GEOLOGY FIELD TRIPS
We offer geology Field Trips in Wales and the Marches. Field trips can be done by small groups (2 - 7) using my vehicle. They can also be done by a larger group like a U3A or University using shared cars or your organisations' large vehicle.
Large Groups (10 people minimum, picnic lunch not included) - £15 per person per day.
Small Group (2 - 7 people) - £40 per person per day + a shared fuel cost. Picnic lunch included. The Pembrokeshire trip is 2 days so has an additional accommodation cost.
Field Trip Titles
1. Bwa Maen, Henrhyd waterfall and Cwm Gwrelych Geoheritage Trail
2. Stanner Rocks and the Strinds Quarry
3. Llyn-y-Fan Fach, Mydffai and Llandovery
4. Glamorgan coast and dinosaur footprints
5. Cribarth and Penwyllt
6. Elan Valley and the Mid Wales Ore Field
7. Woolhope Dome
8. Two day Pembrokeshire trip.
9. Clydach Gorge and the Blaenavon World Heritage Site
10. Old Red Sandstone of the Black Mountains
11. Henllys Vale, the Black Mountain Quarries and Carreg Cennan Castle
12. Craig Cerrig Gleisiad, and Myndydd Illutud
13. The Gower
14. Glamorgan Heritage Coast - Western area
15. Ystradfellte waterfalls and Porth y Ogrof cave
16. Merthyr Tydfil
These Field Trips are suitable for U3A Geology Groups
Hay-on-Wye U3A on a geology field-trip in Pembrokeshire
From 2013 to 2016 we took Hay U3A on all the Field Trips listed above, and wecould do the same for your U3A
Example Itineraries of some of our Field-trips
(not all Field-trips shown)
The Elan Valley and the Mid-Wales Ore Field
Pen-y-garreg dam in the Elan Valley
The mine-scape of Cwmystwyth
Elan Valley - here we see fossilised remains of great submarine landslides called turbidites. We also admire the glaciated scenery and learn the story of the Victorian dams built to provide Birmingham with water.
Cwmystwyth - here we visit the remains of Mid Wales' largest former metal mine. In the spoil heaps it is possible to find your own beautiful specimens of galena and chalcopyrite.
Devil's Bridge - here we walk down to see breathtaking waterfalls that cut through the Llandovery aged rocks.
Llywernog Silver Lead Mine - here we go on an underground tour and learn how hard the life was for these metal miners.
Woolhope Dome - Herefordshire
This fascinating geological structure cuts off Woolhope making it one of the most tranquil areas of Herefordshire.
The first stop is Swardon Quarry on the western outer side of the dome. Here some fossils can be seen and there are views over Hereford towards the Black Mountains. At Park Coppice a view of the two parallel ridges that form the eastern edge of the dome can be seen.
At Marcle Ridge Quarry we have a closer look at the Aymestry Limestone that forms the outer ridge of the dome and then walk 1.5 miles to Woolhope village finding a few fossils on the way. After our visit to the village we climb back up the inner ridge, about 1 mile, to a site with fossils and an old lime kiln. Here we eat our picnic lunch. We then find oursleves in the gap between the two ridges. We climb to top of the outside ridge and walk back to the vehicle with wonderful views of the Malvern Hills and distant Cotswolds. We then visit Wonder landslip and Woolhope Cockshoot where faults can be seen. The day ends with a visit to Rudge End Quarry which is in the Woolhope Limestone that forms the centre of the dome. This site is also a SSSI for Botany.
Two Day Trip to Pembrokeshire
The Ladies Cove anticline, Saunderfoot
Variscan Fold, Stack Pole Quay
Saundersfoot - to see the 'Ladies Cove Anticline' this spectacular fold is in the Carboniferous coal measures.
Stackpole Quay - to see Varsican folds and faults in the Carboniferous limestone, it is also possible to find fossils in the cliffs.
Skrinkle Haven - Here the spectacular 'Church Doors' can be see and the contact between Devonian Old Red Sandstone and Carboniferous limestone can be seen.
Tenby's North Beach - to see the Millstone Grit of the lower most Carboniferous
Night spent in Tenby
Whitesands Beach, St Davids - This classic geological locality has sedimentary rocks of several Cambrian series. It is also possible to see Precambrian tuffs (volcanic ash) and Ordovician aged igneous intrusions.
St Davids's Cathedral - A lunch stop and the opportunity to observe this incredible building, we can have a close look at the purple Cambrian sandstone from which it was built.
Abereiddi Bay - This classic locality lends it name to the Abereiddian stage of the Ordovician. Here graptolite fossils can be found everywhere in the car park. We then head to the 'Blue Lagoon' where the sea has flooded the site of former slate workings.
Porthgain - for afternoon tea and loos before our depature. This fascinating small bay was once the centre of a thriving quarrying and brick making industry. Here there were quarries for Ordovician slate and igneous rock on the north west headland.
ROCK AGE AND WHERE YOU WILL SEE THEM:
PreCambrian: Whitesands Bay
Cambrian: St David's Cathedral and Whitesands Bay
Devonian: Skrinkle Haven
Millstone Grit: Tenby
Coal Measures: Saundersfoot
Limestone: Stackpole Quay and Skinkle Haven
Henllys Vale, the Black Mountain Quarries and Carreg Cennan Castle
Finding coal at Henllys Vale
Hay U3A at Herbert's Quarry
Henllys Vale - We walk for approximately 2.5 miles in total, on a flat former tram way. At the furthest part of the walk is the Henllys Vale colliery. Here we can see coal and iron stone nodules within the rock layers. We can also see river channel sediments. The site is also impressive for industrial archaeology with the engine house chimney and lime kilns to be seen.
The Black Mountain Centre, Brynamman - Here we have lunch in the cafe and can learn about the industrial history of the Black Mountain.
A Road side Quarry - with ironstones to be seen.
The Black Mountain Quarries (Herbert's Quarry) - Here we can admire magnificent views and see the impressive quarry workings. Fossils can be found in the limestone.
View point of Carreg Cennan Castle - Here e discuss the Carreg Cennan fault. We can also take a short walk, 1 mile in total through fields, to see two large Shake Holes and the source of the River Loughor.
Carreg cennan Castle - We visit the castle itself, which has been labelled the most romantic ruin in Wales. Adults £4, OAPs £3.50.
Old Red Sandstone of the Black Mountains explained...
Pwll y Wrach waterfall
Our group climbing Cockitt Hill
Fossil burrows of Beaconites on Cockitt Hill
This tour explains the Old Red Sandstone that makes up the Black Mountains and the glacial processes that have carved out the present landscape.
Rhos Fawr- For glacial features, and an overview of Old Red Sandstone strata.
Pwll y Wrach Nature Reserve - Where important fish fossil have been found and learn about fossil soil horizons.
Cockitt Hill - We have a short climb to find fossilised worm burrows and an explanation of the formation of nearby Llangorse Lake.
Bwlch - We visit an old quarry and observe fossilised river channels.
Llangorse Lake as seen from Cockitt Hillwas formed in the last Ice Age
Mynnydd Illtud and Craig Cerrig Gleisiad
Hay U3A at Twyn y Gaer
Treath Mawr bog
Inside Craig Cerrig Gleisiad
Twyn y Gaer Iron Age Fort, on Mynydd Illtud -For superb views across the Usk valley and a discussion of lateral moraines and terminal moraines.
Mynydd Itttud - We walk to a fossilised Devonian River Channel and to a terminal moraine, and a possible kettle hole. Treath Mawr is a low lying marshy are that was an ice damed lake behind the moraine. The sediments in this lake have given an important record into the changing climate.
Craig Cerrig Gleisiad - a magnificent glacial amphitheatre and SSSI for the rare Alpine plants it contains. Here we discuss the glacier that it would have contained and the younger Dryas glacial re-advance. We also have another look at moraines.
Fossilised Devonian river channel
A view of Worm's Head
Rhossili - We walk from the car park to see Old Red Sandstone in Rhossili Down. We will then walk along the road to Middleton. We will then walk to the top of Mewslade, a valley formed by glacial meltwater, and find fossils in an old limestone quarry. We then walk along the cliff tops, to Fall Bay. At Fall Bay swimming is possible so why not bring your costumes? We will be examining the limestone and also glacial deposits.
Tears Point - Picnic lunch at the top of Tears Point. Here we can see a raised beach and excellent views of Worm's Head.
Worm's Head - We cross the causeway to Worm's Head. We aim to go all the way to the outermost point.
Glamorgan Heritage Coast (Western part)
James Cresswell explaining the view from Trwyn y Witch headland
An ammonite in Dunraven Bay
Dunraven Bay Southerndown - Here we will see both the same Carboniferous Limestone that is present in the southern part of the Brecon Beacons National Park, and Jurassic sediments. The Jurassic sediments here contain Gryphea (Devil's Toenail) fossils. We walk for 2 miles in total around the Trwyn y Witch headland on the beach, returning over the headland. Please see the attached walk description sheet for full details.
Nash Point - This dramatic cliff top is home to a lighthouse, and the cliffs below have yielded plesiosaur and ichthyosaur fossil remains. We spend 45 mins here looking for fossils on the beach under the cliffs. The rocks here are also Jurassic.
Llantwit Major - We spend the rest of the afternoon on the beach here. One of the best locations for collecting fossils from Wales is Llantwit Major, expect to find anything here!.... but ammonites are less common and shells, sponges, corals, echinoids are far more common. There is a vast range of different shells including gigantic 5 inch gastropods and gryphea the size of tennis balls. In short excluding ammonites, everything else seems much bigger here. Bones can also be found both of fish remains and of Ichthyosaurus. The dark shale areas on the foreshore between the hard limestone are worth a search since this is the location where bones and the giant gastropod can be found.