The Berwyns

East of Snowdonia, indeed barely ten miles from the English border, rises this range of lofty rounded hills high above the valley of the Dee. I’ve only had a single day on them so far, on the two small Hewitts to the north, but I’m looking forward to a circuit of the main group sometime, which rises to my highest unclimbed Welsh Hewitt of Cadair Berwyn (2723ft) – they should be ‘just my type’.

The northern Berwyns

These two hills, Moel Fferna (2067ft) and Moel yr Henfaes (2037ft), lie a couple of miles north of the main group. There are no difficulties in the ascent, with not a crag in sight, unless you count a few bits of boggy ground – no doubt this could be much worse after prolonged rain. I climbed them with an LDWA group on 19 April 2015, the day after we’d covered Plynlymon and its neighbouring heights. We started from the village of Cynwyd, rising through forestry until reaching the open hillside and following an easy track to a fence, then turning left to the summit of Moel Fferna. Later the fence was a secure guide on the lonely miles south to Moel yr Henfaes. For a long time this hill was known by the indignity of ‘Nameless’ but it’s since acquired two, the afore-mentioned and also Pen Bwlch Llandrillo Top, this admittedly being unflattering – it just means ‘the top of the top above the top of the lane to Llandrillo’. In the other direction, that lane gives an easy descent to Cynwyd, which we took.


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