (see my photos). A jumble of huge stones, more boulders, a peculiar slate arrangement and the remains of a cairn similliar to the size of glassonby in Cumbria, but this one was made up almost entirely of white quartz! The grass is so thick here it must hide so many secrets and all round the circle you can find stones hidden under the turf if you look hard enough theres so much to see here if you just look. Also on the track on the way up, if you look in the field before the first farmhouse, I'm sure there're the remains of another stone circle(?). We also found the chambered cairn on the way up to here but failed to gain access. Our bellies were calling us but its halfway in between Moel ty Uchaf and Cynwyd on your right hand side just next to a farmhouse in a small enclosed field.

Directions
This place is quite easy to find once youve got directions! As you don't see it until your right upon it! Anyway take B4401 off the A5. Pass through Cynwyd and about half a mile down you'll see a red telephone box and postbox on the corner of a lane on your left hand side. Go up that lane 'til you come to a gate leading up to a hill. We parked our car just behind this gate in a field. We asked the farmer who said it was fine as it is still a public place. Then follow the path up the hill and on the top you will find the circle and over the other side of the hill the ruined/overgrown cairn (and other structures). Enjoy!
treehugger-uk Posted by treehugger-uk
1st September 2003ce
Edited 16th October 2003ce

Comments (2)

Just wanted to say thank you tree hugger for your directions to this site. There is no way we would have found it as even asking in the village people were unsure.
By the way the telephone box is no more but the post box is still there. And as additional help, the path to it is opposite a camp site because there is no sign...at all, telling you that there is a monument there. So much so, that I was having serious doubts that we were even heading in the right direction. Surely someone could mark it?
God it's a climb but so worth it. What were the builders thinking though!!! Could there be a windier spot? It's a perfect stone circle but they were obviously made of sterner stuff than me doing their rituals up there.
I'm afraid my gods would have been getting a cursory few prayers before clutching my animal skins I fled to a warmer spot downhill!
Fabulous site. Got some amazing pictures and it was infinitely easier coming down!
Posted by bunnies
5th September 2010ce
Visited Sunday 5 September 2010

There is another way up to the circle, it may be a little longer but well worth it. I visited yesterday for the 2nd time in 12mths with friends who are only just beginning to understand 'John's strange pastime'. However, this also comes with a warning that even experienced 'walkers amongst the stones' may come unstuck as I did.

If you park in the village of Llandrillo in the free carpark next to the bridge over the Ceidiog (and best kept loos for miles around) and walk back no more than 150yds to the chapel and village hall on the right, take the lane up alongside the chapel. This lane rises sharply and becomes a shaded hollow-way, with dappled light coming through the oak/beech woodland, and this is where the experience begins. Large lichen-covered boulders scattered along the way, views to die for and nothing more than birdsong to accompany you (OS: 125:042373 approx). From here you can see the Tyfos circle across the valley (don't forget your binoculars).

As you leave the ancient woodland the climb is less steep but there have been two gates placed across the pathway since my last visit. The OS map shows a footpath or bridal path and as there were no 'private keep out' signs we continued through said gates (the marked footpath crosses this route, but we ignored these signs asserting our rights). Then over stepping-stones in a small mountain stream and across open grassland, magnificent berry-laden Rowan all around and numerous randoms strewn across the land. It is difficult to distinguish between field clearance and possible cairn sites at times. This route then meets the path/lane which I assume is Bunnies route up from the post box with Moel-Ty-Uchaf looming above on our right. The actual circle is not visible until you are just yards from it.

It was from here I questioned my prepartion - yesterday the weather was warm, dry under foot and only a slight breeze at village level and on the lower approach and although prepared with boots, fleeces and light showerproof jackets we were knocked sideways by the wind near the summit and got absolutely drenched by rain driven horizontally! Obligatory photos done we promptly returned and were almost dry again before we got to the car. Its always good to see sites under differing weather/light conditions, but its a timely reminder for me at least as we head into Winter.

As Bunnies said just what were they thinking of, but what a site irrespective of its stature. Approaching it this way you also pass the remains of a cist just below the circle, but not much evidence of the cairn. Its my belief that certain landowners do not want us to visit this site, hence the lack of signs and the new gates, but choose your day and get there!

(PS: this route is detailed in Robert Harris' book "Walks in Ancient Wales", ISBN:978-1-85058-797-2)
Posted by JohnAko
6th September 2010ce
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