In solitude, high above the Wye Valley
SURROUNDED BY AN area of common land, the pool is a Brecknock Wildlife Trust nature reserve and always worth a visit. When water levels are high, the edge of the pool reaches almost to the road, but even when low is still no great distance from the careful observer. Brechfa Pool is noted for its rich flora, which includes Pillwort, a Red Data Book species, mid-wales being its European stronghold. Other noteworthy plants include Orange Foxtail Grass and Pennyroyal, while rafts of white flowering Water Crowfoot enhance the shallows. It’s amazing to think that Black-headed Gulls did not nest in Breconshire until the beginning of the 20th Century, though have now been known at Brechfa for many years, with up to 100 pairs on occasions. Mute Swan and Coot nest – as do Lapwings – on the surrounding pastures. Away to the west, Llandyfalle Hill should not be missed, especially in spring when Golden Plover flocks are on passage and the first Wheatears arrive. The great challenge, though, is to locate a small party, a trip of Dotterel, which are quite a feature in upland Wales during their northward migration. Patience and a little good fortune in this area can be well rewarded.
TOP TIP An afternoon visit with the light comfortably behind is the best choice