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Elidir Fawr and Garn From Llanberis

By Dave Roberts   

on May 14, 2014    5/5 (1)

Elidir Fawr and Garn From Llanberis

Further Details

Route Summary:

This walk includes the 3 Washis of Y Garn (Glyderau), Elidir Fawr, Foel-goch

This walk includes the 3 Hewitts of Y Garn (Glyderau), Elidir Fawr, Foel-goch

This walk includes the 4 Nuttalls of Y Garn (Glyderau), Elidir Fawr, Foel-goch, Mynydd Perfedd

Route Start Location:

19.77 km 1345 m

Calculate the time using Naismith’s Rule and factor in your own pace.

Activivity Type: Hard Walk

Summits and Places on this Route


none noted


Remember that we cannot outline every single hazard on a walk – it’s up to you to be safe and competent. Read up on Mountain Safety , Navigation and what equipment you’ll need.

Parking :

Public Transport:

Traveline for UK Public Transport

Recommended Maps


Elidir Fawr and Garn From Llanberis Ordnance Survey Map and GPX File Download

Download file for GPS

Elidir Fawr and Garn From Llanberis

The ascent of Elidir Fawr from Llanberis is a real beast of a slog that almost manages to be as tough as the usual Nant Peris ascent. We detail the ascent only here, as the descent has been detailed elsewhere. You have the option of descending Esgair y Ceunant (steady plot) or Llwybr y Carw which is steep in places and has a couple of sections that are not always obvious from above.

The Route.

Elidir Fawr From Llanberis1 If you start in the village, you’ll need to get over to Gilfach Ddu and the Slate Museum on the other side of the Lake. On the road leading to the museum, which incidentally provides an excellent view towards Crib Goch over Llyn Peris, you’ll find the start of the Zig-zag path up Elidir Fawr.

2 The path ascends quickly between steep slate walls, zig-zagging hence the local name for the path. It is diverted in places as the old path, which the quarrymen would have taken every morning to work, has started to deteriorate.

3 When you reach the old drumhouse and a metal bridge, you need to drop down to your right rathe than following the obvious path forwards. This leads you to the incline which makes for a punishing ascent towards the viewpoint far above. Note the Anglesey Barracks at about half way, where quarrymen from Anglesey would have lived during the week.

Elidir Fawr From Llanberis4 Finally, once the incline has relented, you can walk out to the viewpoint high above the lake. Behind you, the vast quarries of Dinorwig. There’s an incline directly ahead that indicates where we’re headed, but by much easier quarry tracks. The start of the path is past the remains of the mill with a sign that you should not cross the gate! Therefore the following is for information only and we don’t recommend you follow the route at all! Despite this, you’ll see plenty of locals in the quarry, with this particular stretch being a favourite with mountain bikers and particularly sadistic fell runners.

5 – The quarry road twists it’s way slowly upwards between the remains of the slate quarry. There are even sheds in the quarry which still have the quarrymen’s coats from 1969 hanging from the pegs, but they are seriously off path and not easy to find without some knowledge of the quarry’s layout (and probably not allowed either!). It eventually leads you to a tarmac road that’s part of the hydro plant, from which you can choose your attack point on the mountain. They’re all much of a muchness really, and a direct plod as soon as you reach the first hairpin (not including the one you started on) in the road is as good as another.

Elidir Fawr From Llanberis
© Copyright Stephen Elwyn RODDICK and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence

6 – From Elidir Fach there’s a scree path that’s not at all easy to find in mist as it’s not marked on the map and isn’t obvious until you’re actually on it. The gps co-ordinates provided will help, or failing that aim for SH606 613 and with a bit of luck you’ll find it. It’s a steep path that’s unrelenting at this stage, but over as soon as you break a sweat with only a pleasant scramble across the summit before you can collapse in the shelter.

The descent from Elidir Fawr is described here – Elidir Fawr and Y Garn Walk.

I’ve added some images from a winter walk through the quarries as well. For more quarry images visit Geograph – http://www.geograph.org.uk/gridref/SH5960

The highlight of the trip was wild camping above the Devil’s Kitchen –

Elidir Fawr From Llanberis

You can’t wake up to a better view than this (other than I’m in the way).

Elidir Fawr From Llanberis

And possibly, finding a frying pan in the tarn. We intend to return forthwith armed with brillo pads.

Elidir Fawr From Llanberis

Dave Roberts founded Walk Eryri in 2004, with the aim of providing routes that are off the beaten track. Walk Eryri is now part of Mud and Routes which continues to provide more off beat routes and walks in Snowdonia and beyond. Dave has been exploring the hills of Eryri for over thirty years, and is a qualified Mountain Leader. Dave also established Walk up Snowdon, Walk up Scafell Pike and Walk up Ben Nevis just to mention a few.
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1 thought on “Elidir Fawr and Garn From Llanberis”

  1. I did this route on Saturday. It was most enjoyable. I loved wondering around the old slate mine and the views of Llyn Padarn as I made my way up. The strong winds around the summits stopped me from getting too hot.

    The Vaynol Arms was a right little treat as well afterwards.

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