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Snowdonia Walk
Yr Aran and Snowdon from Rhyd-Ddu

Nat Park - Snowdonia - Snowdon Crib Goch

County/Area - Gwynedd

Author - Peter Lane

Length - 8.5 miles / 13.8 km    Ascent - 3700 feet / 1121 metres

Time - 8 hours 0 minutes    Grade - mod/hard

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Walk Route Description

Photo from the walk - Yr Aran and Snowdon from Rhyd-Ddu
Click image to visit gallery of 12 images.

This Snowdonia walk visits the isolated summit of Yr Aran which, although absent from the exalted list of 3,000 foot peaks in Snowdonia, more than makes up for its isolation and lack of stature with its spectacular views. Enjoy a great panorama across to Y Lliwedd and the Watkins path. The route then continues with an excellent ridge walk via Bwlch Main to Snowdon itself. The walk is rounded off with a full descent of the well marked and well maintained Rhyd Ddu path.

Start at the Rhyd Ddu car park at SH571526 on the A4085 from Beddgelert to Caernarfon. Cross the light railway and follow the well defined Rhyd Ddu path generally East until it comes to a crossing point and heads off North East to Snowdon. Ignore this (noting that it is your return point after conquering Snowdon) and continue on the Eastward path. Coming to a small lake, quarry workings and mine works at Bwlch Cwm Llan.

Cross a wall and keeping it to your right follow it over some very wet ground, initially. Eventually you will climb to a ridge facing the Watkins path far below, looking East. Here turn right upwards to the summit. Take time to enjoy the glorious views from the summit cairn, you're unlikely to meet anyone else there!

Retrace to Bwlch Cwm Llan and then head up due North on the long ridge to Bwlch Main and Snowdon. This is a spectacular (and strenuous!) route, but is rewarded by incredible views to Y Lliwedd to the East. The final section of the climb at Bwlch Main meets the Rhyd Ddu path feeding in from the left and passes over a short knife edge arrete which, although not as airy as Crib Goch, provides a taster of the "daddy" of the genre. The path is quite safe and adequately wide, with plenty of room for people to pass.

Continue up to Snowdon "via the back door" as it were, arriving at the concrete pad behind the cafe. Mingle with the masses and then retrace to Bwlch Main and the Rhyd Ddu path that you will have noticed feeding in on the ascent. Follow this well defined route down towards the shapely Llechog cliffs below, the path marked by numerous cairns to continue down to the pastures below over a paved route. Finally retrace your steps at the first junction back to the car park.

Other walks nearby

Walk 2590 Nantlle Ridge Walk from Rhyd Ddu (Route A)moderate6.0 miles
Walk 3509 Nantlle Ridge from Rhyd Ddu (Route B)mod/hard8.3 miles
Walk 3198 Snowdon via the South Ridge & Rhyd-ddu Pathmod/hard7.5 miles
Walk 1951 Mynydd Mawr from Rhyd-Ddumoderate6.0 miles
Walk 2729 Snowdon by Rhyd-Ddu and Snowdon Ranger Pathsmod/hard7.5 miles

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Accommodation Nearby

Glyn Peris
5.3 miles / 8.5 km away
Black Boy Inn
8.6 miles / 13.8 km away
Tyn Y Berth Talsarnau
10.7 miles / 17.2 km away
Gwrach Ynys Country Guest House
11.5 miles / 18.5 km away
Dinas Caravan Park & Camping
14.0 miles / 22.4 km away

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