Wednesday, 31 December 2014

Mapping Mountains – 2014 Retrospective

Towards the end of 2013 the Mapping Mountains blog was activated from a two year private slumber when experimenting with uploads and blog style was dispensed with, in favour of the blog becoming public.

Activating the Mapping Mountains blog has been one of the best things I have done as it has given me an opportunity to pursue my passion for landscape photography, writing, surveying and hill listing. 

The blog was something that I had not originally envisaged as it was suggested by Ruth Magness, who I would like to thank for her patience and encouragement.  Thanks are also given to Delyth Andrew who in years past also encouraged me with all manner of hill related subjects.

Although a year in review for 2014, it was late 2013 on 28th November when the Preface for the ongoing article detailing The History of Welsh Hill Lists was made public, this was the first blog post and in a year that saw 22, 335 page views it was the first of 200 posts that were uploaded to the blog.  The first Trimble survey followed shortly afterward on the 15th December 2013 with the summit of Cyrniau being the first hill surveyed. 

There are many reasons why the blog was activated, one being the purchase of a Trimble GeoXH 6000.  I’d been interested in this equipment since first hearing that DoBIH were considering accepting data produced by John Fitzgerald who had the same piece of machinery.  This was in the early part of 2013 but it wasn’t until 1st December of that year that the finance to buy such equipment became available.

Once bought it was a steep learning curve, but one which was fun, so come along for the ride and let’s see what happened in 2014.

Firstly the streets of Mold in north-east Wales heightened the excitement levels as when in the middle of discovering a new P30 the Trimble took on the weight of a car and survived being run over.  This was rather unexpected, both the running over part and the surviving part.  Thinking back on it, it was a surreal experience and one that I hope is not repeated.

Secondly, after seven years of enjoying the company of John Barnard and Graham Jackson in G&J Surveys and after much hard work by the three of us, the opportunity to have a programme concentrating on one of our surveys being broadcast on television presented itself.  The programme was entitled ‘Snowdon – Climbing New Heights’ and was broadcast on ITV Wales and was produced by Aled Llŷr of Slam Media and Stephen Edwards of CREAD Cyf.  It was a great experience and one that will be with me for many years to come.

During the year Aled Williams and I were invited by Lady Willoughby to visit Grimsthorpe Castle for lunch and to view an old Estate Survey book to the Gwydir Estate.  This was part of our continuing research into Welsh upland place-names and formed an integral part of this research, along with visits to the National Library at Aberystwyth and many local enquiries with a number of farmers.  Aled is co-ordinating this research which will be made public in the hill lists we are jointly compiling and it is hoped in future book publications.

As the Mapping Mountains blog progressed a number of new pages were added, including one for ‘Guest Contributor’.  This was based on an idea I had a few years ago and one I hoped to pursue when an Editor of DoBIH, unfortunately that tenure was short lived, so the Guest Contributor concept was pursued through the blog, and it has proved a great success with the page views increasing each time a new contributor post is uploaded.  There have been six articles published so far, with another two waiting publication and a number of others in production.

The blog has also enabled me to create pages that suit a specific subject, and there are now pages for Hill Reclassifications, The History of Welsh Hill Lists, Spreadsheets, Videos, Various Articles and English Hill Lists to name a few.  However, one thing missing from the blog itself is hill lists, it is hoped that in 2015 this will be rectified with a number planned to appear during the forthcoming year.

Although the blog is a conduit for a number of hill related things that I have produced, its impetus is led by surveying, and during the past year there have been a number of hill reclassifications instigated by surveying with the Trimble with the Pedwarau seeing the majority of change.  The following are the major reclassifications from Trimble surveys during 2014:

Ynys Hir (SH 566 396) - new 30m – 99m P30

Pt. 37m, Ynys Hir (SH 566 398) – new 30m – 99m P30

Ynys Fadog (SH 564 398) – new 30m – 99m Sub-P30

Pt. 452m (SJ 229 443) – new Sub-Pedwar

Y Garn (SH 758 375) – new Pedwar

Moelfre (SO 121 759) – deleted Sub-Pedwar

Bera Mawr (SH 674 682) – deleted Pumau

Cefn Perfa (SO 173 579) – new Pedwar

Pt. 388m (SN 907 900) – new 300m P30

Carreg y Big (SN 902 909) – deleted Sub-Pedwar

Craig y Ganllwyd (SH 707 258) – new Pedwar

Bryn y Beili (SJ 235 643) – new 100m P30

Twyn Walter (SN 828 175) – deleted Pumau

Derlwyn (SH 588 586) – new Sub-Pedwar

Pt. 499m (SH 665 310) – new Pedwar

The Cold Piece (SO 338 996) – deleted Four

Mynydd Poeth (SH 953 513) – new Pedwar

Ynys Tywyn (SH 571 385) - new 30m - 99m Sub P30

The Trimble also instigated Foel (SH 450 506) in becoming a new Hump and Moel Garegog (SJ 216 525) becoming a new Sub-Hump and it split a double Hump and triple Hump for good measure.

As the year progressed from the exceedingly wet winter into the warmth of Spring and Summer I found that walking with Mark Trengove usually meant late evenings on the hill.  These were either preceded or followed by a leisurely bite to eat in a pub or restaurant and they soon became one of the year’s highlights.  The late evenings in particular gave me an opportunity to be on the hill at sunset, which being an early morning hill walker was something I was unused to.  A number of these walks have given sublime sun sets and many that will remain in my memory for a long time to come.

The variety of conditions found on Welsh hills were shown by another of the year’s highlights, these were walks with Aled Williams as we investigated the islands of Traeth Mawr.  This is the land that in years past was reclaimed from the sea on the outskirts of Porthmadog.  Throughout this land are small islands dotted across the landscape, all are individual in nature but they seem to have one common factor and that is that they are difficult to ascend because of their undergrowth.  Each trip to these islands has brought its own excitement and I look forward to more visits with Aled to other Traeth Mawr islands in 2015.

Another surveying highlight of the year was visiting and surveying the most remote spot and the remotest hill in mainland Wales.  Each is situated in the expansive southern grasslands of Y Mynydd Du in south Wales.

When I bought the Trimble and activated the blog I hoped that 100 P30’s would be surveyed by the end of 2014, this has been exceeded with 150 P30’s surveyed in all.  Many of these also included the respective bylchau.  There have also been a number of subs surveyed and P15’s and anything else that looked of interest.  When including datum point surveys the overall total for the year is in excess of 540 individual surveys.  I’m not sure I can match that in 2015.

Let’s hope that 2015 is as successful for the Mapping Mountains blog as 2014 has been, but above all I’d like to thank all the people who visit the blog and find it of interest.  I hope you enjoy the New Year ahead and get pleasure from the hills you visit.

Myrddyn Phillips

Tuesday, 30 December 2014

Mapping Mountains – Trimble Surveys – Pen Llŷn

28.12.14  Mynydd Mawr (SH 140 258) and Mynydd y Gwyddel (SH 141 251)   

Mynydd Mawr (SH 140 258)
At the end of Wales the Pen Llŷn (Lleyn Peninsula) butts down steeply to the sea and looks out toward Ynys Enlli (Bardsey Island) which in medieval times was a major centre of pilgrimage.  The land at the north-western tip of Wales is dotted with small hills, many excellent in nature and with coastal views it reminds one of the Dingle peninsula in Ireland, albeit slightly less dramatic.  However, there is a feeling of gentle solitude to these hills where land and sea meet.

Having visited Clip y Gylfinhir in the morning and relaxed with a panini in one of the pubs in Aberdaron we headed toward the western fringes of the Llŷn and the car park at the base of Mynydd Mawr.

The summit of Mynydd Mawr was used as a lookout station during the 2nd World War and the access road to the building that remains positioned on the summit is maintained and contours its way up the hill.  As Mark got his boots on I slowly plodded up this road as I wanted to get two data sets, one from beside the small building and another on a high point a hundred metres or so away.

The first of these two points has an embedded boulder at its highest point, as the Trimble gathered its allotted five minutes of data Mark and Aled joined me.  Soon it was placed on a point close to the building for its second data set.

Gathering data at the summit of Mynydd Mawr
Once the second data set had been collected we found a spot on the opposite side of a wall, overlooking the steep drop into the sea and did an interview with the digi-camera with Mark filming whilst Aled and I gave details to a forthcoming Europeaklist booklet that is due for publication in January / February 2015.

As the filming wrapped up we headed south-east away from the road and down to the connecting bwlch with Mynydd y Gwyddel.  During the descent Ynys Enlli was always there, in vision, a darkened silhouette against the lowering western sun, aloof in bulk it stood out to sea, a haven for pilgrimage from past religious to modern Marilyn bagger.

Heading toward the bwlch of Mynydd y Gwyddel
Although small in area the connecting bwlch between Mynydd Mawr and Mynydd y Gwyddel proved difficult to pinpoint as it had a high stone wall positioned in an earthen embankment cutting the valley to valley traverse.  We each assessed where we thought the critical bwlch lay and as Mark and Aled made their way up Mynydd y Gwyddel I climbed up the embankment and over a fence into a close cropped field where we had judged the critical bwlch to be situated.  I chose a spot a few metres from a caravan and waited for the five minutes of data to be collected before joining Mark and Aled on the summit.

Gathering data at the bwlch of Mynydd y Gwyddel
As I approached the summit I spotted Mark and Aled sitting about 50 metres from the high point looking out to sea as the sun shone bright.  Next to the high point sat a couple who were soaking in the view and who looked as if they were their long term until the sun set.  I said ‘Hi’ and apologetically explained what I wanted to do, they very kindly moved lower down the hill and I had the summit to myself to set the Trimble up and gather the all-important data.

Gathering data at the summit of Mynydd y Gwyddel
Just as the last of the 300 points of data were collected Aled stood up and put his rucksack on and walked toward me, Mark soon joined and we stood beside the high point of the hill and looked out to Ynys Enlli as the sun sank lower radiating its stream of golden colour across the sea.  Although this was a beautiful image and one that held our attention for the next forty minutes, it was the view farther west that caught us, as a slender line of hills were on show; the Wicklow Mountains in Ireland.

Between cloud and sea - the Wicklow Mountains
We’d seen the Isle of Man from the summit of Mynydd Mawr and squinting across the sea we thought that some shape of land could just be discerned, but as the sun sank lower the becalmed conditions of light now gave us a cascade of hills lined up south of Dublin.  I hadn’t seen the Wicklow Mountains from Wales for a number of years and this brought back memories of when I was on Bera Mawr in the Carneddau with Ed and we looked out from a snow bound hill across the Irish Sea to Ireland.  This was at a time when I was visiting Ireland regularly and I had just completed a 28 day trip taking in 101 of the 2,000ft hills.  At that time I knew the Wicklow Mountains quite well and as I stood on top of Bera Mawr with Ed, the clarity of visibility was so good that I could pick out individual hills and name them.  Today the outline of these hills were not as vivid as when I saw them with Ed, but Mark, Aled and I stood for a number of minutes looking toward their outline.

The Wicklow Mountains on the western horizon
We were on the verge of departing to head toward the next hill when up sauntered Asha Pond and Clare Richards, both originated from Australia and are now living in London.  By the time we had introduced ourselves and chatted the sun had sank lower and was casting magical light on the land.  Soon we were joined by Guto Thomas, a local farmer who works the land close to Mynydd Rhiw and who is a member of the Bardsey Island Trust.

We were joined on the summit by Asha Pond and Clare Richards
By now the light had dimmed and a chill heralding night had started to ebb onto proceedings, but the sun kept its captivation as it slowly sank ever seaward.  We all stood chattering away and looking west as the sun crept into a thin strip of layered cloud with light emanating out.

Slowly sinking seaward as the chill of the night set in

Sun setting beyond Ynys Enlli
To be here, at the end of Wales, on such a lovely day, with an unexpected chance encounter and watching the sun set next to Ynys Enlli was quite a magical experience. 

I’ll leave you with a few uncaptioned images as the light faded and the sun disappeared.

Survey Result:

Mynydd Mawr

Summit Height:  160.0m (converted to OSGM15)

Summit Grid Reference:  SH 14021 25869

Drop:  96m (Subhump status confirmed)

Dominance:  60.00%

Mynydd y Gwyddel

Summit Height:  97.4m (converted to OSGM15)

Summit Grid Reference:  SH 14183 25164

Bwlch Height:  74.4m (converted to OSGM15)

Bwlch Grid Reference:  SH 14238 25454

Drop:  23.0m (30–99m Sub-Twmpau status confirmed)

Dominance:  23.63% 


For further details please consult the Trimble survey spreadsheet click {here}

Monday, 29 December 2014

Mapping Mountains – Trimble Surveys – Pen Llŷn

28.12.14  Clip y Gylfinhir (SH 223 284)   

Clip y Gylfinhir (SH 223 284)
As Mark drove toward the western tip of Pen Llŷn (Lleyn Peninsula), Aled talked about a hill that stood a chance of becoming a P30, it was positioned just to the south of Mynydd y Rhiw.  Although our plans were not set firm we had discussed a route between three hills that was feasible this time of year, and as the skies were bathed in blue it would only be lack of daylight hours that curtailed this plan.  However, spontaneity can be fun and soon Aled was directing Mark through the narrow network of lanes toward the car park immediately below Clip y Gylfinhir.

Clip y Gylfinhir (one translation of the name is the Curlew’s crag) is listed as a 200m Sub-P30 with its bwlch contouring and 270m summit spot height implies that it has 28m – 29m of drop.  As Mark drove up the last icy road toward the car park the hill loomed up conically shaped and well proportioned.

Once parked, Aled headed into the heather to assess the direction of the bwlch as it swings down from Mynydd y Rhiw and ascends from the small community of Rhiw.  The small car park is also the hub for a meeting of tracks; these at least gave perspective towards the elevation of the bwlch and broke the heathery slopes.

As Aled assessed the bwlch Mark headed into the heather to photograph the hill without its adjacent wireless and radio transmitting mast in the scene, he then headed up the hill.

Mark on the summit of Clip y Gylfinhir
The point Aled had reached in the heather was good to pinpoint the critical bwlch but it would only be from the summit where we would have an aerial view of the scene.  Not wanting to keep Mark waiting, a spot close to the meeting of tracks adjacent to the earthen car park was chosen and I set the Trimble up.

Once five minutes of data were collected we headed up the hill to join Mark on the summit.  From the car park a small path veers away from the access road to the transmitting mast and heads straight up the hill, I left the path to take photos of Aled as he gained height on steepening broken ground.

Aled on the ascent of Clip y Gylfinhir
The summit area consists of a number of embedded rocks, the highest being easily identified, and as the Trimble had its internal antenna aligned to the high point of the hill and started to log data I stood back and took in the view.

Gathering data at the summit of Clip y Gylfinhir
To the north the continuation of the main track from the car park headed up to the summit of Mynydd y Rhiw, to the west the agricultural lowlands culminated in the last upthrusts of hills before the end of Wales and Ynys Enlli (Bardsey Island), the immediate eastern horizon was dominated by the great sweep of Porth Neigwl (Hell’s Mouth) and away inland stood a line of hills which were all snow-capped.

Mynydd y Rhiw (SH 228 293)

The lowlands of the western Llŷn leading to Ynys Enlli

Porth Neigwl (Hell's Mouth)

Yr Wyddfa dominating the central view
After packing the Trimble away we descended the hill’s southern slopes toward the transmitting mast where I walked into the heather and gorse next to the paved access road to try and get a photo of Mark and Aled against Clip y Gylfinhir.

Heading toward the bwlch
We had a good view from the summit of the lay of land around the area of the bwlch and could easier follow the southerly ridge of Mynydd y Rhiw as it heathered its way down toward the connecting land of Clip y Gylfinhir.  From the vantage point of the summit the hill to hill traverse looked as if it headed into an adjacent field toward a metal cattle feed which was conveniently placed and gave us a point to use for reference.

It was this hill to hill line that we now headed for, judging that the low point was on the heathery side of a double fenced and walled boundary and probably not in the closely cropped grassy adjacent field; the Trimble was set up and soon achieved its required 0.1m before it began to log data.

The set up position for the second data set
When I arrived back at Mark’s car we decided to head into Aberdaron for coffee and a bite to eat before revising our plans for further hills to the west.

Survey Result:

Clip y Gylfinhir

Summit Height:  267.8m (converted to OSGM15) (significant height revision) (height from subsequent Trimble survey)

Summit Grid Reference:  SH 22395 28472 (from subsequent Trimble survey)

Bwlch Height:  240.1m (converted to OSGM15)

Bwlch Grid Reference:  SH 22514 28524

Drop:  27.7m (200m Sub-Twmpau status confirmed)

Dominance:  10.34%

For details on the second summit survey of Clip y Gylfinhir

For further details please consult the Trimble survey spreadsheet click {here}

Saturday, 27 December 2014

Mapping Mountains – Hill Reclassifications – Y Pedwarau

Mynydd Poeth (SH 953 513) - 400m Sub-Pedwar reclassified to Pedwar

There has been a reclassification of a 400m Sub-Pedwar to a Pedwar recently discovered by surveying with the Trimble GeoXH 6000.  The hill is situated in the Mynydd Hiraethog range and is positioned north of Cerrigydrudion and south of Llyn Brenig.

The hill is named Mynydd Poeth (SH 953 513), and it had two possibilities for the position of its critical bwlch, one to the west and another to its east of its summit, with both leading to higher ground and both with bwlch contouring on Ordnance Survey maps between 380m – 390m.

Mynydd Poeth (417m summit spot height on Ordnance Survey maps) had been listed as a 400m Sub-Pedwar with c 29m of drop based on the critical bwlch being east of the summit at SH 957 509 and with an estimated height of c 388m, with its western bwlch at SH 950 513 having an estimated height of c 387m.  The hill is currently listed as a Tump by Mark Jackson with 30m of drop based on its critical bwlch being placed at SH 950 512.

Each bwlch position was surveyed with the following results:

Eastern bwlch:  387.6m (converted to OSGM15) at SH 95707 50953.

Western bwlch:  386.9m (converted to OSGM15) at SH 95069 51315.

Although the estimation of each bwlch height is in good accordance with the survey result produced by the Trimble GeoXH 6000, the hill qualifies for Pedwar status as the known summit height has increased by 2.3m from its 417m map height at SH 95403 51068 to its summit position at SH 95375 51301 which has a height of 419.300m (converted to OSGM15).

This now brings the overall total for the Y Pedwarau to 452 hills with five additions since publication of the list by Europeaklist in May 2013.  The hill will be added to the Y Pedwarau list in the 2nd edition that will hopefully be published by Europeaklist.  The list of Pedwar hills is also available from the Haroldstreet website.

The full details for the hill are:

Cardinal Hill:  Mwdwl-eithin

Summit Height:  419.3m (converted to OSGM15)

Name:  Mynydd Poeth

OS 1:50,000 map:  116

Summit Grid Reference:  SH 953 513

Drop:  31.7m (converted to OSGM15)

Mynydd Poeth (SH 953 513) has now been confirmed as a Pedwar
For details on the survey that reclassified this hill to Pedwar status please click {here}

Myrddyn Phillips and Aled Williams (December 2014)

Friday, 26 December 2014

Mapping Mountains – Trimble Surveys – Mynydd Hiraethog

24.12.14  Mynydd Poeth (SH 953 513) and Llechwedd (SH 969 506)   

Llechwedd (SH 969 506)
With the potatoes set on a veerrrry low roast I met Mark in Cerrigydrudion just before 10.00am for festive activity on some Hiraethog Pedwar hills.  Mark had suggested visiting Mynydd Poeth, Llechwedd and Craig Hir (SH 960 544).

These hills are situated north of Cerrigydrudion with Mynydd Poeth and Llechwedd to the south of Llyn Brenig with each positioned either side of the B4501, whilst Craig Hir is further north and positioned between Llyn Brenig and the Alwen Reservoir.

Each hill was of numerical interest as Mynydd Poeth is listed as a Sub-Pedwar with c 29m of drop but a Tump with 30m of drop, and with higher hills to its west and east and no spot height on either connecting bwlch which are both between 380m – 390m, it meant that each bwlch would need surveying.  Llechwedd has a summit spot height of 450m which is embedded in forestry and it also has a 449m top outside of the conifer plantation, whist Craig Hir is immersed in mature forestry and would test the capability of the Trimble to attain its 0.1m logging accuracy and with a height of 453m based on a 1,485ft (452.6m) from an old Ordnance Survey 1:10,560 map, it would be interesting to compare this height with that of the Trimble’s if the mature conifers allowed data to be logged.

We parked just off of the road at the start of a forest track at SH 957 509, where one or two vehicles can be left.  As Mark donned his wellies I nipped over the adjacent fence and walked up the valley to valley direction from south to north on the west side of the road.  I’d examined this bwlch in a Google car the previous evening and judged that the direction of the bwlch went from one side of the road to the other and that the critical bwlch lay behind a small mound which is given a separate 390m contour ring on Ordnance Survey maps.

One of two positions that data were gathered at the easterly bwlch from Mynydd Poeth
When Mark joined me I had just completed the first data set taken from the easterly bwlch from Mynydd Poeth, Mark independently assessed the area of the bwlch and we decided that a second data set was required and the Trimble was positioned slightly south from its first placement.  As it gathered data Mark headed upto the summit, leaving me to scribble as much information relevant to the Trimble’s chosen position, as it gathered the last of its 300 points I happily took a few photos with the sun casting low light from the south.

As I packed the Trimble away I watched Mark become a small figure cresting the upper slopes of Mynydd Poeth.  Although the weather forecast for the day was good and the sun was casting long shadows, the wind gave a chill to proceedings and as I headed up the hill and joined Mark on the summit I put on a second pair of gloves as it was decidedly wintery on the top.

Mark heading toward the summit of Mynydd Poeth
The summit position was checked against a ten figure grid reference that Mark had input into his hand-held GPS, the Trimble was positioned with its internal antenna aligned with the top of a small embedded rock and once the 0.1m accuracy was attained I pressed ‘Log’ and scampered away from the equipment.

Gathering data at the summit of Mynydd Poeth
Once five minutes of data were collected we headed west down to the second option for the critical bwlch of Mynydd Poeth, this proved to be in a vast blanket bog.  As we walked into this morass I adopted a spread legged stationary surfing position with my body braced at the knee, as I flexed my knees the whole bog wobbled like a ginormous water bed.  Quite a remarkable place and probably the largest blanket bog that I’d had the pleasure to wobble on.

Mark exploring the blanket bog
Mark walked around in the middle of the bog trying to assess the rough position of its critical bwlch, whilst I gained height and dryness of foot to look down on it.  We both thought that a position close to a small patch of standing water was where the critical bwlch lay.  I re-joined the bog as Mark retired to the relatively dry land beside an adjacent fence and I stomped around a bit creating a small patch where the reed grass was flattened, by doing so I hoped to give the Trimble a better chance of picking up signals from orbiting satellites, as I stomped around and set the Trimble up the distinct smell of methane oozed from the bog.

Gathering data at the westerly bwlch from Mynydd Poeth
Once the allocated five minutes of data collector had ended I dived back into the bog to retrieve the Trimble and spent a few seconds wandering around trying to find it, all I could see was reed grass and puddles of water, eventually I stumbled across it, switched it off and we headed back over Mynydd Poeth toward the car and our next hill; Llechwedd.

As we crested the summit of Mynydd Poeth, the view south-westward was dominated by Arennig Fawr which was a grey and sombre shape without the snow of recent days, all gone as the mild westerly’s battled with the cold of high winter air.

Arennig Fawr; grey and sombre
We chose the forest track to make our way up Llechwedd and opted for the open hillside for our descent.  Again, Mark had made a reference to a ten figure grid reference for where a forest ride left the track to head toward the summit of Llechwedd, as we approached this position the southern skies had turned grey and the first of the days showers fell with a mixture of light rain and sleet being the norm.

The forest track to the north of the summit of Llechwedd
We followed the forest ride through copious amounts of heather as it gained height toward the edge of the conifers, once here we followed the edge of the forest hoping to find another ride that headed north close to where the 450m spot height appears on the map.  We couldn’t find it and concluded that the ride must have been covered in new plantings after the last tree felling had taken place.  This meant a conifer bash!

The forest ride leading to open hillside before the conifer bash to the summit
With Mark leading the way with another ten figure grid reference directing us through pine needles we miraculously popped out into a small heather and brambled clearing, which has the remains of four metal stations for the Fire Tower which is indicated on the map and which at one time stood on the summit of the hill.

I positioned the Trimble on top of one of the small remaining stantions, measured the offset from internal antenna to ground level as 0.43m and hoped that it would obtain its 0.1m accuracy.  Considering where it was positioned this accuracy was obtained quickly and I pressed ‘Log’ and joined Mark for a cup of mint and honey tea – yummy, yummy.

Gathering data at the summit of Llechwedd
The route out of the forest was direct toward the nearest open hillside and proved fun with Mark leading the way on a compass bearing and me following.  I started taking photos part of the way through the conifers and watched Mark being engulfed by trees, seemingly disappearing and being swallowed whole.

Pedwar bagging
Once out from the conifers we headed west toward where the 449m spot height appears on the map, thankfully this high point was clear of conifers and as the sun sank lower in the western sky the Trimble gathered another data set.

Gathering data at the 449m map heighted top
We then headed down to the car and drove a couple of miles north and parked close to the Llyn Brenig visitor car park.  By now daylight hours were receding and the rich winter colours had been replaced by a dimmed light.  We left the car, walked a short distance up the road and headed on a footpath toward a forest track which bisected the mature trees which make up the forestry around Craig Hir.

Llyn Brenig
Thankfully the gaps between the trees are large and enables easy walking upto the high point of the hill, as this was neared late afternoon light flickered through the canopy highlighting the mossed remains of felled tree stumps.

Approaching the summit of Craig Hir
As the Trimble was placed on what we deemed to be the high point we settled in for a long wait, I hoped it would attain its required accuracy but its starting accuracy of 4.8m was not a good sign.  I checked this height on numerous occasions and its best was only 21cm.  However, this height had bounced back up on subsequent checks and after patiently waiting for 15 minutes I closed it down, packed it away and down we went to Mark’s car as another shower just skimmed us to the north.

Hoping that the roast potatoes had not turned to charcoal I headed toward Christmas in Nantlle and stopped off to visit Dewi and Linda in Porthmadog on the way.  Good to catch up with Dewi who I hadn’t seen for quite some time.  Next stop Nantlle, I just hoped that Santa had brought me a large bag of pick and mix!

Survey Result:

Mynydd Poeth

Summit Height:  419.3m (converted to OSGM15) (significant height revision)

Summit Grid Reference:  SH 95375 51301 (summit relocation confirmed)

Bwlch Height:  387.6m (converted to OSGM15)

Bwlch Grid Reference:  SH 95707 50953

Drop:  31.7m (400m Sub-Pedwar reclassified to Pedwar) 

Dominance:  7.57%


Summit Height:  450.2m (converted to OSGM15)

Summit Grid Reference:  SH 96984 50697

Bwlch Height:  386.9m (converted to OSGM15)

Bwlch Grid Reference:  SH 95069 51315

Drop:  63.4m 

Dominance:  14.07% 

For further details please consult the Trimble survey spreadsheet click {here}