Procopius, a sixth century Byzantine writer who had some dealings with English emissaries, took an interest in the distant island of Britannia; and he was somewhat daunted. In the west of the island, beyond the wall of Severus, lies a land of serpents, vipers and wild beasts, where the souls of men are brought, he declares. He had certainly his Geography wrong, as he confused the area with Scotland and he wrongly located Hadrian's wall, but the place where the Celts thought that men's souls were brought was the Berwyn Moorlands, on the borders of Wales, where the ancient Britons believed that the gateway to Annwn, [pronounced Annuvin] the realm of the dead, lay. On these sparse moorlands, the Cwn Annwn, the hounds of Annuvin. hunted,seeking souls of the dead roaming in the mist to hound into the underworld.
Look at the image below and enjoy Pistyll Rhaeadr, one of the seven wonders of Wales. This is a beautiful waterfall that drains the moors on Moel Sych towering above it, but for the Celts it was the gateway to a mysterious land. Not for nothing were the moors known as Rhos y Beddau, the moors of graves. Annuvin lay somewhere up there, and the moorlands contained deadly traps, bogs into which you could sink chest deep. This was a land that featured in the myths of Arthur, a Welsh warlord who was at home in that region, to the extent that one of the places on the Berwyn Ridge is known as Arthur's Table [Bwrd Arthur.]
The Welsh were so convinced that this was a magical place that the legend that travellers across the moor could be met by Gwynn ap Nudd, a Celtic underworld deity believed especially at large at Samhain [modern Hallowe'en.] developed. He would offer them food, but if they took it they were swallowed up into his underworld, never to escape. There is a legend that Gwynn once on the Berwyn Moors tried to capture St Coll, but Celtic saints were used to this kind of thing, so he resolutely refused, and then saw Gwynn's palace fade away, leaving him alone on the moor. He became the patron saint of nearby Llangollen.
Don't be unnecessarily alarmed. There is good walking on the main paths, especially along the ridge. I have only once put my foot into a bog hole, and as normally is the case I was wearing light coloured trousers at the time. I never go into mud except when I am wearing light clothes. Some mischievous sprite is behind this, I suspect. ,
About a foot across.
The last paragraph to your first subheading, A Land where Myths are at Home, comments about light-colored clothes perhaps foretelling bog hole-walking.
Online sources only have big bog holes that look about the size of the vernal pool along the back yard. A hole that size I easily see during a day with sun and without driving precipitation.
What size was the hole that your eyes missed -- ;-D -- but your feet didn't?
There is a suggestion that the name Rhaeadr is derived from the classical goddess Rhea, the mother of the gods. The Roman world was known for blending deities from different branches of paganism, so it is possible that in pre-Roman times the waterfall was named in honour of the Great Goddess, known under a variety of names, and she was later identified by some with Rhea during the Roman period.
Speaking of the goddess, Dea, the picture above shows the Berwyns viewed from the Dee Valley, the river being sacred to her in ancient times.
There is very little permanent snow in Britain, there being one small snowfield in a Scottish mountain corrie, and I am unsure how that will fare in global warming. We can get snow, and certain areas are snowier than others. Scotland gets it worst, and the mountain regions of Wales and Northern England can also suffer really heavy snow. Atlantic snow storms can hit Cornwall in the South West, and they have been quite thick.
A corrie is a small, bowl shaped valley at the head of what was once a glacier. By the way, my profile picture was not taken in Britain. It was in Norway.
I thought Britain was full of snow - how wrong I was. It looks like a very beautiful country, the Berwyns is just like you described - a land of myths, faeries and beauty. I would love to visit UK some day. It is in my wish list.
There is the Tees-Exe line, which is an imaginary line drawn from North-East England to South West England, the Tees and the Exe being rivers. North West of this line Britain is mainly higher ground [though I live in a lowland bit.] South East of it is mainly low. The line is said to draw a division between mainly Celtic Britain [including parts of England] and Saxon Britain. As you move North and West Britain tends to be more rugged and the scenery can become wilder and grander. This is a rough division and it is somewhat simplistic, but there is truth in it. All Scotland, Wales and Cornwall, Celtic lands, are North and West of the line.
The population pressures are hitting the South-East, but there are other parts of the country which may be suffering from population decrease,often through ageing, as young people move for jobs.
I continue to be amazed at how wild some of the countryside is in the British Isles. Maybe someday I'll get to see it.