The Afon Sychryd is a small river in the county borough of Rhondda Cynon Taf, South Wales. Although it is a short river, with a total length of just 3 miles, it is notable for the gorge and two waterfalls through which it flows.
The river has two upper arms, the first arises near Penderyn, which has been dammed to create a small reservoir, known as Penderyn Reservoir. The second arm starts just below Graig y Llyn and is known locally as the Nant Gwrangon; it flows past the village of Rhigos and through Cwm Wyrfa on the edge of the Brecon Beacons National Park.
Its lower section is cut into a spectacular gorge beneath Craig-y-Ddinas or Dinas Rock, site of an Iron Age hillfort and of the once-famous Dinas Silica Mine. The gorge is well used by gorge-scramblers though there has been concern that their activities can cause damage to the rare bryophytes and mosses that colonise the rocks in this shaded valley and for which it has been designated as a special area of conservation.
There are several waterfalls of note on the river including those at Pwll y Crochan near the A645 and Sgydau Sychryd beneath Craig-y-Ddinas. The former is hardly accessible to the public but the latter is easily seen from the Sychryd All-ability Trail which follows a former tramroad up the river from the car park at Craig-y-Ddinas. It is falls such as these that have resulted in the wider area becoming known as Waterfall Country.
- "Water Framework Directive - River Basin Management Plans". What's in your Backyard. Environment Agency. Retrieved 12 July 2014.
- Ordnance Survey Explorer map OL12 'Brecon Beacons National Park: western area'
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