Wednesday, 7 June 2017

Mapping Mountains – Trimble Surveys – Y Berwyn

04.05.17  Foel Fawr (SJ 130 146)

Foel Fawr (SJ 130 146)

Having visited Bwlan (SH 946 255) and the beautiful Pistyll Rhyd-y-meinciau I wanted to visit one small hill on my way home, and Foel Fawr proved a perfect choice.  The hill is unnamed on Ordnance Survey maps but the Tithe map to the parish of Meifod names the bounded land where the summit of the hill is situated as Foel Fawr.  The hill is positioned to the north-west of the village of Meifod and sits quietly amongst a patchwork of country lanes.

I approached from the east having parked my car at the entrance to the track leading down to the old farm house of Rhosfawr Uchaf, walking down this track was similar to a scene from parts of France as luxuriating warmth came out of a succulent blue sky with an avenue of trees leading down toward the house.  The track is a public footpath and as the critical bwlch of the hill is placed on or beside it, I spent a few minutes assessing the lay of land at the bwlch before continuing toward the summit of the hill.

All was quiet as I followed the track through the old farm yard and continued on the green track to the south of the house, following it through canopied trees and out to an adjacent field, it was only a short distance from here and over another field to the high point of the hill.

Once at the summit I assessed the lay of land for its high point and placed the Trimble on the ground to gather its customary five minutes of data, as it beeped away collecting its datum points I stood back and admired the view, which was expansive; away to the south-east the distinctive profile of Corndon stood out beyond a multitude of varied coloured trees, and to the north the double topped Gallt y Goedhwch shone green with patches of yellowed gorse adding variety to its grazed slopes. 

Distant view of Corndon

Gathering data at the summit of Foel Fawr

The greens and yellows of Gallt y Goedhwch

For such an unassuming and relatively small hill Foel Fawr gave expansive views, and although I could so easily have stayed on its summit lingering in the late afternoon warmth and beauty I had an appointment with a ballot box in Welshpool for the local County Council election and so once five minutes of data were gathered I closed the Trimble down, packed it away and retraced my way back down the fields and through the wood to where the connecting bwlch of the hill is placed.

Route back through the wood to the bwlch

Once at the bwlch I judged its critical point to be beside the track, I set the Trimble up on top of my rucksack to give it elevation above its immediate surrounds and waited for the 0.1m accuracy level to be attained before data should be logged, this proved a long wait as the Trimble was shielded by a number of trees, however I was in no desperate rush and spent my time enjoying the dappled early evening light as the sun slowly lowered casting long shadows.  It took about 25 minutes before the magic 0.1m accuracy level appeared and I then pressed ‘Log’ and scampered off to wait until five minutes of data were gathered.

Gathering data at the critical bwlch of Foel Fawr

Early evening light

The long wait at the bwlch enabled me to concentrate on finer detail

Gathering pollen

The Trimble GeoXH 6000 set-up position at the bwlch of Foel Fawr

As I packed the Trimble away I had one last look back at Rhosfawr-uchaf, a now renovated old farm house nestling in quiet countryside amongst good hills, and followed the track back up to my awaiting car. 

Survey Result:

Foel Fawr (significant name revision)

Summit Height:  309.5m (converted to OSGM15)

Summit Grid Reference:  SJ 13095 14685

Bwlch Height:  255.1m (converted to OSGM15)

Bwlch Grid Reference:  SJ 13387 14854

Drop:  54.4m

Dominance:  17.59%  

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