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All the Walking Routes up Moel Siabod in Eryri (Snowdonia)

By Dave Roberts   

on January 30, 2023    4.44/5 (9)

All the Walking Routes up Moel Siabod in Eryri (Snowdonia)

Facts and Figures about Moel Siabod

Moel Siabod Facts: 
  • Moel Siabod has only three ridges to the summit, yet it still provides a wide variety of routes.
  • It is regarded as one of the finest viewpoints in Eryri (Snowdonia). As a bonus, the start of the Plas y Brenin route takes you past Llynnau Mymbyr which is itself a well regarded photography location for those who don’t wish to wander far from their car.
  • It may be hard to believe it today, but the summit used to have refreshment huts to serve the victorian tourists who were carried up on ponies, as heaven forbid they did any walking!
  • Not really regarded as part of any other range – it really is the Lonely Mountain. It does have the company of Carnedd y Cribau, a remote and seldom visited minor top that is included on one of the routes here.
Where is Moel Siabod?

Moel Siabod can be found in the north eastern corner of Eryri (Snowdonia), near Capel Curg between Llanberis and Betws-y-coed.

How High is Moel Siabod in metres / feet?
872 metres in height
How long will it take to walk up Moel Siabod ?

The shortest route takes in the region of 2-3 hours one way, depending on fitness. Strong walkers should easily find their way up and down in that time.

How Far is it to the top of Moel Siabod? 

The shortest route up Moel Siabod at 4km is from Plas y Brenin.

How hard is it to climb Moel Siabod 

Moel Siabod is one of the less difficult mountains in Eryri, but still commands respect. Some navigation is needed on all paths, some are pathless and Daear Ddu is classed as a Grade I Scramble.

What’s the best walking route up Moel Siabod?

Daear Ddu is the  best and toughest route up Moel Siabod.

Which is the easiest walking route up Moel Siabod ?

From Plas y Brenin

Map showing all the routes up Moel Siabod

View the full route map

All the Walking Routes up Moel Siabod in Eryri (Snowdonia) Introduction

Carnedd Moel Siabod may be a solitary mountain, but it has a number of distinct walking, hiking and scrambling routes up. The usual tourist path from Capel Curig, Eryri (Snowdonia), the wide grassy ridge of Moel Gid from Pen-y-gwryd, The NE ridge from Pont Cyfyng and  the Daear Ddu Scramble which can be walked from either Pont Cyfyng or Dolwyddelan. The walking highlights of Moel Siabod have to be the views across Eryri (Snowdonia), especially towards Yr Wyddfa / Snowdon, as well as the scramble up Daear Ddu. Llyn y Foel is as perfectly situated a mountain tarn as you’ll find, and one that’s been on my wild camping to do list for far to long.

What pubs and cafes are good for Moel Siabod? 

There’s plenty of options for the thirsty walker, with the Bryn Tyrch and Tyn-y-Coed in Capel being particular favourites. Plas y Brenin also has a cafe/bar and is perfectly placed at the start of the most popular walking route. There’s also the Pen y Gwryd to consider if you descend on that side of the mountain and the cosy Gwydyr Hotel in Dolwyddelan. There’s also, quite appropriately, the Siabod Cafe as well as plenty more facilities in nearby Betws-y-coed. Those who have been coming to the area for a while should note that the Pinnacle Cafe and Stores are now closed and replaced with a Joe Brown shop.

Recommended Moel Siabod Maps: 

Note that Siabod finds itself unceremoniously placed at the corner of the two north Snowdonia Outdoor Leisure OS maps, so you’ll need both! We printed our own map for the Moelwynion using one of the various services online in order to have the range on one easy to read map (we did the same for the Carneddau too!)

OS Explorer OL17 Snowdon & Conwy ValleySnowdonia BMC (British Mountain Map)  Explorer OL18 Harlech, Porthmadog & Bala MapLandranger 115 Snowdon & Caernarfon

Moel Siabod Weather Forecast: 

Met Office Snowdonia Mountain Weather Moel Siabod

Here’s our run-down of all the Walks up Moel Siabod. Route stats are for one way unless otherwise stated!

Walk up Moel Siabod From Capel Curig

Height Gained – 700 metres,  Distance – 5 km, Time –3 hours.

This is the direct route up to Moel Siabod from Capel Curig that starts from the outdoor centre at Plas y Brenin. It starts off with a steady plod through the forest, followed by a steady plod up the hill to the summit of Moel Siabod. Despite being regarded as the easier route up Moel Siabod, it can still be difficult to find in descent in mist. This is a good option for a quicker route, or those daunted by the navigation on the other walks. However, the final section to and from the summit is very sketchy and the descent can be nigh on impossible to find in mist. This route is one that is best used as a descent in combination with one of the other routes from Capel Curig. 

Walk up Moel Siabod from Pont Cyfyng

Height Gained – 700 metres,  Distance – 4 km, Time –3 hours.

The walk from Pont Cyfyng, just outside Capel Curig on the road towards Betws-y-coed, is a much more interesting walking route than than the popular path that starts from Plas y Brenin. The NE Ridge is a superior walk along a blunt ridge, skirting the cwm high above Llyn y Foel. Some of the lower reaches can be a bit of a slog. Add around 3km and 50m ascent if you want to start from Capel Curig.

Scramble via Daear Ddu 

Height Gained – 730 metres,  Distance – 5 km, Time –3 hours.

This route can also be reached from Pont Cyfyng via Llyn y Foel or by following the old track between Capel and Dolwyddelan, but it’s often walked from the latter. Wherever you start off, it’s by far the best route up in our opinion. While it may be a scramble, there’s nothing technical about it and is more of a boulder clamber than a scramble. The main danger is navigation as the route isn’t particularly clear (other than keep to the crest and enjoy the scramble!)

It also passes through Llyn y Foel, and the cwm into which it nestles. It’s ideally placed for a lunch stop before the main scramble up the Daear Ddu.

Ideally finish the walk by descending to Pont Cyfyng via the NE Ridge rather than the tourist path for the best loop from Capel Curig, or follow the final route for our best Moel Siabod mountain outing.

The approach from Pen y Gwryd

Height Gained – 600 metres,  Distance – 6 km, Time –3 hours.

This would hardly win awards for the most exciting ascent, being steady and grassy, but is the route you’d ascend by if you were traversing the entire Moelwynion range. It also gives you an off path option, with wild camping options within a quick stroll of the main road. The views back towards Yr Wyddfa (Snowdon) are the highlight of this route, making it the best descent option in fine weather. This route via Bwlch Rhiw’r Uchen can also be approached from Dolwyddelan and Llynau Diwaunydd.

Moel Siabod Via Carnedd y Cribau from Dolwyddelan / Nant Gwynant and Bwlch y Rhediad

Height Gained – 960 metres,  Distance – 19.6 km, Time –7 hours.

This is a longer route and it should go without saying that this one’s a full route at just shy of 20km! It’s also two routes in one. or three if you count the ascent via Bwlch y Rhediad. As a bonus, it takes in the outlying peak of Carnedd y Cribau in descent. It’s a variation on the Daear Ddu ascent, and while this route was completed whilst camping and so avoided the scramble, including Daear Ddu makes this one the best Moel Siabod routes. Carnedd y Cribau is a minor peak, but boasts one of the best (if not the best) view of the Snowdon Horseshoe. There’s some bog to traverse, but that’s part of the fun! You could also ascend via Bwlch y Rhediad for a more natural circuit which also means you can ascend Siabod from Nant Gwynant, which would be a viable linear walk relying on the Sherpa Bus service to get you back to the start.

There’s even a small lake on the summit, and enough room for two small tents!

Local Information and Recommended Maps and Guidebooks

Recommended Maps

Moel Siabod Guidebooks:

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Dave Roberts

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