Sugar Loaf and Skirrid

September 25, 2009 at 11:20 pm | Posted in Walking | Leave a comment
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These are two of the most accessible hills in the Black Mountains but they provide wonSkirrid Hill from Sugar Loafderful views. Skirrid, Ysgyryd Fawr or Holy Mountain as it also known, has for hundreds of years inspired a host of intriguing myths and tales.

I was with G, and we began with Sugar Loaf, walking up from a car park on the Abergavenny side. The paths are wide and easily followed (though we still managed to wade through bracken after missing the track while talking). The hill’s isolation provides excellent views, particularly over to Waun Fach and Pen y Gadair Fawr.

Sugar Loaf from SkirridThe weather was fine but cloudy and there was a chill in the wind on the summit of Sugar Loaf, but by the time we got to Skirrid (after a relaxing pint at The Bear in Crickhowell), the sun had broken through. Skirrid is a shorter and steeper climb but the views are as good if not better than from Sugar Loaf. As we climbed along the distinctive cloven ridge to the summit, the Black Mountains provided a wonderful backdrop beyond the summit. From the summit itself, we looked back as far as the Severn to the south east as well as over Sugar Loaf to the Brecon Beacons. A few stones are all that remain of the old chapel at the summit, but they add to the sense of this being a rather special hill.

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