Waun Fach

Coordinates: 51°57′47″N 3°08′38″W / 51.96292°N 3.14392°W / 51.96292; -3.14392
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Waun Fach
Waun Fach from Mynydd Llysiau
Highest point
Elevation811 m (2,661 ft)
Prominence622 m (2,041 ft)
Parent peakPen y Fan
ListingMarilyn, Hewitt, Nuttall
English translationsmall moor
Language of nameWelsh
PronunciationWelsh: [wai̯n ˈvaːχ]
LocationBlack Mountains, South Wales
OS gridSO215300
Topo mapOS Landranger 161
Listed summits of Waun Fach
Name Grid ref Height Status
Pen y Gadair Fawr SN969193 800 metres (2,625 ft) Hewitt, Nuttall
Pen Allt-mawr SN969193 720 metres (2,362 ft) Hewitt, Nuttall
Rhos Dirion SN969193 713 metres (2,339 ft) sub Hewitt, Nuttall
Pen Cerrig-calch SN969193 701 metres (2,300 ft) Hewitt, Nuttall
Twmpa SN969193 690 metres (2,264 ft) Hewitt, Nuttall
Chwarel y Fan SN969193 679 metres (2,228 ft) Hewitt, Nuttall
Mynydd Llysiau SN969193 663 metres (2,175 ft) Hewitt, Nuttall

Waun Fach is, with a summit height of 811 metres (2,661 ft), the highest mountain in the Black Mountains in south-eastern Wales. It is one of the three Marilyns over 600 m that make up the range, the others being Black Mountain and Mynydd Troed. To the north Rhos Fawr and the Radnor Forest can be seen. It is the third highest mountain in Britain south of Snowdonia (after Pen y Fan and its near neighbour Corn Du). It is situated at the head of the Grwyne Fechan valley, above and to the west of the Grwyne Fawr reservoir.[1] It has an undistinguished (and almost indistinguishable[2]) rounded summit.[3] The nearby tops on the ridge, Pen Trumau and Pen y Gadair Fawr,[4] although lower, are very much more recognisable.[5]


The summit and upper slopes of Waun Fach are formed from the Early Devonian Epoch sandstones of the Brownstones Formation, a division of the Old Red Sandstone. Beneath these and forming the lower slopes are the sandstones of the Senni Formation (traditionally the Senni Beds). Mudstone layers within these sandstones are more readily eroded and have given rise to the stepped appearance of parts of the mountain. No rocks are exposed around its summit as this is covered by a thick layer of peat which has accumulated in the postglacial period, though is much reduced through erosion in recent decades.[6]


The hill is wholly within land mapped under the Countryside and Rights of Way Act 2000 as open country and hence is legally available to walkers despite there being no public rights of way leading to it. Mountain bikers and horseriders can follow the bridleways which lead to the 617m high col south of Pen Trumau but have no legal access to the hill itself. The paths approaching from the north and west have been repaired and improved by the Brecon Beacons National Park Authority, most recently through the Black Mountains Land Use Partnership in recent years, having previously become particularly damaged by use.[7]


  1. ^ "Geograph:: Grwyne Fawr Reservoir dam © Martin Wilson". www.geograph.org.uk.
  2. ^ "Geograph:: Summit of Waun Fach © Nigel Davies cc-by-sa/2.0". www.geograph.org.uk.
  3. ^ "Geograph:: Path from Pen y Gadair Fawr to Waun Fach © Nigel Davies". www.geograph.org.uk.
  4. ^ "Geograph:: Twyn Talycefn Cairn © David Neale cc-by-sa/2.0". www.geograph.org.uk.
  5. ^ Nuttall, John & Anne (1999). The Mountains of England & Wales - Volume 1: Wales (2nd edition ed.). Milnthorpe, Cumbria: Cicerone. ISBN 1-85284-304-7.
  6. ^ "England and Wales sheet 214 'Talgarth'". Maps portal. British Geological Survey. Retrieved 17 May 2020.
  7. ^ "Autumn airlifts". Black Mountains Land use Partnership. BMLUP. Retrieved 17 May 2020.

External links[edit]

51°57′47″N 3°08′38″W / 51.96292°N 3.14392°W / 51.96292; -3.14392