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




Take the B4391 out of llan Ffestiniog, at the first right turn, turn left up rough track through two gates and park at some kind of monitoring station amongst a dozen or so fir trees.
The first point of interest is just yards from the car, a copy of a 5th to 6th century grave stone bearing in latin the inscription:- Cantiorix lies here he was a citizen of Venedos cousin of Maglos the magistrate. see interesting, where is Venedos and who was Maglos.
From here follow the path between two hills, well, one hill and a mountain, for incredible views and a look down onto the fort climb the small mountain.
The fort has been partially reconstructed around the north facing entrance which is next to a snail shell hut, once a round house but then turned into an iron smelting furnace. Fifty metres north outside the fort another iron smelting hut is consolidated and preserved it's even got slag still in situ, as it were. The fort isnt a big one, maybe 30m x 25m but the reconstructed part really makes up for any size issues (size isnt everything, it depends where you put it and how good it looks)
Inside the fort there are weird little standing stones which threw me a little bit untill I realised they were markers for buildings maybe, one of them looks like a small four poster right in the middle of the fort. There are also two more round huts to be seen in the fort but they're walls aren't high.
As with most ancient places in Snowdonia they take a back seat to the scenery, Manod Mawr (661m) is the domineering influence here, from the south it looks like a single hugely gigantic lump of rock ( I mean sacred hill)
But we can also see down to Cricceth and the sea, and the bigger mountains to the north west, the forts position guards the entrance to the hidden valley, it's invisible from the road, and a good source of iron ore.
A weirdly wonderful and magical place marred only by big ugly quarries, which were easily ignored.
I apologise only mildly for the plethora of pictures as its a really photogenic place with lots of features, and seeing as its just me doing Snowdonia in detail, it might be some time till someone comes here.
postman Posted by postman
3rd May 2010ce
Edited 3rd May 2010ce

Comments (2)

Good one Postie. Certainly looks well worth a couple of hours. Manod Mawr's a very striking mountain from this side... not so from the north, I'm afraid - which is why I've never been able to bring myself to ascend it.

Methinks a wander 'round this way will be a good substitute one day.
3rd May 2010ce
Well worth it, I spent 4 hours up there wandering from peak to peak surveying the entire area as much as I could, I particularly liked the big enclosure though its of unknown date. it was dead cold to start off but it warmed up as the sun climbed. On the way there the Arenig mountains had snow on them, but was gone four hours later. postman Posted by postman
3rd May 2010ce
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