Cefn Bryn

Cefn Bryn, a 5-mile long Old Red Sandstone ridge commonly called the 'backbone of Gower', is a dominant feature of the Gower landscape being the second highest point in the peninsula (186m). The name Cefn Bryn is Welsh, literally meaning ridge hill. Crossing the ridge of the hill, banked by common land either side and a large pool called Broad Pool, is the road from Cilibion to Reynoldston (once known as Old Coal Road or Red Road). This road is locally reknowned for its wandering sheep, wild ponies and cows, and its stretch of thrilling swells and dips in the tarmac caused by swallets and sink-holes in the limestone.

Cefn Bryn

The highest point of the road intersects with the ridge summit, where an unmarked grassy carpark provides car travellers a place to stop safely, admire the views or take a walk along the footpaths across the commons. One of these footpaths, a well-beaten track, leads northwards towards the main attraction of Cefn Bryn, a large Neolithic monument called Arthur's Stone. Another well-known footpath can be accessed from the south side of the carpark and follows the summit of the ridge itself. Named Talbot's Road, this pathway was cut by the wealthy Talbot family of Penrice in the last century.

During the Bronze Age, Cefn Bryn was once again used extensively for ceremonies and rituals. Over sixty small cairns have been found beneath the bracken on the hill, although many of these mounds may be nothing more than a collection of stones cleared by farmers. However, three prominent cairns, north-west of Arthur's Stone, were excavated between 1981 and 1984 proving their role in ancient history.

The largest is Great Carn, a circular heap of stones raised above a central grave.

Great Carn

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