18 June 13 Visit to Lake Vyrnwy

02nd July 2013
We had a few days away at Lake Vyrnwy and stayed at the Lake Vyrnwy Hotel. I’ve never visited the area before and I was hoping to see and photograph some different birds to those that I see at my hide and at Woolston Eyes. Birds that are known to breed in the area include Peregrine Falcon, Pied Flycatcher, Redstart, Siskin and Wood Warbler.

The hotel was built in the 1880’s for the dignitaries and VIP’s that visited the area while the dam was being constructed for the new reservoir. The hotel although getting on a bit now was nicely decorated and clean, the food was good and the staff were very pleasant.

The view from the hotel over the lake is stunning particularly at dusk.

Sunset over Lake Vyrnwy

I think the lake runs more or less east to west and is just over 4 miles long and has a road that circumnavigates it, 11 miles or so.

The dam is constructed a the east end of the lake and approximately 1,000 metres (3,300 ft) from the dam is the reservoir's straining tower. Standing 30 metres (98 ft) from the shore its purpose is to filter or strain out material in the water with a fine metal mesh, before the water flows along an aqueduct for 68 miles to Liverpool.

Straining Tower

There were plenty of Swifts, Swallows and House Martins flying around the Hotel and I did spend some time pointing the 500mm lens through the hotel window trying to get some photos but with no luck whatsoever.

There were quite a few Flycatchers in the trees and shrubs in the hotel gardens along with Chiffchaffs but again no photographs to show for the watching.

I visited the RSPB hide near to the dam which has some feeders and while I was there Chaffinch, Siskin, Blue and Great Tit, a family of Nuthatches and a Marsh Tit were frequent visitors to the feeders.

Marsh Tit

The feeders are situated only a few inches from the glass window at the front of the hide which is fantastic for getting close up views of the birds but not so brilliant for photography; however a short zoom lens is sufficient for a frame filling photograph.


There are a couple of other hides on the north side of the reservoir which were quite comfortable and empty when I visited, perhaps that was due to the fact that there appeared to be absolutely nothing on the water including Mallards. There are also quite a few view point scattered around the lake.

Although I didn’t see a Peregrine, I did see a few Buzzards and a female Hen Harrier flying over.

The lake is quite remote and is probably a 30 – 45 mins drive to towns of any size but we did manage to get to the coast, Aberdovey and Tywyn (Towyn) both places are quite pleasant and the sun shone!

Jackdaw at Aberdovey

Tal y Llyn

An interesting flower display

Thanks for reading


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