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Snowdon by the Pyg and Miner's Tracks from Pen-y-pass

Snowdonia/Eryri Walk

Nat Park - Snowdonia - Snowdon Crib Goch

County/Area - Gwynedd

Author - Lou Johnson

Length - 7.5 miles / 12.2 km    Ascent - 2510 feet / 761 metres

Time - 6 hours 20 minutes    Grade - moderate

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Ordnance Survey Explorer OL17Sheet Map1:25kBUY
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Walk Route Description

Photo from the walk - Snowdon by the Pyg and Miner's Tracks
Click image to visit gallery of 2 images.

Snowdon is a great mountain and despite the summit crowds is well worth climbing. This route must rank as the easiest. Starting at Pen-y-pass means you have considerably reduced the total ascent and with well-maintained paths for most of the way the going is as easy as it gets in these type of surroundings.

The start for this Snowdonia (Eryri) walk is the car park at Pen-y-pass (grid ref. SH 647555). This car park fills early so the advice is to get there as soon as you can especially when the weather is fine. This route can be attempted in any direction but for the purposes of this description the outward leg uses the Pyg Track with a return along the Miner's Track.

From the car park take the path that exits at the northern end adjacent to the cafe. The first section is dramatic and sets the tone for the whole walk with a great view down to Llanberis. Ahead the east end of Crib Goch can be seen with the great eastern crags of Snowdon leading off to the north. The path climbs steadily to reach a col - Bwlch y Moch - where the path onto Crib Goch leaves to the right.

Staying on the Pyg Track the route continues to climb along the southern flank of Crib Goch with good views right to Llyn Llydaw and Y Lliwedd with Snowdon coming into view ahead. This is some of the grandest mountain scenery in North Wales and despite the steady climb you soon forget the hard work as you enjoy the views. Climbing higher smaller Glaslyn comes into view and it is worth noting where the Miner's Track comes up to meet the path you are on as this will prove useful on the descent.

The relatively easy walk becomes steeper after passing Glaslyn and you climb more rapidly to reach a zigzag which takes you up to a large stone marker at Bwlch Glasw. Again it is worth making a mental note of this for the return journey. You now follow the track of the Snowdon Mountain Railway for the final 300 feet of ascent to the summit.

To return retrace your steps to the stone marker at Bwlch Glasw and descend the zigzag above Glaslyn. You then have a steep descent down to the shores of the lake to join the Miner's Track for the return to Pen-y-pass. Although traversing the same mountainous country the Miner's Track has a different "feel" as the peaks seem higher especially on the section between Glaslyn and Llyn Llydaw. Reaching the shores of the Llyn Llydaw you pass the remains of the mine buildings where Victorian entrepreneurs exploited Snowdon for its copper. Reaching the causeway you can look back to enjoy one of the great views of Snowdon before relaxing on the last almost level stage back to the start.

Other walks nearby

Walk 2650 Tryfan, the Glyders & Y Garnvery hard8.0 miles
Walk 1088 Glyder Ridge traversehard5.5 miles
Walk 1186 Y Garnmod/hard4.5 miles
Walk 3019 Y Garn & Carnedd y Filiast Ogwen Cottagehard8.5 miles
Walk 3062 Pen yr Ole Wenmoderate5.0 miles
Walk 2417 Glyder Fach, Glyder Fawr and Tryfan from Idwal Cottagemod/hard6.5 miles
Walk 1137 Y Garn (Route 2) from Ogwen Cottagemod/hard4.5 miles
Walk 2680 Circuit of Llyn Idwal easy2.8 miles
Walk 1192 Yr Aranmod/hard6.5 miles
Walk 1103 Snowdon & Cwm Llan horseshoevery hard13.0 miles

Recommended Books & eBooks

Snowdonia: 30 Low-level and easy walks - South

Snowdonia: 30 Low-level and easy walks - SouthGuidebook describing 30 walks in Snowdonia, Wales. Routes are mostly low level and on clear paths and showcase the region's beautiful scenery and rich history and culture. Part of a 2-volume set, this southern volume includes Trawsfynydd, Bala, Dolgellau, Machynlleth, the Harlech Coast and the valleys of the Mawddach and Dyfi.
More information

Snowdonia: 30 Low-level and easy walks - North

Snowdonia: 30 Low-level and easy walks - NorthGuidebook describing 30 walks in Snowdonia, Wales. Routes are mostly low level and on clear paths and showcase the region's beautiful scenery and rich history and culture. Part of a 2-volume set, this northern volume includes the Snowdon area, the Ogwen and Conwy Valleys, Betws-y-Coed, Beddgelert, Ffestiniog and the coast.
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