Obejrzane 412 razy, pobrane 3 razy
w pobliżu Bala, Wales (United Kingdom)
A circumnavigation of Llyn Tegid, Bala, otherwise known as “Bala Lake”. Measuring 6km (3.7 miles) in length, 0.8km (0.5 miles) in width and 42.7m (140ft) deep, it is Wales’ largest, and one of its prettiest, natural lakes. The lake is part of the Snowdonia National Park and is looked after by lake wardens.
This was a circumnavigation of the lake that I did on my Oshea GTE in September 2019. Rather than just do a straight thrash up and down the lake, I thought I’d extend the trip by hugging the shoreline all the way around. Bala is a particularly beautiful lake with incredible views of the mountains as you paddle in a southerly direction. If you’re lucky, you’ll do it on a day that the RAF are training, which means you’ll get some amazing views of a variety of aircraft flying low over the lake.
To start the trip, travel to the lake car park which is at the southern end of the town off the A494 (SH 92139 35522). There is a small fee for the car park which is owned by the national park. At the car park you will find a two storey building housing the lake wardens, toilets and changing facilities with coin operated showers. On the ground floor of the building is the Bala Adventure and Watersports Center. The centre hires a wide range of watercraft including SUP’s and safety equipment. They do, however, operate within a strictly adhered to area of the lake, so if you wanted to undertake this trip on their kit you would need to make prior arrangements with them. Give them a call and speak to Mark or Sarah about your plans.
I paddled the lake in an anti-clockwise direction, hugging the shore adjacent to the A494 as I headed to the southern end of the lake. The launch area can get VERY busy, especially on sunny days, so be very aware of other watercraft. Although you will rarely see powered craft on the water there can be a lot of fast moving windsurfers and dinghy sailors. You will soon leave this busier area behind you though and be able to enjoy the peace and quiet of the lake. Safety wise, one of the beauties of following the shoreline is that you will never be in deep water, making emergency “get outs” readily available. Having said that, do make sure you observe common sense safety measures. Have a means of contacting the outside world with you, like a mobile phone in a dry bag. ALWAYS wear your leg leash. If you’re not actually wearing a buoyancy aid, think about at least having one with you that you can donn if needed. I personally favour a Red Paddle Co self inflating life jacket housed in a bum bag, very comfy to wear and paddle in but a lifesaver if you need it. Dress accordingly, for the water temperature and NOT the air temperature, assume you will “go in” and get wet. Take a dry bag with some warm, dry clothes in it. And don’t forget to take fluids with you.
As you paddle south you will pass many secluded spots where you can stop off for a brew or a bite to eat if it is a leisurely day out you have in mind. If you want to get some more distance under your belt before stopping, just before you reach the end of the lake you will see a large bay open up on your right which houses the Glan Llyn outdoor centre and the Glan Llyn caravan and camping park which has a beach area (SH 89033 32047). The camp site is also an option if you want to make this your first experience of an “overnight trip” on a touring board before you try anything more challenging.
As you start the return leg you will approach the village of Llangower where the land bulges out into the lake, meaning you will have a small beach directly in front of you (SH 90201 32159). There is also a picnic area and public toilets situated here. Just around the corner is the Bala camp site with a beachfront. If you want to pull over for a break and a snack, this is your last option (SH 90361 32695)! From here up to the Northern end of the lake there are no further options to beach, unless in an emergency. As you round the Northern end of the lake after passing the sailing club, be mindful of the bridge under which the water flows out of the lake before heading back to your start point.
And there you are, you’ve done it, give yourself a pat on the back and treat yourself to one of the amazing ice cream flavours served at the Loch cafe at the entrance to the car park, you’ve earned it.
Bala Adventure and Watersports: 01678 521615
The Loch Cafe: 01678 520226
Bala Lake Wardens Office: 01678 520626
Glanllyn Lakeside Caravan & Camping Park: 01678 540227