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13. CASTELL Y GAER, LLWYNGWRIL
NGR SH 59209

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This is a small fort on a spur overlooking the sea. It is very similar in size, design and situation to fort Caer Bach in the Conwy valley. They both use a combination of stone and earth defences, but it is difficult to tell whether or not the two systems are contemporary.

The stone rampart originally surrounded the flat top of the hill completely, but almost all of it has been removed from the west and north sides. ON the south and east enough survives to show that it was about 4m thick with a simple entrance at the south-east corner.

The outer defences exist only on the south, where two ditches with a high bank between them cut off the promontory from the rising ground behind. The distance from the top of the bank to the bottom of the ditch is about 3.5m. The bank ends with a slightly out-turned bastion on the east side, where a path curves in to enter the fort by the gate through the stone rampart. The northern side may have been slightly steepened by an artificial scarp, but the bank and ditches do not continue around it.

No excavation has been carried out to date the sequence which is implied by the different types of defence, but which is not proven because both circuits use the same entrance.

On a hill immediately south of Llwyngwril (on A493 road 17km (11 miles) south-west of Dolgellau. From north, take 2nd turning left after bridge (steep road) between church and war memorial). Site is on right shortly beyond end of walls. The fort is on private land but the owner allows access to monument.

Distance: Return trip 200m (220yds)
Difficulty: Easy
Time: 45 min

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