The Watkin Path up Snowdon offers an alternative to the more popular walks from Llanberis and Pen y Pass....
A short walk on good woodland paths and quiet country lanes.
Distance: 7.5 Kms
Ascent: 281 metres
Time: 2 hous
Start and Finish: Car park in Nanmor
Facilities: None on the route.
None – you can start the walk from Nantmor village which has buses and the Welsh Highland Railway from Porthmadog and Beddgelert.
Parking: Free parking - usually quiet.
Parking Post Code for Sat Nav: LL55 4YL
Coed Dolfriog Nantmor Easy Walk
This is a moderately easy walk from Nanmor near Beddgelert through the Coed Dolfriog woodland. Alternatively, the walk can be started from the Welsh Highland Railway at Nantmor and adding a couple of kilometres to the route and joining it at section 2 below.
1 Start the walk at the old picnic site in Nanmor. It’s currently abused by ‘wild campers’, with old fires peppered all around. Head down the country lane towards Porthmadog/Nantmor. The cliffs of Yr Arddu dominat the left side of the valley, and the woodland that you’ll be walking through the other side. Even road walking can be pleasant!
2 After around 1.6km, turn right at the junction and continue along the country lane for a further 500m where you’ll spot the footpath into the woodland to your right.
3 The footpath is good and reasonably dry, with signs of being an ancient track along the entire route. The initial section is open coniferous forest with little to see, but you’ll soon reach more open ground at SH613 463 where other paths from Nantmor join the route.
4 The path keeps to the right of the flat and boggy area, and follows an improbably dry route along the edge of the bog.
5 Continue on the path, taking the left hand junctions as two paths veer off back to the road here. You can follow the first one directly to the start of the walk, but you’ll need to cross the stream on a good ford to do so.
6 The track continues into the forest, puling up over a spur on well built zig-zags before losing all the height again. This section is ancient woodland, and the track is surprisingly well built. Not as surprising as the cottage that then appears out of nowhere, with only the path for access. Annoyingly, you need to walk around the cottage on a narrower path. Ensure that you do not follow the track uphill just beyond this, and take the descending path.
7 Eventually the path descends from the forest into what looks like a cricket pitch. The owner’s of Buarthau can certainly boast an impressive lawn, which you cross to the right. The path then continues across the drive, sign posted before crossing a slighlty brackeny section. The path now follows the Nanmor stream directly to the country lane. The final section of right of way has been obstructed (locked gate) and you need to follow what appears as a begrudging permissive path along the stream. The far end of the ROW isn’t blocked, but the reminder that this isn’t a right of way is still in your face.
8 Finally cross the stile and join the country lane, turning right to return to the start in a couple of kilometres.woodland walk