We took an alternate route to the ones suggested in the books. We drove from Rowen to the Rhiw Youth Hostel. From here we walked to the Bwlch-y-Ddeufan stones taking in the other monuments on the way. Walking this way, and the same way back there is never more than 10 minutes between sites. Perfect.
I visited this site for the fist time in Jan 2002 and was completely blown away by it. To be honest I wasn't expecting much during the drive there but the steep climb up the road to the car park (described in TMA) really sets the scene. There is plenty to see including one of the finest Dolmens you'll see anywhere (the photo of said dolmen in TMA far from does it justice) which looks incredibly different depending on which side you look at it from. I can't enthuse about this place enough, it's got the lot. Menhirs, (several!) a stone circle and a brilliant dolmen plus breathtaking scenery, go if you can!
Yes well powerlines ahoy! Like Roman Roads these things are. Funny that int it. Well this site is without a doubt a must see if you are anywhere near it at all. Don't expect to get your car up the road though unless it has a big engine or thirty five wheels. The hill is of the lovely steep variety so common in N Clwyd. YHA accom at the top (Rowan) which I gather is mostly used by people visiting these stones (though when I visited it was being refurbished so I could only read about it). Nice floor growth later in the year. Beautiful views when chin is lifted.
How can you talk about these stones without mentioning those blooming pylons, they are there, get over it, move on.
The two big stones stand maybe 60-70 yards apart northwest - southeast of of each other. The north west stone is just over six feet tall and squarish with flat top. The southeast stone is about eight to nine feet tall roundish in section and pointy topped, I struggle to not to bring up male and female associations. Both stones have other numerous smaller stones in close attendance.
I cant recall how many times I've been here, but it hasn't been this misty and damp before. We are wet and cold now so it's time to dry off and warm up whilst we drive over to Capel Garmon.
Another Barclodiad y Gawres can be seen almost perfectly west of here 25 miles away on Angelsey, but the two are very different monuments.
This Apronful of stones is much smaller with no big chambers or rock art and is also in a very different kind of place, Angelsey's is right by the sea, you cant even see the sea from here, this Apronful is very much mountain oriented.
The two big stones of Bwlch y Ddeufaen are very close and visible to the north west. Just to the north across the track is one of those natural burial chamber type things.
In the middle of the pile of stones is a hole, a scoop, a depression where supposedly a cist/chamber was once to be found. The cairn is actually much larger than the stones on the surface would suggest, approximately twice as large. I have been here before and posted a couple of images, but strangely no field notes, but I no longer have any pics on my computer so that is partly the reason for my return visit. It is also so close to Cerrig Pryfaid that to not come up here would have been very remiss.