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Winter walking in the National Park

In a change to the usual Walk of the Month feature, Public Rights of Way Officer, Meurig Nicholas offers some advice on walking the Pembrokeshire Coast Path National Trail and inland rights of way network in winter.

These tips will help you get the very best experience if you’re venturing out for a walk, whether it’s along the stunning coastline of Marloes, or exploring the woodland routes in the Gwaun Valley.

At this time of year the weather can be unkind to those of us that wish to head outdoors. Heavy rain, strong winds, ice and snow are all possible in the winter months, so it’s best to be ideally prepared for those conditions if you’re heading out for a walk.

Winter walking in the Pembrokeshire Coast National Park

Here are some tips to keep safe outdoors and to make sure your walk is as enjoyable as possible:

  • Check weather forecasts for the area you are planning to walk before you leave, and don't be afraid to turn back if the weather conditions deteriorate.
  • The Coast Path and inland rights of way network are regularly maintained and inspected but in extreme weather conditions it is particularly important that you take care in using these often naturally rugged, challenging and exposed paths.
  • Be cautious about using parts of the Coast Path and beaches affected by tides – please check tide times to make sure the tide doesn’t cut you off.
  • Suitable clothing – water and windproof clothing and strong footwear with deep treads and ankle support are essential in winter – expect muddy conditions. One or two walking poles give extra stability.
  • Part of the appeal of the coast and countryside is that you can get away from it all. You may not see anyone for hours and there are many places without reliable mobile phone signal, so let someone else know where you're going and when you expect to return.
  • Dog walking - please make sure you keep your dog on a lead at all times on paths where there are sheep and cattle present. Everyone knows how unpleasant dog mess is and it can cause infections, so always clean up after your dog and get rid of the mess responsibly.
  • Plan the location of your walk according to the weather - visit our Web Walks page to find a choice of over 200 circular walks along the coast and countryside within the Pembrokeshire Coast National Park.
  • If you come across an issue while out walking a path that you think requires our attention, then please contact us on 01646 624 800 or email prow@pembrokeshirecoast.org.uk.

Winter walking in the Pembrokeshire Coast National Park

Following the advice above will ensure you get the most out of your walk, even if the weather on the day is very wet and windy, and its muddy underfoot, this is countryside walking in Pembrokeshire at winter, offering a very different view and an unique experience of the Coast & Countryside compared to the spring or summertime.

To quote Alfred Wainwright MBE: “There's no such thing as bad weather, only unsuitable clothing.”


Walk of the Month
Published 31/01/2018



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