Y Pellennig - The Remotest Hills of Wales



Carnedd Llywelyn and Yr Elen (Sub-Region A1) two Pellennig hills in the Carneddau

A ‘Pellennig’ is a remote hill in Wales, defined as having a minimum of 2.5km from its summit to the nearest paved public road and a minimum prominence of 15m.  It is fitting to name the list ‘Y Pellennig’, as the Welsh word pellennig translates as ‘remote’ or ‘distant’.  The listing has been compiled by Myrddyn Phillips and Aled Williams and there are 168 hills that qualify for ‘The Complete List’ with 124 of these being listed in ‘The Mainland List’, which excludes the more inaccessible island summits. 

The listing can be viewed as a totally new concept, as no other British Isles hill list based on remoteness has been previously published.  The criteria adopted for this list was chosen for an overall total that would set a challenge for completion and to include hills of interest and merit.  These criteria are not comparable to the mountains of the Scottish Highlands, but works extremely well for the topographical scale that defines the Scottish Southern Uplands, England, Ireland and Wales. 
As mentioned above, in order to present a realistic challenge for completion ‘The Mainland List’ was devised, which excludes 44 hills found on remote Welsh islands; many of which have landing restrictions due to seabird nesting colonies or present technical difficulty in their ascent.  Therefore, ‘The Mainland List’ was created specifically for those walkers/baggers that are unlikely to attempt ‘The Complete List’.  Climbing all ‘Pellennig’ hills is a considerable task and, in a time when the St Kilda sea stacks have been climbed for Marilyn completions, similarly, ‘The Complete List’ should not be thought of as unachievable.
The list has been compiled from the most recently available on-line mapping with over 19% of the qualifying hills having been surveyed by GNSS/GPS survey-grade receivers.  Each and every hill name has been painstakingly researched, with the bulk of this work being conducted by Aled Williams using current and historical documents including Ordnance Survey, estate survey, tithe and nautical maps and charts.  Aled has combined these cartographic name sources with his local research in the Welsh uplands, scrutinising each hill name for correct composition and most appropriate name choice.
The final product is a unique hill list that will take the user to some of the most beautiful and lonely land in Wales.


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