Elan Valley

The Elan Valley Reservoirs are a chain of man-made lakes created from damming the Elan and Claerwen rivers within the Elan Valley in Mid Wales. There are four dams on the river Elan; Craig GochPen-y-garregGarreg Ddu, and Caban Coch. The river Claerwen has the newest, and largest Claerwen dam followed by the unfinished Dol-y-Mynach dam.  Most of the 180 square kilometres of the Elan Estate is covered by 12 separate Sites of Special Scientific Interest. Within the Estate is the Claerwen National Nature Reserve.  Whether you just fancy a leisurely stroll or a challenging hike Elan has something for everyone. There is open access over most of the 70 square mile Estate, and there are over 80 miles of designated rights of way. There are many walks and trails with a good mixture of lengths to cater for all, including nature trails and scenic walks.

For more details see http://www.elanvalley.org.uk/events

Red Kite feeding at Bwlch Nant yr Arian

Bwlch Nant yr Arian Visitor Centre sits at the head of a dramatic valley and has commanding views of Cardigan Bay and the Cambrian Mountains.  The visitor centre is the starting point for a range of waymarked trails for walkers, mountain bikers, runners and horse riders.  In 1999, Bwlch Nant yr Arian became a red kite feeding station as part of a programme to protect the small number of red kites in the area at that time.

Nowadays, the red kites are fed by the lake every day at 2pm in winter (GMT) and at 3pm in summer (BST).   The Barcud Trail (an easy access route around the lake) offer fantastic views of this spectacle. There is also a bird hide overlooking the feeding area. You can expect to see as many as 150 kites coming in to feed – there are often more during winter months. They are mostly local birds and they come to feed from within a 10 mile radius. 

For more details see http://www.naturalresources.wales/bwlchnantyrarian

Gilfach nature reserve

Gilfach nature discovery centre situated in a beautiful setting at the confluence of the Marteg River with the River Wye in the Cambrian Mountains of Mid Wales, Gilfach is locally unique because of its wide variety of habitats: high moorland to enclosed meadow oak woodland to rocky upland river. Because of this variety the farm supports a tremendous abundance of birds and animals within a comparatively small area. This richness of wildlife has adapted to living in the various habitats created over the centuries through the practice of traditional farming.

Follow the walking trails through meadows peppered with anthills, look out over the valley with its glorious views and spot a dipper on the River Marteg as it tumbles down through the reserve and over the waterfalls - where in November you might just glimpse a leaping salmon.

For more details see http://www.rwtwales.org/what-we-do/projects/exploring-gilfach-project