logo Walking Britain

Snowdonia Walk
Glasgwm from Cwm Cywarch

Nat Park - Snowdonia - Arans Lake Bala

County/Area - Gwynedd

Author - Lou Johnson

Length - 4.5 miles / 7.3 km

Ascent - 2375 feet / 720 metres

Time - 4 hours 40 minutes

Grade - moderate

Start - OS grid reference SH852188
Lat 52.751004 // Long -3.70082
Postcode SY20 9JG (approx. location only)

Walk Route Description

Photo from the walk - Glasgwm from Cwm Cywarch Photo from the walk - Glasgwm from Cwm Cywarch Photo from the walk - Glasgwm from Cwm Cywarch Photo from the walk - Glasgwm from Cwm Cywarch Photo from the walk - Glasgwm from Cwm Cywarch Photo from the walk - Glasgwm from Cwm Cywarch
Click thumbnails for larger images.

Occupying an excellent position towards the southern end of the main Aran ridge, Glasgwm provides an excellent objective for a short Snowdonia walk in the mountains. However despite its length the ascent is continuous and the descent quite steep. However considering the short length there is much to see and enjoy. To reach the start, turn off the A458 Welshpool to Dolgellau road at Dinas Mawddwy and follow the narrow lane up the beautiful valley of Cwm Cywarch to reach a signed car park at grid ref. SH852188.

Glasgwm from Cwm Cywarch Glasgwm from Cwm Cywarch Glasgwm from Cwm Cywarch 
Click thumbnails for larger images.

Continue up the lane following the signed path past Blaencywarch Farm, which nestles beneath the awesome crags of Cwm Cywarch. Please take care that you follow the signed path which by-passes the farm before heading left of a smooth rock outcrop. The climbing now begins in earnest and you gain height quickly with the crags closing in around you. During the ascent you cross the stream twice and can enjoy some small waterfalls and the immediate surroundings, which are superb.

As height is gained the retrospective view improves and the col beneath Glasgwm is soon reached (grid ref. 841201). Here the path levels and you reach a small tarn. Ahead there are excellent views north to the Rhinog mountains with Aran Fawddwy rising to almost 3000 feet on your right. Ignore the path to the latter summit and, keeping the tarn on your right, follow the fence on your left to reach a stile. Cross this and turn left to follow the fence uphill. Height is gained quickly and the summit of Glasgwm is soon reached with the fence acting as a guide all the way to the top. The highest point is marked by a large beehive cairn with the large tarn just below the summit on the southern flank coming as a surprise. This spot provides a superb place to enjoy the excellent view and take a rest.

Leave the summit in a southerly direction crossing a ladder stile before heading for an obvious rocky outcrop. A clear path leads you onward with a fence coming in from your right. Keeping the fence on your right continue across open moorland. The path then descends quite steeply over grass to reach a col. Note - to your left are steep crags so care is needed on this section. Ahead you will see a stone track descending steeply down to the left. Join this track and head down into Cwm Cywarch. The going is steep in places although well constructed zigzags mean an easy and fast descent into the valley and the start of the walk.

Please maintain social distancing - keep at least 2 metres away from other walkers. Travel restrictions for exercise in Wales and Scotland will be lifted in early July.

Covid 19 Update for Walkers

Maps Ordnance Survey Logo Anquet Maps Logo

Ordnance Survey Explorer OL23Sheet Map1:25kBUY
Anquet OS Explorer OL23Digital Map1:25kBUY
Ordnance Survey Landranger 124Sheet Map1:50kBUY
Anquet OS Landranger 124Digital Map1:50kBUY

It is recommended you take a map. The preferred scale is 1:25k.

GPS files - right click or option-click the button and choose "Save As..." to download this file.

Recommended Books & eBooks

Cicerone Books

Cicerone PressCicerone Press offer a range of Books and eBooks offering guides to all the popular walking areas and long-distance trails in Britain and overseas. Their illustrated guides feature walks, information and maps to help you make the most of the outdoors.
Explore Cicerone's Catalogue

Social Media

Follow Walking Britain for the latest news.

Facebook Twitter

Walking - Covid 19 update

Regular updates on how Covid 19 will impact on walking in the UK More info.

Mountain Weather

Stay safe on the mountains with detailed weather forecasts - for iOS devices or for Android devices.

Digital Mapping Guide

Digital Mapping Guide - a simple guide of how to start using digital mapping. Includes advice and useful links.