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Report - - Moel Fferna Slate Mine, Wales - June '18 | Mines and Quarries | 28DaysLater.co.uk

Report - Moel Fferna Slate Mine, Wales - June '18



alex17595

Under a mountain
28DL Full Member
#1
A report from a visit back in June which I could only just be bothered to write up now.

I have tried to visit before but there was 5 feet of snow on top of the mountain and it was getting dark so I gave up. This time we went during storm Hector which surprisingly turned out to be a 10mph refreshing breeze. After a 2hr drive we walked up and first visited Penarth slate mine which is worthy of its own report (didn't walk straight up the incline this time.) Continuing on we walked around the edge of the Ceiriog forest eventually finding a way in to it - it is a fair distance to Moel with a fair bit of height gain! During the walk between them we saw the only 2 people since leaving the car. Walking for another mile or so out of the forest you reach the top and Moel Fferna is spread out in front you.

After arriving we had a wander around the building remains, now little more the heaps of slate with chunks of twisted metal. There are a few information boards around telling you about the buildings and illustrations of the tramway. Next task was finding the entrance, I knew it was by a tree and that was it, I chose some random clump of trees up hill from us and begin to climb the incline. Walking along the top level of the incline we found the remains of the adit entrance which has been filled in but there is still a slight breeze emanating from the portal.

Eventually the entrance shaft was found and it was my job to set up the ladder - which was £30 on Ebay. For a change I made the right decision to buy a sling to wrap around the tree and hang the ladder of that. Then my fear of heights came back, not good when you are on the edge of a 10m hole! After about 10 mins I plucked up the courage to go down, which is not as bad as I first thought.

We had a good wander around some of the levels and the Incline which is still in very good nick; Wagon bodies, rollers and the drum still remain. The main aim was to find the underground bridge which we did find and was too chicken to cross, at least without some safety gear.

Very Brief History:
Mine was opened in 1860s and most of the slate was mined rather quarried. The mine was served by the Deeside tramway which was gravity worked the three miile down to the Ruabon - Dollgelau mainline at Glyndyfrdwy, horses returned the empties daily. In 1898 184 men were employed, in 1937-8 100. The mine closed in 1960.

http://www.coflein.gov.uk/en/site/308669/details/moel-fferna-slate-mine

Now for the interesting bit: the photographs.

Starting of with some exteriors.

This show the incline down to the Deeside tramway, there was originally a bridge over this.







On to the underground part. First of is the room directly off the ventilation shaft.



Not sure what this shaft was for but I threw a stone down it and it goes a fairway down.



Gate which my mate climbed through even though it was unlocked :D



There is plenty of graffiti around the mine.





Next up is the impressive roof support which is in the style of what you would see in a coal mine. (also spooky ghosts)





My friend decided to vape inside, could is probably still there.





I couldn't get a photo with the bridge and the floor in as the camera wouldn't focus :(











and finally my mate going almost going arse over tit down a trip.



Will have to head out again soon for a revisit without tiring myself out in penarth first.
 

dweeb

Super Moderator
Staff member
Moderator
#2
Not bad! Well shot, it can be tricky lighting slate mines.

Didn't fancy the bridge then?!
 

Praada

28DL Full Member
28DL Full Member
#5
Don't suppose you found a wallet down there did you haha? Lost mine last year down there somewhere, balls to using a ladder down the shaft as well ropes are much much easier, some great photo's considering how dark it is in those slate mines :) Any dead sheep at the base of the shaft?
 

alex17595

Under a mountain
28DL Full Member
#6
Not bad! Well shot, it can be tricky lighting slate mines.

Didn't fancy the bridge then?!
I could do with a floodlight rather than a spot light to help with lighting, not easy trying to get the light equal.

Didn't fancy the bridge no, there is a big split in one of the beams and I didn't have my harness so I thought better of it.


Don't suppose you found a wallet down there did you haha? Lost mine last year down there somewhere, balls to using a ladder down the shaft as well ropes are much much easier, some great photo's considering how dark it is in those slate mines :) Any dead sheep at the base of the shaft?

was there any money left in the wallet ;)

No dead sheep at the bottom just a pile of leaves.
 
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Praada

28DL Full Member
28DL Full Member
#8
you can get within 4km of the shaft with a car and take an easy track by foot, this brings you to the top of the hill the shaft is on, overlooking the old buildings and spoil heaps. The hardest part is getting out after exploring the complete mine workings (can spend 6 hours in there easily if you start at the upper levels and work across and down to the bottom levels) energy levels drop and the climb is quite strenuous to say its only 30ft.
 

alex17595

Under a mountain
28DL Full Member
#9
Is it this road?

moelffern.png



There is a road that goes to the right of deeside slab quarry, at the A5 this road has a sign saying unsuitable for motors. Is this a public road?
 

Praada

28DL Full Member
28DL Full Member
#12
walk the red line mate its the easiest and shortest route to it from an accessible road, road isnt tarmac but my ford focus made it with a few scrapes on 40mm lowering springs...
 

Praada

28DL Full Member
28DL Full Member
#13
oh and to cross the bridge is a waste of time and big risk as the other side is blocked and leads to a big drop lol... its best to stand on it and have someone go to the lower level for an epic photo :D
 

alex17595

Under a mountain
28DL Full Member
#14
Thanks for that its much more worth a trip without a 6 mile hike as well!

Do you come up the road from the Glyn Ceiriog side of the hill?


Had a look on OS maps and its 3.7 mile round trip with 600ft ascent vs what we did which was 5.9m and 1475ft ascent.
 
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johnny gomez

28DL Full Member
28DL Full Member
#15
you can get within 4km of the shaft with a car and take an easy track by foot, this brings you to the top of the hill the shaft is on, overlooking the old buildings and spoil heaps. The hardest part is getting out after exploring the complete mine workings (can spend 6 hours in there easily if you start at the upper levels and work across and down to the bottom levels) energy levels drop and the climb is quite strenuous to say its only 30ft.
in that case ... :thumb