There is an attractive walk above Prestatyn, with the chance of finding a few Carboniferous Limestone fossils. On a sunny day, this location is idyllic, even if the fossils can be few and far between.
♦ Parking can be found at the northern end of Prestatyn Hillside, as shown on the Ordnance Survey map. From the car park, walk a few metres uphill, until you will see a sign, which indicates the start of the walk.
♦ Walk the length of the escarpment and examine any limestone blocks that you see along the way. At the end of the escarpment it is worth carrying on to Graig Fawr for the panoramic views that the top of this hill offers.
♦ Alternatively, walk back by the path at the base of the escarpment.
♦ Ref: 53.30693°N, 4.06719°W
FIND FREQUENCY: ♦♦ – By investigating the occasional limestone block at the side of the path, you are bound to come across a few fossils, but finds are generally in frequent.
CHILDREN: ♦♦ – The circular walk described here is just under 5km long, over undulating terrain. In places, the path is not fenced and there are steep drops to the side. Children should be supervised at all times.
ACCESS: ♦♦♦♦♦ – The walk is well maintained, but its length and hilly nature may put some people off.
TYPE: – Fossils can be found in blocks of limestone that can be seen in places next to the path.
Occasional crinoid, brachiopod and coral fossils can be found in blocks along this walk. However, do not expect to come home with a large haul of fossils. Specimens should not be collected unless small and you should not hammer larger blocks. However, the views on this walk are stunning and make up for the relative lack of fossils.
The Carboniferous Limestone at Prestatyn is Visean in age. It is part of the Clwyd Limestone Group, which is around 330myrs old. There is a diverse range of limestone facies exhibiting local dolomitisation, with subordinate sandstone and mudstone units.
The ancient Carboniferous limestone outcrop of Craig Fawr dominates over the town of Prestatyn. Craig Fawr along with Moel Hiraddug (another limestone outcrop) are easily accessible from Penisar Mynydd Caravan Park and provide a lovely walk.
The geology of the area records the initiation and growth of a carbonate platform along the northern flank of the Wales-Brabant Massif.
A drink should be taken, as the walk takes a couple of hours to complete. In places, there are unguarded steep slopes next to the path.
A map, bags and newspaper may be needed here. You should also take a drink and a mobile phone.
Free access – the walk is along a well maintained and advertised path.