Y Llethr & Diffwys from Dyffryn Ardudwy
|Ordnance Survey Explorer OL18||Sheet Map||1:25k||BUY|
|Anquet OS Explorer OL18||Digital Map||1:25k||BUY|
|Ordnance Survey Landranger 124||Sheet Map||1:50k||BUY|
|Anquet OS Landranger 124||Digital Map||1:50k||BUY|
It is recommended you take a map. The preferred scale is 1:25k.
Walk Route Description
This lengthy circuit of the southern Rhinogs offers a great day in the hills. In contrast to the northern peaks of the range, which are rugged and rocky, this hike takes in the smoother but no less interesting peaks of Diffwys and Y Llethr.
The start of this Snowdonia walk is a small car park (grid ref SH603230) at the end of the lane leading to Gors y Gedol Hall from the A496 Barmouth to Harlech road just north of the village of Tal-y-bont. After parking go through the gate and follow the track heading east. This track, after a pair of right angled bends, reaches open country with the rounded shape of Moelfre on your left. Stay with the main track, ignoring the right fork that leads down to Pont Scethin. An indistinct path forks left (grid ref. 635242) and this heads up to the col on the eastern side of Moelfre.
You will soon pick up a more obvious path and this leads up to a wall which is followed for some way as it climbs steadily towards the first objective - the rounded summit of Y Llethr. As you climb the views improve rapidly and reaching a junction of walls turn left to climb steeply northwards to the cairn that marks the summit. For the best views continue over the top towards Rhinog Fach and you will find some rocks that offer grandstand views over Llyn Hywel to the rugged northern Rhinogs.
Retrace your steps past the summit and drop down to the wall junction mentioned above. With the wall on your left head roughly south along the top of Crib-y-rhiw where steep crags plunge to the wide valley below. The undulating path meanders through pleasant rocky outcrops before climbing more seriously to the summit of Diffwys.
If you are lucky and the weather is good then you will be rewarded with a superb view across the Mawddach estuary to Cadair Idris with the rarely visited summit of Y Garn also in view. Stay with the wall as you head south from the trig point turning west and staying with the wall over smooth upland to an intermediate spot height of 642 metres. Continue on the ridge path crossing a wall to reach a path that heads north down towards Pont Scethin. In bad visibility this may be hard to find. However at the point where the descending path meets the ridge path, there is a gate and a stile in the wall, and a cairn marking the descent about 10 yards to the right of the path.
This path was apparently the old Dolgellau to Harlech road although it is hard to imagine a coach and horses crossing this landscape in bad weather. The descent to Pont Scethin is straightforward and after crossing this old bridge you are soon back on the track you used for the outward sector of this walk. All that remains is steady plod back to the car park.
As with many mountain hikes this is one to save for fine weather. The views are without doubt some of the best in Southern Snowdonia with a variety of landscape seen on few walks. In addition there are many areas of water which add interest to the views.
Other walks nearby
Walk 1746 Bwlch y Rhiwgyr & Pont Scethin - moderate - 9.8 miles/15.9 km
Walk 1194 Bwlch Drws-Ardudwy from Cwm Nantcol - easy - 4.5 miles/7.3 km
Walk 1644 Cregennen Lakes from Barmouth - moderate - 11.0 miles/17.9 km
Walk 1647 Mawddach Bridge and Arthog from Barmouth - easy - 5.4 miles/8.8 km
Walk 3229 A Mawddach circular from Arthog near Fairbourne - moderate - 9.0 miles/14.6 km
Walk 1191 Rhinog Fawr & Gloyw Lyn from Cwm Bychan - mod/hard - 5.0 miles/8.1 km
Walk 2544 Rhinog Fach circular - moderate - 8.0 miles/13 km
Walk 1036 Rhinog Fach & Y Llethr from Craigddu Isaf - moderate - 9.0 miles/14.6 km
Walk 1173 Moel Ysgyfarnogod - moderate - 6.5 miles/10.6 km
Walk 1172 Cadair Idris by the Pony Path - mod/hard - 11.0 miles/17.9 km
Recommended Books & eBooks
Snowdonia: 30 Low-level and easy walks - South
Guidebook 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.
Mountain Walking in Snowdonia
Guidebook to 40 of Snowdonia's best day walks, with routes up Snowdon and Tryfan, including the Snowdon Horseshoe, Cadair Idris, Y Garn and The Rhinogs. The routes range from Grade 1 scrambles like Crib Goch or Bristly Ridge, to riverside and forest walks. Includes details of a 2-day traverse of all 15 of Snowdonia's 3000ft peaks.
The National Trails
This inspirational guidebook looks at each of the UK's 19 National Trails, with information that allows ease of comparison and contrast, inspiring you to find out more and to take up a long-distance challenge. Some Trails are short and easy, others much longer, many have strong themes - they may follow a coastline, or traverse ranges of hills.