White on Black   16 comments

Last week, winter arrived in the UK. Temperatures fell and so did the snow. Time to get up early and head out for some winter walking. Me and TJS were off into the Black Mountains for a walk over its highest summits in the hope there would be some snow. There was!


The drive up the long valley of Gwryne Fawr was very snowy, pleased I took the 4WD and not the small car! The car park was covered and there was deep powdery snow everywhere. Splendid


We decided to head up the valley first and return over the tops as I prefer a steep descent rather than the other way around


There was a watery blue sky and some weak sunshine and it felt great be walking on snow. Despite the first snowy weekend there was hardly anyone about



The valley has a reservoir and dam and it’s always further up here than I remember



We found a lower path right along the shore that was rather nice and we hoped would take us all the way to the bothy for a look-see (I’ve never been in)




The path became narrower and much closer to the lake. With all the snow there was a distinct possibility of a slip becoming a rather wet and cold one!


Eventually the path vanished altogether and we gave up on the bothy and headed back up to the track


As we reached the northern escarpment of the Black Mountains the wind picked up and we matched with an increased pace. There were a few stretches of path improvements, likely due to the serious damage trail bikes have been doing up here. Even with a covering of snow you could see their tracks. Hopefully the damage can be repaired but it will cost a fortune.


We reached Waun Fach – highest point in the Black Mountains – paused, and quickly moved on. The skies had turned grey and it’s a pretty bleak spot



We pushed on towards Pen y Gadair Fawr which despite being more prominent and always looking higher than Waun Fach is actually 30 feet lower. We found a sheltered spot for lunch among the snow-filled groughs


We’d made very quick time, we were earlier than expected and it was only a short steep drop back down to the car. We’d had our fill though, experienced some winter walking in the snow so were happy. Time to head home for a hot drink and a hearty meal


Waun Fach

10 miles and 1,900 feet of ascent (courtesy of a high start) in just over four hours including stops. Impressive (for me!)


16 responses to “White on Black

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  1. Wonderful snowy landscapes! Wish our mountains would get some more of that white stuff.


  2. Always puts a zing and a bit of fun into landscapes under snow. Really bitter wind here though at the moment and dangerous icy pavements tonight covered in frozen rain..Loads of people falling over.


    Blue Sky Scotland
    • I love walking in snow and winter conditions, puts a slippery spring in my step. Shame the sun didn’t stay out for longer but I was happy just get out and leave some footprints


  3. Looks very pretty. It’s fun to walk in virgin snowy landscapes. Soon Begins to pale, though, when it snows in town.


  4. Awesome photos, it is exhilarating to be out in such conditions. One can always dress for the cold, mind going out in winter mode does mean going well prepared. Wonderful to see you both having fun.


    Brenda-Dawn Linney
    • I’d always take a cold wintry day over a warm sunny one. Something about the crisp clear air and the crunch or feel of snow underfoot that just can’t be beat (says the person sitting in the Canary Islands!)


  5. Definitely atmospherically, bleak, snowy stuff that!


  6. Fantastic to follow in your footsteps.


  7. Blimey, looks like you had the hills all to yourself. Slightly disappointed that this Black Mountain circuit didn’t include any comedy hill names.


    • It shows just how under-rated and quiet the Black Mountains are. I guarantee that Pen-y-Fan on the Beacons would have been swarming with people that day. I did think I’d see more people out though on a snowy day. Apologies for the lack of smutty hill names, maybe next time

      Liked by 1 person

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