You may remember I recently recounted the legend of Devil's Bridge and then last week we were at a steam rally. Today I thought I'd link back to Devil's Bridge, and still continuing the theme of 'steam' tell you a bit about Rheilfordd Cwm Rheidol or the Rheidol Valley Railway. I used to live on a hill overlooking the Rheidol Valley (pronounced Ray-dol') and the River Rheidol winding it's way through the valley and down to the sea. I could also watch the little steam engines on the narrow gauge railway , chugging their way into the mountains, the same mountains where I spent many happy hours long distance horseback riding.
Of course I rode on the trains myself, many times, and especially enjoyed taking my niece and nephew on the 'Cowboy Specials' where kids, and often their parents as well, would dress up as cowboys. Then the train would be 'held up' halfway up the mountain by local students dressed up as indians. I'm not sure if they still have the cowboy specials but I do know they run a Halloween train and a Santa special.
The train runs from Aberystwyth to Devils Bridge, where it stops to give visitors time to look around the famous falls, and have a bite to eat, before the homeward journey.
This is what it says on the Rheidol Railway's website:
"Travelling on the Vale of Rheidol Railway is the finest way to explore the stunning Rheidol Valley. Opened in 1902, the railway has been delighting passengers young and old for over a century.
|The clearing in the trees on the hill behind the train is known locally as 'the stag'|
climb 700ft (200m) in the 11¾ miles from Aberystwyth to Devil's Bridge.
The line is a masterpiece of engineering, opened in 1902 to carry lead ore, timber and passenger traffic. The narrow track gauge allows the railway to follow the contours of the terrain with many sharp curves and steep gradients which add to the railway's charm."
Finally, just so you get the flavour of this enchanting train ride, I'll leave you with the Vale of Rheidol's video
I am endebted to the Vale of Rheidol Railway for their kind permission to use the video and other material on my blog. Should you visit my beautiful homeland of Wales, and be anywhere near Aberystwyth, do book a ride which I can promise you will never forget, through some of the most breathtaking scenery you will find in the whole of the British Isles. You can find out more about the Rheidol Railway by going to their website: