Some Mountains, Hills and Summits of Great Britain

These pages feature some of the many mountains, hills, fells, summits and high points in Britain. The criteria for inclusion are that (1) I've climbed the hill in question, and (2) that I've taken a photo at the summit. Wherever possible there is also a picture of the hill from a neighbouring summit or adjacent valley, or a picture of the view from the top.

See the home page for an explanation of the status terms (Munro, Corbett, Marylin, Hewitt, et al).

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Mynydd Dinas

Location: Port Talbot
Grid Ref: SS 760915
Height: 846 ft (258 m)
Status: Marilyn

Notes: Mynydd Dinas is a heathland dome overlooking the Welsh coastal town of Port Talbot. It can be climbed from the town in about 50 minutes. The best part of the panorama is the northwestward arc, where the coast sweeps around to Swansea, and Neath is also visible. Somerset and Exmoor are visible across the Bristol channel.

Mynydd Machen

Location: Ebbw Vale
Grid Ref: ST 223900
Height: 1188 ft (362 m)
Status: Marilyn, Clement

Notes: Mynydd Machen stands to the southwest of Risca, a few miles north of Newport. The hill carries a prominent TV relay mast on its summit and can be seen from most of the coastal plain between Cardiff and Newport. Both towns figure prominently in the summit view, which also extends across the Bristol channel to Somerset. The easiest access from the road network is at Gelli-ffiniog farm at ST216907, from where a track goes right to the top.

Mynydd Twyn-glas

Location: Lwyd Vale
Grid Ref: ST 259978
Height: 1549 ft (472 m)
Status: Marilyn, Clement

Notes: Mynydd Twyn-glas (Mynydd Maen on some maps) is an extensive area of high ground situated between Cwmbran to the east and Newbridge to the west. It can be ascended from either, though the approach from Cwmbran is quicker.  Drivers can park at ST277979 and take the track to the top; non drivers can get a bus as far as Upper Cwmbram at ST274969. The ascent is gentle. The summit is a typical heathland plateau, though any sense of wilderness is dashed by the line of pylons and two clusters of radio masts. Newport, the Bristol Channel and Somerset are seen to the south, the Abergavenny hills to the northeast and the higher tops of the Brecon Beacons to the northwest.

Mynydd y Glyn
Mynydd y Glyn

Location: Rhondda Valley
Grid Ref: ST 031896
Height: 1237 ft (377 m)
Status: Marilyn, Clement

Notes: Mynydd y Glyn lays to the south of Porth in the Rhondda valley, from where it's best climbed. The map suggests that access is difficult but in fact Mynydd y Glyn is one of the easiest marilyns in the Valleys. The unkarked top can be reached from Porth by taking a path from the highest suburbs southeastwards below the old quarry workings as far as an artificial watercourse, then alongside it for a couple of hundred meters before turning right for the gate that gives access to open country. Unsurprisingly the panorama encompasses the Brecon Beacons to the north and the Bristol Channel, with Exmoor and the Quantocks beyond, to the south. The trig pillar to the southeast is not the summit!

Mynydd y Lan

Location: Ebbw Vale
Grid Ref: ST 208923
Height: 1250 ft (381 m)
Status: Marilyn, Clement

Notes: Mynydd y Lan lays to the west of Crosskeys in lower Ebbw Vale, not many miles northwest of Newport, a near neighbour of Mynydd Machen (q.v.). It features steep slopes on most sides though the summit itself is pretty flat and featureless, marked only by a boundary stone. The best access is at ST218917 though the map is not terribly accurate in its depiction of the path network; the route I found was initially along the Two Rivers walk then along an unmarked track up left through the forest to the foot of Cox's Quarry, from where a sketchy path ran up the left side of the quarry rim to reach a track hugging the side of the forest for the rest of the way up. Cardiff and Newport both feature in the view to the south, while the rest of the panorama encompasses many of the heights between the Glamorgan valleys.

Nine Barrow Down

Location: Purbeck Downs, Dorset
Grid Ref: SZ 007811
Height: 653 ft (199 m)
Status: Marilyn

Notes: One of a handful of Marilyns whose status was discovered after Dawson published his original list, Nine Barrow Down is the top of a downland ridge laying to the southwest of Poole Harbour. It stands above the coastal resort of Swanage, from where it's a comfortable walk of just under an hour. To make it a worthwhile expedition consider walking the whole three-mile ridge from Swanage to Corfe Castle, or vice-versa. The highest point is unmarked, the trig pillar having been removed, and lays about 100 metres north of the footpath at a field corner near a pair of masts. Poole and Bournemouth are seen to the north, the Ise of Wight to the east and the Purbeck Downs and Corfe Castle to the west.

Nine Standards Rigg

Location: Yorkshire Dales, Swaledale
Grid Ref: NY 8250611
Height: 2172 ft (662 m)
Status: Marilyn, Hewitt, Nuttall

Notes: A sprawling hill in the northern Pennines, Nine Standards Rigg lays on the route of the Coast to Coast Walk. On the edge of the Yorkshire Dales National Park and on the main watershed of England, it overlooks the town of Kirkby Stephen three miles to the west, and it's from here that the easiest ascent can be made.  The origin of the nine "stone men" or columnar cairns on the summit, is a mystery.

North Berwick Law

Location: East Lothian
Grid Ref: NT 556842
Height: 613 ft (187 m)
Status: Marilyn

Notes: Rising stark and alone from the coastal plains of East Lothian not far from Dunbar, North Berwick Law is an ancient vocanic plug. Its summit features a mix of grass and rock plus a good deal of "furniture", including a couple of old buildings and an arch. It is easily climbed from North Berwick in around 45 minutes via a path winding around its western side. The view from the top is most rewarding, encompassing the Firth of Forth, the Lammermuirs to the south, and the crouching lion shape of Arthur's Seat some thirty miles to the west.

Orrest Head

Location: Lake District, Far Eastern Fells
Grid Ref: SD 414994
Height: 781 ft (238 m)
Status: Wainwright outlying fell

Notes: Orrest Head is the spot at which, on a summer day in 1930, Alfred Wainwright first set eyes on the mountainscape of the Lake District and fell in love with it. That view can't have changed much since then, save that Windermere town has grown. Orrest Head, a modest fell by any standards, can be reached by first following the Kendal road out of town then taking a farm driveway and a woodland path up to the rocky little bald of the summit. All is pastoral through the southwestern arc, dominated by Windermere itself and the forests on its far shore, but it's the northwestern arc that commands attention for here the fells crowd into view. The Coniston fells, the Langdale Pikes, the Fairfield Horseshoe, Red Screes  and the western arm of the Kentmere horseshoe all feature strongly.

Pen y Fan

Location: Brecon Beacons
Grid Ref: SO 012215
Height: 2907 ft (886 m)
Status: Marilyn, Hewitt, Nuttall

Notes: The highest summit in the Brecon Beacons, indeed the highest summit in south Wales. Pen-y-Fan's characteristic flat top stands out for many miles around. It is best climbed from Storey Arms on the Brecon - Merthry road (there's a regular bus service for non-drivers), from where a straightforward and reasonably graded path will get you to the top in 75 minutes. The view is glorious and includes the hills of mid-Wales (Cadair Idris, Plynlymon, the Arans and Berwyns), the Marches (the Wrekin, the Shropshire Hills, the Clee Hills), the Black Mountains and the Forest of Dean, the Cotswolds, the Mendips and the Quantocks, the Bristol Channel and Exmoor, Lundy and Gower. On the clearest of days there are glimpses of Snowdonia, 90 miles away.


Location: Yorkshire Dales, Ribblesdale
Grid Ref: SD 838733
Height: 2278 ft (694 m)
Status: Marilyn, Hewitt, Nuttall

Notes: One of the "Three Peaks" of the Yorkshire Dales, Pen-y-Ghent is a great whaleback hill with a distinctive double cliff on its southern spur. The upper and lower cliffs are formed of gritstone and limestone respectively. The rocky summit of the hill is crossed by a drystone wall. Pen-y-Ghent is on the route of the Pennine Way and also lies on the main watershed of Britain. Views are extensive, though are perhaps at their best to the west and northwest, encompassing Ribblesdale, Ingleborough and Whernside. The hill is a straightforward climb from Horton in Ribblesdale, a distance of 3 miles with some 1500 ft of ascent. Don't miss Hull Pot and Hunt Pot, spectacular limestone potholes both just off route.

Periton Hill

Location: Exmoor
Grid Ref: SS 946442
Height: 973 ft (297 m)
Status: Marilyn

Notes: This summit is the highest point of a long ridge of heathland laying south of Minehead, on the Somerset coast. The trig point itself is fairly well hidden by trees and stands atop an old stone wall. Periton Hill is an easy walk from Minehead; the most straightforward approach is to walk through the town's residential streets to Hopcott, follow the woodland track up to the ridge, then walk to the west for just under a mile. Thanks to the surround of woodland there is little view, but from various spots in the vicinity you can see the bulk of Exmoor including Dunkery Beacon, Gallax Hill south of Dunster, eastwards to the Quantocks and north across Minehead and the Bristol Channel to Wales.

Pike O'Stickle

Location: Lake District, Central Fells
Grid Ref: NY 274073 
Height: 2326 ft (709 m)
Status: Wainwright, Hewitt, Nuttall

Notes: One of the Langdale Pikes, Pike O'Stickle's shapely topknott commands a fine view over Langdale itself, Windermere and the south east lakes, and across to Lonsdale. It's really just a top of High Raise but its profile and position make it a prized conquest for hillwalkers. The ascent of its summit tor is actually quite tricky and the fainthearted may well think twice. It can be included in a round of the Pikes, or can be climbed individually by way of Stake Pass, Easedale, Stickle Ghyll or Dungeon Ghyll.

Pinhaw Beacon

Location: Aire Gap, West Yorkshire
Grid Ref: SD 944473
Height: 1273 ft (388 m)
Status: Clement

Notes: Pinhaw Beacon is on the route of the Pennine Way and is the highest part of a sprawl of unimproved heather moorland between Colne and Skipton. Skipton itself is in view from the summit, which can be ascended very easily from the minor road crossing Elslack Moor, only ten minutes' walk away.


Location: Lake District, Eastern Fells
Grid Ref: NY 342174
Height: 2889 ft (883 m)
Status: Wainwright, Hewitt, Nuttall

Notes: The thirteenth highest summit in England, a height reached by virtue of Raise being one of Helvellyn's northern neighbours. Raise lays between the Glenridding mine track and Stick's Pass, each of which offer straightforward ascents (and from Raise it's little more than a stroll to Helvellyn itself). The rocky summit, a novelty on this otherwise grassy ridge, provides an interesting foreground to a grand summit vista.

Rampsgill Head

Location: Lake District, Eastern Fells
Grid Ref: NY 442128
Height: 2598 ft (792 m)
Status: Wainwright, Hewitt, Nuttall

Notes: Situated atop the dogleg in the High Street ridge just north of High Street itself, Rampsgill Head stands at the head of both Ramps Gill (to the northwest) and Riggindale Beck (to the southeast) and boasts a pretty good panorama. The outcrop of rocks pictured appears to be the highest point, though a similar outcrop a couple of hundred metres to the southwest is actually a superior viewpoint and does appear to be the true head of Ramps Gill. Standing as it does at the crossroads of the High Street ridge and Wainwright's Coast to Coast route, it boasts a choice of four ascent routes; that from Ullswater is probably the most popular.

Rannerdale Knotts

Location: Lake District, North Western Fells
Grid Ref: NY 167183
Height: 1165 ft (355 m)
Status: Wainwright, Clement

Notes: Just a 45 minute climb from Buttermere, this rocky little summit is a very rewarding climb for the minimum effort involved. An offshoot of Whiteless Pike in the Grasmoor group, Rannerdale Knotts has a commanding view over both Buttermere and Crummock Water, and in the other direction offers a superb view of  the wild slopes of Grasmoor and Whiteless Pike.

Red Beck Top

Location: Lake District, Southern Fells
Grid Ref: NY 242097
Height: 2365 ft (721 m)
Status: Hewitt, Nuttall

Notes: A nameless top on the high ridge between Allen Crags and Glaramara. Since it qualifies as both a Nuttall and a Hewitt, it has been named after the nearest watercourse for inclusion in the Nuttall list (though the Hewitt list gives it as Glaramara South Top), Typically rocky, like all the tops in this area. The summit has fine views of the Langdale Pikes and Coniston fells (as pictured) as well as Great End and the Gables.

Red Screes

Location: Lake District, Eastern Fells
Grid Ref: NY 396087
Height: 2546 ft (776 m)
Status: Wainwright, Marilyn, Hewitt, Nuttall

Notes: Red Screes lays to the east of the Fairfield horseshoe overlooking Kirkstone Pass. The ridge rises just north of the town of Ambleside and Red Screes can be ascended from the town in around two and a half hours. The mountain dominates the northern end of Windermere and the views from its summits are excellent, taking in just about all the major Lakeland fells apart from Skiddaw and Blencathra. It is unusual in having a substantial tarn adjacent to its summit.

Rhos Dirion

Location: Black Mountains
Grid Ref: SO 211334
Height: 2339 ft (713 m)
Status: Nuttall

Notes: The Black Mountains are a range of north-south heathland ridges just west of the England/Wales border, and their northern terminations form a series of splendid little summits. Rhos Dirion is one of these, laying to the west of its immediate neighbour Twmpa. Although higher than Twnpa it has lesser topological status as there is only 90 metres of reascent from its parent fell back along the ridge. It is equally well climbed from Gospel Pass in the east (via Twmpa) or from Talgarth in the west, though there is rather less ascent from Gospel Pass.  The view to the north is excellent, taking in much of rural Powys and Herefordshire, while the bulk of the Black Mountains lays to the south and the Brecon Beacons are well presented to the southwest.

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This page last updated 6th October 2010