Shaped millions of years ago by movement of the earth's surface and the ravages of time and glaciers, the mountain tops that we know today are far from being a natural wilderness. Thousands of years ago man cut down the cover of trees and began to leave hismark. Ancient trackways, sheepfolds and other field enclosures, sites of worship, and mining and quarrying for minerals, stone and slate are all apparent today, even high up in the mountains. With man came the need for food, and the management of the land for domestic animals, in particular the sheep, has given us the present cover of grasses, heather and bracken.
Traditional sheep-farming practices sustained a rich diversity of plant life now sadly being lost due to changing farming patterns.
Thousands of tramping feet now have the potential to damage the very mountains that people come to enjoy.