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stevetynant

Dark Sky Site - North of Brecon

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I'm thinking of heading up the B4519 between Brecon and Builth Wells (if I knew how to use Google maps I'd show you) shortly for an evenings star gazing - its about an hour and 20 away from where I live- pretty elevated with panaramic views and hopefully I'll find somewhere where I can pull off road - - just wondered if anyone from Brecon / Powys have any thoughts on suitability.

Looking at the dark sky maps it looks like it could be good and I haven't got a 4x4 so where ever I go its going to have to have reasonable roads - appreciate anyones thoughts on this. http://maps.google.co.uk/maps/ms?msid=212014872302105681885.0004b8de92d9e81068553&msa=0&ll=52.096558,-3.483221&spn=0.00134,0.002411&iwloc=0004b8dea615f02767d47 well heres the map sort of - can't quite get to grips with it but if you zoom into street view and rotate North you'll seea Digger which is by a half standing which is where my initial plan is to head to

cheers folks (can't wait for Blaenavon - want to get out and about now- cue the rain :0) )

Steve

Edited by stevetynant

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to get the exact cor ords right click on the map click whats here, and it should pop up a green arrow, should show the exact cor ords then in the search

looks good though:)

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Thanks Gareth - the difficulty I had was I couldn't do it from the street map niew so I could pinpoint where I wanted the marker to sit but its close as dammit - I'll check out the co-ords when I get home- looking forward to it and kind of nervous at the same time lol.:icon_scratch:

Edited by stevetynant

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I have driven that road late at night a few times and its nice and dark with little traffic. Just type Upper Chapel Brecon. Its the B4520 out of Brecon that splits to The B4519 at Upper Chapel.

Edited by Dai150PL

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Thanks David - thumbs up then? just got to find a quiet spot and hope for the weather now

appreciate the input

Steve

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I spend a lot time each year at the Usk Reservior, that area is nice and dark with options of getting right off the road into the forestry and away from any possible traffic. Will be scouting the area for good locations and will report back to anyone if interested.

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Keep us posted - always better to be away from the traffic and Usks not to far away either

cheers

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I know the road over the Eppynt, I have friends in Lower Chapel. You should get great views between Brecon and Builth, but you'll need to find a spot where car lights wont affect you as that road does get used. Don't attempt it if there is any snow or ice, even with a 4x4, it's pretty isolated out there. THe other issue is that the road goes through the army training range so you aren't supposed to go off the road, so it may be harder to find somewhere away from car lights

The road is pretty windy and slow too. Tell us if you find a good layby and I'll join you!

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Hi Capt - found a layby - its a viewing point actually - plenty of room to park the car and open skies then there looks like theres a picnic area below the pull in - so should be out of the way of the car headlights and I can't imagine anyones gong to be having their sandwiches there in the dark

I've tried to post on Google maps but I just can't figure it out but if you look on the other post I did with the map - theres a derelict pub the Drovers Arms nearby - just drive past, then theres (heading away from Brecon towards Builth) a hardstanding on the left where I was thinking of going then about another 1/2 mile on theres a large tarmac pull in on the right - you can't miss it its the only one of its kind along the road and the small picnic area is just below it off the road.

I'm thinking of getting there fairly early to find my barings just before the dark sets in hopefully - Originally my plan was Friday this week but looking at the forecast its set for Rain all weekend so might have to put if off for a week or two - would love the company - if I'm going to go I'll leave you a pm with my phone number.

Thanks for the input much appreciated - fingers crossed for clear skies

Steve

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I wouldnt mind a nights observing out Brecon way,let me know how you get on Steve.

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Will do Matt - weather not looking too good for Friday but Sat / Sunday looking better - your welcome to join me if you fancy a night out. Strangely enough I just bought a dark sky map from Phillips- it shows the area I'm looking at is in the second darkest category accross Wales- the darkest is in Ceredigion - which is great cos thats where I spend most of my summers- can see the scope heading West quite a bit this year.

Edited by stevetynant

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I cant make it this weekend,ive been ill all week.Sat night does look promising weather wise

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no probs Matt-another time perhaps- if I make it I'll try and write up a report of how suitable it is- never done it before so perhaps if I try this and then manage to get to Blaenavon in March I'll have some idea of what works- hope its nothing too serious and you can get out and about soon

cheers

Steve

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Excellent - weather permitting I'm going to get there for about 5:30 I guess to make sure I'm set up in the light - and see how it goes from there - I'll leave you a pm before I go tommorrow just to confirm.

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I spend a lot time each year at the Usk Reservior, that area is nice and dark with options of getting right off the road into the forestry and away from any possible traffic. Will be scouting the area for good locations and will report back to anyone if interested.

I've used a site near the Usk Reservoir which is superb. Its the best site I've used - the darkest skies, no surrounding lights, no through traffic and no sky obstructions. I knew of it because I quite often do an off-road mountain bike ride around that area. The only drawback is that it takes about 75 minutes to drive there from my house so a good forecast of clear skies is essential. Let me know if you're interested and I'll PM you the site co-ordinates :-)

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Miles from me, but if you head from Brecon to Usk reservoir and then another few miles you get to Llanddeusant. It has the red kite feeding station.

Turn left there and about mile down is where my sisters new small holding and campsite will be. They got the farmhouse roof replaced this week so the campsite will be ready late this year or early next year. They are astronomer friendly. I'll post more once they are up and running.

Sky is so dark there I can never find my car without a torch.

Cheers

Ian

Edited by iwatkins

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Hi David, am more than happy to meet up one night or day as I am a mountain biker myself. Currently off riding with a hand injury, going nuts having to walk past the bike everyday( mongoose khyber ).

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Hey Ian will it have electric hookups for caravans ? i would be intrested in a reccy.Sometime next month we will have a evening up that site David.

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Not that kind of campsite I'm afraid. I think they call it "rough camping" ? Basically for people who can carry or drive their accommodation in for the night that doesn't require towing of caravans. They are funny like that.

Cheers

Ian

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... brother in law has a 195mm refractor mounted on a az mount 24/7. It weighs 29lbs. But lovely views.

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We'll have to go for a ride when your hand is better David. I'll let you know the next time I'm gonna venture up to the reservoir and maybe we'll meet up for some riding or observing.

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Sounds good, will send you a pm with an email address. :D

Suss a site out up that way for a group meet guys if its possible and you dont mind (if you want to keep your site private and just for your own viewing I completely understand that as well - Wales is a big place so no probs).

I'm spending a bit of times in the evening looking out for another dark sky site that a few of us could go to a bit further into mid/west Wales - god bless Google street view - plenty of easily accessable places with potential but getting somewhere where off road is easily accessed not quite so easy.

I've never seen skies like I did on the Epynt last week - would be a good share for a few I think :(

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No secret handsakes, only private as in no car lights is the plan steve. I would be happy for a group meet around that area, as Its like my second home up there. Only problem with that area, weather forcasts are a waste of time.

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