Valleys 100 Section 5 - Llanwonno to Abercynon

Section 5 of The Valleys Hundred leaves the forestry of Llanwonno and heads into the first night section as it descends to Abercynon.

We anticipate that this first night section will be rather fast!! Walkers will prise themselves away from the comforts of the Brynffynnon Hotel and follow a forestry track that descends gently to Ynysybwl. Here the Nant Clydach will be followed before gently climbing into woodland above Glyncoch.

A delightful descent on good paths through the woods brings the route to the outskirts of Abercynon. Abercynon is famous for being the location of the first ever steam locomotive journey. Samuel Homfray, the owner of the Penydarren Iron Works made a bet of 1000 guineas with Richard Crawshay, the owner of the Cyfarthfa Iron Works, that he could construct a steam engine that would be capable of hauling a load of 10 tons of iron ore. Until this time, iron ore and the iron that it produced had been moved by canal barges.

Richard Trevithick was employed and in 1804 he built the first ever steam locomotive. The locomotive was connected to five trams and as well as being loaded with iron ore, 70 men sat on the trams to add to the weight. Despite a mishap with the funnel hitting a bridge, the journey was completed at approximately 5 mph, and Trevithick proved that steam locomotion was a reality for the future.

A short street walk will bring walkers to checkpoint 5 at Abercynon Community Centre.

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