The Modern Antiquarian. Stone Circles, Ancient Sites, Neolithic Monuments, Ancient Monuments, Prehistoric Sites, Megalithic MysteriesThe Modern Antiquarian

Wern Frank Wood



The first site visited on a lengthy Black Mountains excursion (15.4.2010). A convoluted trip to get here (train to Newport, train to Hereford, bus from Hereford to Talgarth) bore witness to the Black Mountains at their most forbidding (i.e. completely invisible through very low, dense cloud cover). Luckily, as I got to Talgarth mid-morning the cloud started to lift, revealing the northern edge of the escarpment and saving me from a "should I/shouldn't I" decision about the sense or otherwise of this trip.

Walking east from Talgarth along quiet lanes, the gradient steepens and height was gained quickly as the sun emerged properly. By the open common of Rhos Fach I was over the 300m mark, but the hills ahead still looked pretty intimidating. A byway runs ESE from Rhos Fach, joining a huge area of access land at the southern tip of Wern Frank Wood. From here, the barrow is a short climb, just off the path to the left. It is covered in gorse bushes and quite difficult to see properly, but there are some visible stones protruding through the turf (Coflein mentions a cist). Unusually for Bronze Age barrows in this area, it is situated at the foot of the escarpment (albeit its low ridge 420m above sea level is still pretty high up), where it has a view over the Ennig valley to the west. The view to the east is completely filled by the squared off bulk of Y Das, and Mynydd Troed and Twmpa are visible landmarks to the SSW and NE respectively.

From here a steep climb beckons up to the highest Black Mountains ridge, with Waun Fach and Pen y Gadair Fawr (and Maen Llwyd) the day's main objectives. Another spectacular landscape to wander around in.
thesweetcheat Posted by thesweetcheat
29th April 2010ce
Edited 29th April 2010ce

Comments (4)

That is quite a daunting journey even by your standards tsc. It seems though that the more difficult it is to reach a site, the greater the saisfaction. If I had a hat I would take it off to you. tjj Posted by tjj
30th April 2010ce
Well, the bus trip was followed by a 14 mile walk over two mountain summits, then another bus trip to Cardiff (via Brecon) and a train back to Cheltenham! But that's the only way to get to these wonderful places by public transport... thesweetcheat Posted by thesweetcheat
30th April 2010ce
You know the Mam Cymru and I walked right by this and didn't even realise.... eyes to the skyline. Top man! I must learn to read a map...... GLADMAN Posted by GLADMAN
30th April 2010ce
Eyes to the skyline is understandable round there....

May get to Carreg Waun Llech tommorow, weather permitting.
thesweetcheat Posted by thesweetcheat
30th April 2010ce
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