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Y Garn & Carnedd y Filiast Ogwen Cottage

Snowdonia/Eryri Walk

Nat Park - Snowdonia - Glyders Tryfan

County/Area - Gwynedd

Author - Lou Johnson

Length - 8.5 miles / 13.8 km    Ascent - 3300 feet / 1000 metres

Time - 7 hours 30 minutes    Grade - hard

Maps Ordnance Survey Logo Anquet Maps Logo

Ordnance Survey Explorer OL17Sheet Map1:25kBUY
Anquet OS Explorer OL17Digital Map1:25kBUY
Ordnance Survey Landranger 115Sheet Map1:50kBUY
Anquet OS Landranger 115Digital Map1:50kBUY

Walk Route Description

Photo from the walk - Y Garn & Carnedd y Filiast Ogwen Cottage
Click image to visit gallery of 6 images.

An ascent of Y Garn by itself is a rewarding experience but combined with a high level route, which overlooks Nant Francon, it becomes a high quality walk. This Snowdonia (Eryri) walk does involve a rough descent and is not for walkers who prefer clear paths. You could, of course, retrace your steps and convert the route to an out and back walk. The start is at Ogwen Cottage on the A5 Bangor to Capel Curig road (grid ref. SH649603) where there is a small car park and refreshment kiosk.

Take the signed footpath to Llyn Idwal, which initially sets off in a south-easterly direction but soon turns south-west. The path has recently been improved and you soon reach the footbridge over the outlet from Llyn Idwal. Situated in a superb Cwm this lake is one of the "gems" of Snowdonia (Eryri). Cross the footbridge and follow the northern shore of the lake. Leave the shore path and take the obvious route heading almost due west to begin the ascent of Y Garn.

The climb to the summit of Y Garn is described in greater detail in Walk 1186 which would offer a viable alternative if you were short of time or if the weather deteriorated. Assuming you have reached Y Garn's airy summit, you need to descend north keeping to the edge of the crags, which are on your right hand side. The going is easy and on reaching a col you start the ascend once more to reach Foel-goch, which is also blessed with a superb summit with crags dropping steeply to the floor of nant Francon.

Another descent and ascent northwards bring you to Mynydd Prefedd. This is a less dramatic summit but it offers great views especially to Elidir Fawr. The final section of the high level route includes a section along the edge of the amazing "Atlantic Slab", which is a steeply inclined rock face.

On reaching the final summit, Carnedd y Filiast, you have completed the high level section. The descent into the valley is rough and largely without a path. Care needs to be exercised that you locate the route and it is suggested you leave the cairn on a bearing of 75 degrees. At first the going is quite easy but as you descend the going gets rougher especially when the vegetation is high. The OS map shows a sheepfold (grid ref. 626634) and this provides a useful point to aim for. From here you descend over rough ground to reach the road (grid ref. 630637) just to the north of Tai-newyddion.

All that remains is a pleasant section of ro along the valley with an excellent view ahead especially as you get nearer to Ogwen Cottage. Passing Blaen-y-nant on your left you are rewarded with a superb view with the falls in valley and the high mountains providing a magnificent backdrop.

Other walks nearby

Walk 2650 Tryfan, the Glyders & Y Garnvery hard8.0 miles
Walk 2820 Carneddau traverse from Llyn Ogwenmod/hard14.0 miles
Walk 1150 The High Carneddauhard10.0 miles
Walk 1215 Tryfan & Llyn Ogwen from Ogwen Valleymod/hard5.5 miles
Walk 3001 Tryfan North Ridge from Ogwen Valleyhard3.5 miles
Walk 3026 Tryfan & the Eastern Tops from Ogwen Valleyhard5.8 miles
Walk 1232 Carnedd Llewelyn, Llyn Eigiau & Llyn Cowlydhard16.0 miles
Walk 2855 Gallt yr Ogof & Braich y Ddeugwmmoderate4.0 miles
Walk 3056 Pen yr Helgi Du from Ogwen Valleymoderate5.5 miles
Walk 1074 The Glyders Traversevery hard12.0 miles

Recommended Books & eBooks

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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The Wales Coast Path

The Wales Coast PathA single guidebook to walking the whole Wales Coast Path - 1400km (870 miles) the length of Wales from Chester to Chepstow, including Anglesey, described in 57 stages. The route passes through the Snowdonia and Pembrokeshire National Parks and many AONBs and can be linked with the Offa's Dyke Path for a complete circuit of Wales.
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