“ Address: Cerrigydrudion / Corwen / Conwy / North Wales / LL21 9TT „
If you want a day out in north wales avoid here. The cafe is overpriced grease and the fishing is the same. Don't be fooled by what it was formerly, this place has taken a headlong dive. The boats are dangerous and no money has been spent here since the late 80's which has dropped it into a must avoid, spend your money and time elsewhere in north wales.
Llyn Brenig, the lake with the largest surface area in Wales (920 acres) is set in the heart of the Denbigh Moors on the border between Conwy and Denbighshire. The reservoir was created in 1976 to help control the water flow in the River Dee as part of the management of the water supply to parts of North West England.
With the building of the reservoir, a superb resource for visitors was also created. Denbigh Moors is a beautiful area and the lake enhances this beauty and adds new environments and facilities to explore.
The moors (known as Mynydd Hiraethog in Welsh) appear almost deserted and bleakly beautiful, but are home to some spectacular wildlife. Black and red grouse live here, as do stunning raptors like the hen harrier and merlin. A walk around the reserve can give the visitor a chance of an encounter they won't forget.
Lower down, close to the lake, the birds are those typically found in conifer woodlands. Crossbills live here all year round, their crossed bills being utilised to prise open pine cones to get at the seeds inside, their only food. Lesser Redpolls and siskins are common, too.
Summer visitors include tree pipit, whinchat, willow warbler, and wood warbler. A visit in spring will find the woods alive with beautiful birdsong. The conifer woodland surrounding the lake is also home to red squirrels; one of the few places in Wales where they can still be found.
A visit to the reserve is best commenced at the visitor centre (open 9am to 5pm during the summer, different hours may apply at other times). The visitor centre has displays and videos about the lake's construction, as well as an adventure playground for the kids. The café serves reasonable food, for reasonable (for a visitor attraction, that is) prices. The stunning view from the café whilst you're enjoying your food is worth a bit extra, in my opinion.
Walking is one of the key activities available at Llyn Brenig. There are several themed walks, including the ten miles long 'round the lake' walk. There is also an archaeological trail where the visitor will discover a series of burial mounds and stone cairns dating back to 1600BC (imagine what it must have been like, living in these upland areas without the comforts we have now, over 3,000 years ago!). A leaflet describing this walk is available from the visitor centre.
Llyn Brenig is justifiably famous for trout fishing, indeed the world fly fishing championships have been held here. Day tickets start at £14.50 and boat hire is available. The lake is stocked mainly with rainbow trout, but brown trout and some tiger trout are present, too. During the winter, anglers can fish for some of the massive pike that live in the lake which grow fat on the stocked trout.
Mountain biking is popular here, too. Many of the trails around the lake are suitable for bikes, and many visitors make use of them to cycle in the spectacular scenery.
The weather at Llyn Brenig can be harsh, however. The lake lies at an altitude of around 1,400 feet, so is always noticeably colder than at sea level. Being in the mountains, the weather can be changeable, so the visitor should be appropriately prepared.
With all the activities described above, Llyn Brenig can get pretty busy during the summer. However, with the lake's perimeter being over 9.5 miles long and irregularly shaped, it's easy to find peace and quiet once you're away from the hustle and bustle of the visitor centre.
A walk or bike ride around the lake will give the visitor seeking peace and quiet, all the solitude they could want. On a sunny day, with the birds singing in the woods and little else to be heard, these moorlands could be a million miles from anywhere.
With the excellent parking, good facilities, stunning scenery, and varied activities, Llyn Brenig really does have something for almost everyone. If you fancy a day out, and you're in the area, this would be well worth visiting.
The reservoir is situated amoung 920 acres of moorland and forest in the heart of the Denbigh Moors.