Nineteen members and four dogs braved a forecast of a gusty north-westerly wind, strong wind-chill and occasional snow showers, for our first walk of 2019. This was a great turn out and we were particularly pleased to welcome one new member, and members from as far afield as Dorset and Pembrokeshire!
The Pontsticill Reservoir, formed in the 1920s, is in the southern part of the Brecon Beacons National Park, close to Merthyr Tydfil. This seven mile walk around the Reservoir took in the Brecon Mountain Railway (now a heritage steam railway attraction, but formerly part of the Brecon - Merthyr line), a trip onto the the adjacent upland moorland, with views north to the snow dusted peaks of Corn Du, Pen y Fan, Cribyn and Fan y Big, a walk along an ancient routeway and across the Pontsticill Dam. For our return leg we walked up through the northern edge of the village of Ponsticill, joining the Taf Trail route to walk through the Taf Fechan coniferous forest to return to our starting point.
This walk afforded many stunning views across the Reservoir and the National Park. Even the occasional heavy snow shower added excitement and contrast to this very enjoyable walk with excellent company and flowing conversation. The walk also linked with several adjacent walks undertaken by the South Wales Group in 2018, adding to a further sense of enjoyment and achievement.