Colin and John had decided to lead their June walk at Talley so when I saw that a local ramblers group was walking in that area last January, the three of us decided to join them for some help with sussing a route.
Even though that walk did go somewhat awry with the leader forgetting the route---something that would NEVER happen on a West Wales walk of course!!---Colin and John got some good ideas particularly for walking on the east side of Talley, as most people stick to the area near the Abbey and Lake.
On the day of our walk, after herding up a few strays who seemed to be parked at the wrong starting point, sixteen of us, plus Whisper, were ready for the off.
Everyone was in for a real treat at this lovely picturesque area and it was a bonus that not many knew it, so we could introduce them to another new and memorable place --one I'm sure they will want to return to, to explore further.
We had been warned that at the start we would be climbing for some time, but were also told of the reward we would get, with the brilliant views from the top.
Dafydd, always eager to pack as much into his day as possible, turned around after a while to spend a few hours with friends who lived nearby.
All the way up we were overwhelmed with the great views over the Carmarthenshire countryside and eventually we came to the highest point and a very lovely large pond.
Now for the downhill bit and for people who didn't know the area, the sight looking down on Talley Lake and Abbey as we descended, was awesome.
Spurred on by rumbling tummies we ended up at the Lake and Abbey for a late lunch stop, with some of us managing to grab a seat on a solitary bench, and others spreading out by the graves and cemetary wall to hungrily devour our packed lunches.
Before we set off again, Colin gave us a lovely potted history of the Abbey and surrounding area.
Joy and Whisper couldn't join us for the afternoon route so bade us farewell at this point.
We were again warned that the path through the forest was steeper than this mornings haul up, and a bit later on, when we were huffing and puffing through the trees on a steeper and steeper incline, someone joked that Joy must have known what the afternoon had in store for us!!!
When we eventually emerged from the trees though, the views were absolutely magnificent.
Some stayed at the well positioned picnic table and benches, for a well earned rest and to really take in the expansive view, whilst the others climbed for a further ten minutes or so to the very top of Mynydd Cynros.
Another long downhill descent took us back to the Abbey and Lake and after a short single file march along the busy road, we were back to the cars.
Then we were all in for arguably the biggest treat of the day, Colin and John had brought with them, some freshly home made cakes, lemon drizzle cake and apple and cinnamon muffins---absolutely delicious-- and I don't think there were even any crumbs left over at the end.
Many thanks to Colin and John for a perfectly sussed and very varied route giving us the best views of Talley and the surrounding area.
The scrummy cakes were a very kind thought and well appreciated by everyone, and were the perfect end to a perfect day.