Clyde Holmes painting of Pedwar peak Graig Goch near Bala
I notice that mid Wales's answer to Nicholas 'Map-Man' Crane is back in the news.Myrddyn Phillips of Welshpool who first came to my attention through his real life 'Englishman who went up a hill and who came down a mountain' role in reappointing a Nantlle hill,Graig Goch, a mountain- and more recently Tal y Fan and Thack Moor in Cumbria-has offered the hillwalking community a new category of hills to bag. 'the Pedwars'. A range of hills above 400 and between 499m (1312'-1637').
In the UK,it's the generally accepted consensus that a mountain is an independent high point above 2000' or 610 metres. So those hovering around the 608/609 point are of supreme interest to Myrddyn and his associates who have taken it upon themselves to reinvestigate these borderline peaks. The aforementioned Nantlle, Tal y Fan and Thack Moor measurements have been accepted by the Ordnance Survey who will amend future maps with the new heights.
As for 'the Pedwars'- which are roughly half the size of a Scottish Munro- sounds like a ameinable little project for jaded hillwalkers. Collecting the full 477 compliment of wee Welsh peaks which are generally off the radar of rufty tufty peak baggers. By chance I have investigated a few local Pedwars myself in recent months which I've blogged about and I can confirm that many of these minnows have a unique charm and isolated quality,despite their lack of scale.
However, I'm a bit confused as to just how many mountain classifications there are. According to the Go4aWalk website, it offers the following information in answer to a similar query...
A Mountain in England, Wales & Ireland is defined as being a high point over 610m (2000ft) above mean sea-level with 30m (approx 100ft) of 'prominence' or 'ascent' on all sides.English and Welsh mountains are also sometimes known by the acronym Hewitt which stands for Hill in England, Wales or Ireland over Two Thousand feet. There are currently 527 Hewitts in the British Isles - 178 in England, 138 in Wales and 211 in Ireland.
In Scotland it is more complicated. A Mountain in Scotland is defined as being a high point over 915m (3000ft) above mean sea-level with 30m (approx 100ft) of 'prominence' or 'ascent' on all sides (known as Murdos) or a high point over 610m (2000ft) but under 914.9m (2999ft) above mean sea-level with 150m (approx 500ft) of 'prominence' or 'ascent' on all sides. These lower mountains are called Corbetts (between 2500ft and 2999ft high) and Grahams (between 2000ft and 2499ft high).
Munros are Scottish Mountains over 915m (3000ft) high that have been 'elected' to Munro status by the SMC (Scottish Mountaineering Club).
There are currently 443 Murdos, 221 Corbetts, 224 Grahams and 283 Munros.
What about The Marylins, Deweys, Nuttalls,Wainwrights and Birketts??? How about a classification for all the high points over 50m in Essex? We could call them 'The Jades' or 'The Chelseas' ?... 'I've completed the Munros now I'm off to nail some Essex Jades'..which sounds just wrong on so many levels!
PS: The title will mean little to anyone not familiar with cult Scouse band 'Half Man-Half Biscuit'!
Unnamed Pedwar near Cerrigydrudion