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Pen y Crug, Brecon

Pen y Crug, or “the crug” as its known locally, is an ironage hillfort right outside Brecon.  Its only a small hill, but photographically it punches well above its weight, with the summit offering an incredible 360-degree view over some of the most stunning landscape in the Brecon Beacons.  It is also the spot where I was fortunately enough to take the image Brecon in Winter (featured right) which won the 2022 UK Landscape Photographer of the Year competition, so there's definitely a bit of personal bias towards this spot.  However, it is without doubt a fantastic spot for photography!


Because of the range of views, Pen y Crug is a location that works well at both sunrise and sunset, and across all seasons, although winter is my personal favourite as the snow on the peaks adds a touch of magic.  While the small summit plateau offers the most obvious viewpoints, make sure to also explore the surrounding slopes where you’ll find gates, trees and often a few wild horses to add to your foregrounds. 

A telephoto lens can be very useful in opening up more varied compositions across the surrounding mountains, while also helping add a bit of compression to the scenes.  Several of the photos here were taken at around 200mm.  

Reaching the hillfort is pretty straightforward with paths leading up from a selection of parking spots, both along the B4520 and from the smaller lane leading to Cradoc Golf Club (click here for a Google maps link to my preferred parking spot).  Being a small hill, the hike up can be done in about 20 minutes, making this a great sunrise mountain location if you want to avoid setting off in the dark. 


Despite the stunning location, you won't be battling for space at the top - I've been up there several times and have yet to meet another photographer. 


Definitely an underrated photography spot in my opinion so get out there and give it a go!

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