This site uses cookies please click 'Accept' to continue and remove this message or 'More....' to view our cookie policy

Continued use of this site indicates that you accept our cookie policy

For full access to iFootpath, to join the walking community, rate the walks, print, leave comments, mark walks as Favourite & Completed (mirror in the App), and much more please register and login. It's free (no subscription, no charge to view or download a walking guide or GPS route) and only takes a moment or two. Already registered? Login here.

Hay Bluff and Offa's Dyke

There are currently 1 comments and 0 photos online for this walk.

Hay Bluff and Offa's Dyke
Author: melanzana, Published: 13 Apr 2017 Walk Rating:star1 iFootpath - walking guides and directions for the UKstar1 iFootpath - walking guides and directions for the UKstar1 iFootpath - walking guides and directions for the UKstar1 iFootpath - walking guides and directions for the UKstar0 iFootpath - walking guides and directions for the UK
Powys, Hay on Wye
Walk Type: Mountains
Hay Bluff and Offa's Dyke
Length: 6 miles,  Difficulty: boot iFootpath - walking guides and directions for the UK boot iFootpath - walking guides and directions for the UK boot iFootpath - walking guides and directions for the UK boot iFootpath - walking guides and directions for the UK
iFootpath home page    Get the iFootpath iOS/apple app    Get the Android app from Google Play    Get the Android app from Amazon

0002_sunny_intervals iFootpath - walking guides and directions for the UKToday's weather
14 °C, Partly cloudy, Wind: 16 mph SW
Next few days: Hover over icon for more info.
0002_sunny_intervals iFootpath - walking guides and directions for the UK 0004_black_low_cloud iFootpath - walking guides and directions for the UK 0009_light_rain_showers iFootpath - walking guides and directions for the UK 0003_white_cloud iFootpath - walking guides and directions for the UK 0006_mist iFootpath - walking guides and directions for the UK

This 6 mile walk in Powys is along one of the most spectacular sections of the Offa's Dyke long distance path. There are great views of Lord Hereford's Knob peak across the valley (Twmpa in Welsh). The middle part of the walk is a simple 'there and back' arm of the route, meaning you can go on as far as you wish (to lengthen or shorten the route). The path actually extends along the ridge for a few more miles. You can admire views over the Cats Back (the Black Hill of the book), on to the Malvern Hills and miles into England. Having retraced your steps along the middle 'arm', the descent follows the other side of Hay Bluff with views towards Hay-on-Wye and the Golden Valley.

This is not a walk to do in poor weather or when visibility is poor. The route begins with a steep ascent but is then flat followed by a gentler descent. There are no stiles or gates but you will need to jump across 3 or 4 little streams on the return leg, hence walking boots are essential. After the steep ascent onto the Bluff, you hit the main Offa's Dyke path. This is either well-gravelled or, in some places, it has huge sandstone slabs across the peat bog moor (a major technical feat in itself!). Technically at points you are 30 yards away from the border path and dyke, but it is a peat bog and very wet, so always stay on the main path. You will be sharing some of the paths with ponies and sheep so take care with dogs. Allow 3 hours.

The walk starts about 4 miles south of Hay-on-Wye. There is good parking off the road in a lay-by (the Car Park for Hay Bluff) by a stone circle (the stones are now mostly sunken into the ground, but there are wonderful views to mid-Wales on a clear day, so you can see why the ancients liked the spot). Drive to Hay-on-Wye on the B4350 and follow signs to turn south (just before the main town from the Brecon direction, or just after the town from the Hereford direction) towards Capel Y Ffin. At a further junction and signpost, again take the Capel y Ffin road. After a couple of miles of a narrow road (with passing places) you will emerge onto a high treeless plateau common. Carry on for about one mile to reach the main large parking lay-by on your right (from which the walk directions begin). This is just before a major fork in the road. There are plenty of other spots to park before this point and in dry weather lots of people park on the common. Parking gets trickier after this, so I suggest you do stop here for this walk. The nearest post code is HR3 5RJ, but this is not the exact place (it will head too far south), so follow the above directions rather than your sat-nav.

View Larger Map

Walk Sections

Start to Sharp Left Turn
Start to Sharp Left Turn

Start point: 52.0286 lat, -3.1095 long
End point: 52.0221 lat, -3.1049 long

Begin by standing in the parking lay-by, facing the road. Walk diagonally right across the road to find the steep, well-trodden path that will lead you up Hay Bluff. It is quite a pull up 100 metres and then you will join the main gravelled path which takes you on up to the top of the Bluff.

Sharp Left Turn to Trig Point
Sharp Left Turn to Trig Point

Start point: 52.0221 lat, -3.1049 long
End point: 52.023 lat, -3.1025 long

When you get to the top of the path, at a T-junction (pictured), turn sharp left back to the Bluff point and on up the hill. (The chalk arrow in the photo is not always there - there must have been a race recently). Walk on up to the trig point.

Trig Point to Offa's Stone Junction
Trig Point to Offa's Stone Junction

Start point: 52.023 lat, -3.1025 long
End point: 52.0179 lat, -3.0934 long

Once at the trig point, take time to catch your breath and admire the views. When you are ready to continue, carry on along Offa's Dyke Path, following a very well made path.

Offa's Stone Junction to Stone Pile
Offa's Stone Junction to Stone Pile

Start point: 52.0179 lat, -3.0934 long
End point: 52.0173 lat, -3.0922 long

Continue on, walking past a stone Offa's Dyke waymarker at a junction, Waypoint 3. Take the right-hand fork to carry on up the hill. (Note: you will return to this point later and take the other path for your descent). In a while you will come to a man-made pile of stones. At this point you just follow a beautifully made path, huge weathered reclaimed sandstone laid over the moorland.

Stone Pile to Turning Point
Stone Pile to Turning Point

Start point: 52.0173 lat, -3.0922 long
End point: 51.9999 lat, -3.0791 long

We chose to stop at the next (second) stone pile, where there are views to the Black Hill/Cats and on to the Malverns. The path actually extends many more miles on this ridge so you can extend the walk should you wish, with views down to Llanthony until you finally descend near Llanvianhangel. Otherwise, now is the time to turn around.

Turning Point to Stone Dyke Marker
Turning Point to Stone Dyke Marker

Start point: 51.9999 lat, -3.0791 long
End point: 52.028 lat, -3.1022 long

Retrace your steps to the Offa's Dyke stone marker that you passed earlier. This time take the right-hand fork to begin your descent.

Stone Dyke Marker to End
Stone Dyke Marker to End

Start point: 52.028 lat, -3.1022 long
End point: 52.0293 lat, -3.1098 long

Simply follow this gentler path on down the mountain and across the moor. Along the way you will need to hop over a few streams and you will pass one more stone marker on the lovely route down. You will emerge back to the road and car park where the walk began.

Remember...the best way of following our walking guides is to use the iFootpath App (iOS and Android) where you will have all the information in the palm of your hand and see your exact location on the live map as you travel. You can also add comments, photos, ratings and track your own routes.

Check out these resources for your walk

hotels Hostel Directory GetMap Rail

network iFootpath - walking guides and directions for the UK Original GPX source file

Text and images for this walk are Copyright © 2017 by the author melanzana and may not be reproduced without permission.


1 comments for "Hay Bluff and Offa's Dyke"

Great walk and easy to follow directions - you can't get lost. If you take dogs (we did) keep them on a lead on the ascent and descent as sheep and ponies around. Fine to let them loose on the top (if decent recall) as sheep free (at least today!)

ADMIN RESPONSE: Glad you enjoyed the walk - we have made a note in the introduction about the livestock for future walkers.

By vickydickson on 04 Jul 2017

The information in this guide has been provided in good faith and is intended only as a guide, not a statement of fact. You are advised to check the accuracy of the information provided and should not use this guide for navigational directions nor should you rely on the accuracy of the weather forecast. You are advised to take appropriate clothing, footwear, equipment and navigational materials with you according to the current and possible weather and nature of the terrain. Always follow the country code and follow any additional warnings or instructions that may be available. Some walks may be very strenuous and you are advised to seek medical advice if you have any doubts as to your capability to complete the walk.

Powered by World Weather Online.

We've an App too

Did you know that we have an iFootopath App? - includes all walks with directions and a live map...

No need to print and no more wrong turns....

Get the iFootpath App

appstore  en badge web generic

Click top right X to close.

Share

 

Walks Nearby

Recently Added Walks.

North of Woodstock Stroll, OxfordshireBleadon Hill and Loxton, SomersetExplore Surrey: Sidney Wood and the Lost Canal, SurreyMaidenhead Boundary Walk, BerkshireOld Pale Hill and Delamere Forest, CheshireDorn Valley Ramble, OxfordshireThe Morris Dancer Kelsall Trail, CheshireBrookmans and Gobions Wood, HertfordshireStonesfield Stroll, Oxfordshire

There are currently 1200 shared walks online. Add yours today!

What our customers say

We've an App too

Did you know that we have an iFootopath App? - includes all walks with directions and a live map...

No need to print and no more wrong turns....

Get the iFootpath App

appstore  en badge web generic

Click top right X to close.