About the Author

My name is Will.

Every year I research different places to go and my ‘I should go here’ list gets longer. I add it and then start thinking of the best way of getting around when there, be it cycling, backpacking or vehicular.

The Exploration Journal is my way to document my travels to these places and my development as a photographer.

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A rainy walk to Pistyll Rhaeadr waterfall

My Easter holiday this year was to Wales with a couple of friends. We spent a day in the Wye Valley (and spotted a family of boar!) and then carried on to Snowdonia where we spent a few days walking in the mountains. This post covers the Wye Valley and Pistyll Rhaeadr waterfall which we visited enroute to Snowdonia.

Wye Valley

Our first few nights were in a small stone AirBNB cottage in the Wye Valley. We only had one full day as we were using it as a rest stop to break up the journey to North Wales. Our walk was around Symonds Yat, a gorge covered in woodland and overlooking a large meander in the river.

I also spotted a Lily Leaf Beetle, these little bugs go around devouring leaves and leaving nothing but the stalk behind.

Pistyll Rhaeadr Waterfall

After our brief stay in the Wye Valley, we continued on towards Snowdonia. I investigated the route beforehand and found a waterfall pretty much en-route. The only downside to the plan was that it was raining by the time we got there. Parking at Pistyll Rhaeadr costs around £5 but if you are lucky there is roadside parking shortly before the cafe.

I’m pretty enthusiastic about waterfalls and something I’ve always wanted to do, and one of the reasons I got my new camera, is to take photos where the water is silky smooth. This was a good opportunity so I fiddled with the shutter speed to make it stay open longer and took a photo.

The good news is that it mostly worked, especially for the lower part of the waterfall. The not so good news is that the weather condition and the sun reflecting from the low clouds caused the top part of the photo to be a shiny fuzzy mess. The other problem with a longer shutter speed means that handshake is more noticeable in the photo. So my next purchase is going to be a lightweight tripod to take on day trips to waterfalls like this one.

We walked up to the top of the waterfall but it was firmly enshrouded in the clouds, so no good for taking photos of the view. I took just one, of the very edge of the waterfall where it starts the 43m drop to the plunge pool. The walk up is quite easy and shouldn’t take you more than 20 minutes, you head to the left of the waterfall and follow the signs up the track.


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