Bwlch Drws-Ardudwy from Cwm Nantcol
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It is recommended you take a map. The preferred scale is 1:25k.
Walk Route Description
The Rhinog Mountains in Snowdonia have a reputation for being rugged and rocky and this may be the reason why they see few walkers compared with the better known peaks of the Snowdonia National Park. This Snowdonia walk offers a relatively easy excursion allowing you to explore the possibilities of further walking in this very special part of Wales and it gives you a real sense of being right in the mountains.
Leave the main coast road at Llanbedr (on the A496 3 miles south of Harlech) and follow the lanes inland through wonderful country to reach the broad valley of Cwm Nantcol. Continue up the lane as far as you can to reach Maes-y-garnedd, an isolated farm at the head of the valley, where parking is available for a small fee (grid ref. SH641270).
The walk itself is an out and back excursion to the col between Rhinog Fawr and Rhinog Fach. The scenery is excellent, a mixture of rock and heather with excellent views throughout. After parking go through the gate on the east side of the track and take the clear path that heads northeast. All you need to do is follow the path until you reach the col, Bwlch Drws-Ardudwy, which marked by a large cairn.
At times the way is a little boggy but generally the route offers no other difficulties. On reaching the col there is an excellent view across to Lake Trawsfynydd and the Arenigs. You can also take time to contemplate whether the Rhinogs fit your style of walking - look south from the col and you can see the steep path heading to the summit of Rhinog Fach! You might even try some off-path walking - just look out for the large rocks hidden amongst the calf high heather! Whatever your verdict the Rhinogs offer great routes, excellent scenery and ever changing panoramas - don't let the terrain put you off.
After taking in the delights of this wonderful natural rockery retrace your steps to where you parked. In two or three hours you will have discovered the delights and challenges of the Rhinog mountains. I'll wager most will be back for more!
Other walks nearby
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 1193 Y Llethr & Diffwys from Dyffryn Ardudwy - mod/hard - 11.5 miles/18.7 km
Walk 1746 Bwlch y Rhiwgyr & Pont Scethin - moderate - 9.8 miles/15.9 km
Walk 1173 Moel Ysgyfarnogod - moderate - 6.5 miles/10.6 km
Walk 3227 Rhinog Fawr and nearby tarns - mod/hard - 15.0 miles/24.4 km
Walk 2713 A traverse of the Northern Rhinogs - mod/hard - 14.0 miles/22.8 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
Recommended Books & eBooks
Great Mountain Days in Snowdonia
Inspirational guidebook to 40 great mountain day walks and scrambles in Snowdonia. Inspirational routes for all abilities across the National Park with routes up Snowdon and Moel Eilio, the Glyderau, the Carneddau, Eifionydd, Siabod and the Moelwynion, Rhinogydd (the Harlech Dome), Migneint and the Arans and Cadair Idris and the Tarrens.
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.
This pocket handbook to navigation will help you master the necessary map and compass skills for mountain walking. Chapters include map scales, symbols and contours, grid references, map reading, bearings, route planning and night and bad-weather navigation, as well as navigating with a GPS.