Home » Routes » Europe » Wales » Snowdonia National Park » Wyddfa - Snowdon » Secret Snowdonia – Craig Fach from Pen y Pass

Secret Snowdonia – Craig Fach from Pen y Pass

By Dave Roberts   

on August 14, 2015    No ratings yet.

Secret Snowdonia – Craig Fach from Pen y Pass

Further Details

Route Summary:

A short walk to a gem of a shorter summit – Craig Fach – with excellent views and a grassy ridge in descent.

Route Start Location: Pen y Pass

3.68 km 247 m 1.5 hours

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

Activivity Type: Moderate Walk

Summits and Places on this Route


There’s a good cafe at Pen y Pass these days, as well as public toilets in the same block. Over the road you’ll find Mallory’s Bar in the Pen y Pass Youth Hostel.


Pathless sections on descent might prove difficult in mist for the inexperienced walker

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 : LL55 4NY

LIMITED! £10 a day, £6 for 4 hours. Very early arrival advised. Park in Nant Peris for the Park and Ride.

Public Transport:

Sherpa Buses from Llanberis, Betws-y-Coed, Beddgelert, Caernarfon and Porthmadog stop at Pen y Pass at varying frequencies. Check out the Snowdon Sherpa page on Walk up Snowdon for the latest Snowdon Sherpa rundown.

Traveline for UK Public Transport

Recommended Maps


Secret Snowdonia – Craig Fach from Pen y Pass Ordnance Survey Map and GPX File Download

Download file for GPS

Secret Snowdonia – Craig Fach from Pen y Pass

There are few, if any 600m summits that can be completed in a 4km round trip, with Craig Fach being one of them. While this name will ring very few bells, it’s not a summit on the usual lists and just misses out on being one of the Welsh 118 Washis as there’s only a 40m drop between it and Crib Goch. However, it’s one of the most amazing viewpoints for Llyn Llydaw as well as being better known as the first nail on the Snowdon Horseshoe.  It’s the highest point of Y Cyrniau or The Horns and a glance on the map really doesn’t make this 1km of grassy ridge stand out.

Don’t let the distance and ascent lead you into complacency. This is still mountain territory, and having no clear path is more difficult in some respects than the usual paths up Snowdon!

This Secret Snowdonia walk is highly recommended if you’ve arrived in Snowdonia on a Friday afternoon with a few hours to spare.

craig fach (4 of 45)

1 The walk starts off from Pen y Pass, following the PYG track initially for 1.6km. That’s essentially the ascent sorted out, and almost half the distance, but with the best to come. Once the PYG Track arrives at Bwlch y Moch, with its double stile and Crib Goch’s ‘elf and safely gorn mad’ signs, stop to take in the view of Yr Wyddfa. From this point onwards, the views are phenomenal.

craig fach (5 of 45)

2 It’s only a short walk to the summit, which is essentially a huge slab of slanted rock. After a bit of a play on this, there’s a second lower summit past a small pond that provides more comfort and an excellent viewpoint.

craig fach (8 of 45) craig fach (16 of 45)

3 The ridge ahead, along The Horns / Y Cyrniau provides an interesting enough descent, with plenty of viewpoints. The The terrain undulates in a mini-ridge, which would add something to any ascent of the Snowdon Horseshoe or as an alternative ascent to the PYG track. Either way, you’ll avoid the crowds.

craig fach (17 of 45)

4  It has a lofty feel, and the mini ‘horn’s on the way provide you with more photo opportunities. There’s a ridge that veers off south towards Llyn Llydaw that provides an alternative descent, but we continued along the ridge as far as we could.

craig fach (31 of 45)

5 Eventually, only 600m or so after the summit, the terrain flattens out and you need to keep an eye out for a stile in the fence to your right. This follows a very faint path that’s marked on the map, down to the Miner’s Track. It’s tricky to follow, and zig-zags, but with care the terrain isn’t too difficult this side.

craig fach (36 of 45)

6 Of course, we had to finish off in Mallory’s, just to check it out of course!

craig fach (40 of 45)

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.
Share this – [Sassy_Social_Share]

Please rate this

More Posts By This Author

Leave a Reply