Walk up Snowdon via the Llanberis Path
Route Summary: Longest and most straightforward route to the summit of Snowdon
Longest and most straightforward route to the summit of Snowdon
|7.41 km||945 m||3.5 hours|
Calculate the time using Naismith’s Rule and factor in your own pace.
Start and Finish: Llanberis - Snowdon Summit
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Walk up Snowdon via the Llanberis Path Route Map and GPX DownloadDownload file for GPS
Walk up Snowdon via the Llanberis Path Details
This has to be the most popular and easiest route to the summit of Snowdon, Wales’ highest mountain. In normal weather, it poses no problems for the fit walker, with even the navigation being reasonably easy. On a fine day, you’ll be able to follow the hordes of other people who have also decided to follow the Llanberis Path – aka the Motorway.
It’s a steady pull once you pass the initial pull up the minor road, and you’ll have time to enjoy the route until about 2/3 rds of the way you’ll hit the real climb of Allt Moses. It’s then a real pull, but once above this it again steadies out and you’ll soon be at the summit!
Be warned that in winter conditions, the section between the top of Allt Moses and the junction with the PYG / Ranger is known as the Killer Convex for good reason! In snow, the path vanishes and you end up having to contour across a very steep slope. Even fully equipped for winter, this can be hairy!
Llanberis Path up Snowdon Full Route Description
The Llanberis path starts from the end of Victoria Terrace in Llanberis – LL55 4TR – however, there’s no parking here and you’ll need to walk here from one of the parking areas in the village.
1 From the starting point, the route follows a rather relentless tarmac track for the first kilometre or so, to what could be argued to be the true start of the Llanberis Path. Pass the Pen y Ceunant Tea Rooms (which are also licenced, and worth a visit on the way down), and then continue along the road through a gate and past a barn. The Llanberis Path proper is found soon enough to the left.
2 The going is now steadier than the initial tarmac yomp, and steadily takes you onward and upwards – with little in the way of complications or variation.
3 After 2km, you’ll pass under the Snowdon Mountain Railway, and then the path continues. While the path itself lacks interest, there are at least views across to Moel Eilio and Moel Cynghorion to keep you going.
4 Another kilometre on the track, and you’ll come to the Half Way House – which sell welcome refreshments. The bad news is that it’s not quite at the half way point – which is only true in that it’s height is literally half that of the summit, and so a little short of the walks half way point.
5 Yet more track beckons, but at least Snowdon and Clogwyn Du’r Arddu is now coming closer. Enjoy this last kilometre on the track, as this is where the route becomes a bit more serious. It’s then a steep half kilometre pull up Allt Moses to Clogwyn Station. This is where you notice most people flagging, as it’s the first steep section since the tarmac at the beginning.
6 Finally – at the top of this section, the route begins to become more interesting. With views down into the Llanberis Pass across to the Glyderau in one direction and back to Clogwyn Du’r Arddu in the other. Take a breather, as the path doesn’t relent. It continues in a similar vein as it gains height as it contours beneath Garnedd Ugain and along the section known as the Killer Convex. In winter, the path snows over and all you’re left with is a steep slope to traverse. Any slip on this section can send you down along the convex slope, gaining speed and thrown over Clogwyn Coch, with numerous lives lost over the years.
7 It eventually relents – just as you arrive at the meeting of the ways. At Bwlch Glas, the Llanberis Path joins the PYG and Miner’s from Pen y Pass and the Ranger Path. There are also more extensive views, down towards Crib Goch in one direction and the hills of Moel Hebog and the Nantlle Ridge in the other. The final section is steady, and finally feels like a mountain walk.
8 The summit is finally reached along proper steps – and you’ll hopefully not need to queue to reach the trig point at the top! At peak times, it can be awful, and on quieter days it can still be packed if you happen to arrive just as a trainload of tourists arrive.
In descent – the Llanberis Path offers no specific difficulty, other than ensuring you follow the proper path at the junction with the Ranger and PYG/Miner’s track and don’t find yourself down in the wrong valley!