The Hidden Way that led through the Encircling Mountains towards Gondolin started at the point where the bed of the Dry River flowed out of the darkness under the Mountains. That way led through a dark tunnel, guarded against intruders, that ended in a strong wooden portcullis. That was the Gate of Wood, the First Gate of the Seven that guarded the way into Gondolin. Opening at a touch, the First Gate allowed passage out of the darkness and into the high and narrow ravine of Orfalch Echor, leading on through six more Gates to the plain of Tumladen and to Gondolin itself.
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