Pen Pumlumon Fawr
The northern slopes of Pumlumon Fawr
Highest point
Elevation 752 m (2,467 ft)
Prominence 526 m (1,726 ft)
Parent peak Pen y Fan
Listing Marilyn, Hewitt, Council top, Nuttall
Coordinates 52°28′03″N 3°46′58″W / 52.4675°N 3.7828°W / 52.4675; -3.7828Coordinates: 52°28′03″N 3°46′58″W / 52.4675°N 3.7828°W / 52.4675; -3.7828
Translation five-peaked mountain, big peak (Welsh)
Pronunciation Welsh: [ˈpɛn pɪmˈlɪmɔn ˈvauɾ]
Location Ceredigion, Wales
Parent range Cambrian Mountains
OS grid SN789869
Topo map OS Landranger 135
Listed summits of Plynlimon
NameGrid refHeightStatus
Pen Pumlumon ArwystliSN815877741 mHewitt, Nuttall
Pen Pumlumon Llygad-bychanSN815877727 mHewitt, Nuttall
Y GarnSN775851684 mHewitt, Nuttall
Pumlumon FachSN787874664 mNuttall
Pumlumon CwmbigaSN830899620 mDeleted Nuttall
CarnfachbugeilynSN826903622 mUnclassified

Plynlimon (anglicised from Pumlumon in Welsh, meaning "five peaks") is the highest point of the Cambrian Mountains in Wales, and the highest point in Mid Wales. It is a massif that dominates the countryside of northern Ceredigion.

The highest point of the massif itself is Pen Pumlumon Fawr at 752 metres (2,467 ft). Its other important peaks are Pen Pumlumon Arwystli, Y Garn, Pen Pumlumon Llygad-bychan and Pumlumon Fach.

The longest river in Britain, the River Severn, has its source on the mountain, as do the rivers Wye and Rheidol.

Folklore says there is a sleeping giant in Pumlumon.


The Pumlumon area is the largest watershed in Wales and is the source of the rivers Wye, Severn and Rheidol. Since 2007 the Wildlife Trusts of Wales have been working to improve the habitat as a "living landscape" project. This watershed area has been affected by loss of biodiversity, erosion of the peaty soils' structure, and accelerated drainage.[1] Some believe the drainage issues have contributed significantly to flooding in areas some distance downstream, though this cannot be clearly proved.

Like most of the uplands across Wales, intensive land use activities have resulted in many habitats being either lost or degraded. Over-grazing of sheep has induced soil compaction, which has resulted in increased flooding of the lowland areas. The principal land cover within the project area is dominated by a complex mosaic of locally, nationally and internationally important habitats and species, such as dry and wet dwarf-shrub heathland, blanket bog, unimproved acid grassland and a number of oligotrophic lakes. Agriculturally improved grassland, broadleaved woodlands and forestry plantation are also characteristic features of the area.

The Pumlumon area is also important for breeding, wintering and feeding bird fauna particularly hen harrier, merlin, short-eared owl and red and black grouse, and a number of Red Data Book and UK BAP invertebrates.[2] The red kite also frequents the area. Golden Plovers have declinded by 92% since 1992. [3]

Severn Way

The Severn Way runs for 210 miles (337 km) along the River Severn between the mouth of the Severn at Bristol, England, and its source at Pumlumon, Wales.


  1. The Pumlumon Project, Montgomeryshire Wildlife Trust
  2. Nuttall, John & Anne (1999). The Mountains of England & Wales - Volume 1: Wales (2nd edition ed.). Milnthorpe, Cumbria: Cicerone. ISBN 1-85284-304-7.
  3. Birdguides
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