Walk up the Snowdon Ranger Path

Route Summary:

Quieter route up Snowdon that’s not without it’s merits but perhaps not as exciting or dramatic as the approaches from Rhyd Ddu, Pen-y-Pass or the Watkin Path.

Distance
Ascent
Time
6.2 km 894 m 4 hrs

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

Start and Finish: Snowdon Ranger YH

Facilities:

Pub with excellent ales in Rhyd Ddu – Cwellyn Arms and a microbrewery at Waunfawr (Snowdonia Parc Inn) which sells the beer it brews for around £3 a pint (which is cheap in this area as Snowdonia beer prices in places can make Londoners weep).

Check out the businesses nearby for more places to stay and drink.

Hazards:

Some steep sections along the zig zags.

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.

Public Transport:

Sherpa Buses and WHR to Rhyd Ddu.

Traveline for UK Public Transport
Parking and Post Code for Sat Nav (where applicable): LL54 7YS

Plenty available – very rarely full.

Weather Forecast:

Met Office Snowdonia Mountain Weather

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Walk up the Snowdon Ranger Path Route Map and GPX Download

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Recommended Maps

 Guidebooks:

Summits on this Route

Places Nearby

Walk up the Snowdon Ranger Path Details

The Snowdon Ranger path is one of the quieter approaches to the summit of Snowdon which takes it’s name from the Snowdon Ranger YH, or rather from when it was a hotel  which specialised in providing guides for the walk up Snowdon. Starting from the shores of Llyn Cwellyn (and newly christened Lwybr Cwellyn to reflect this in Welsh even if it’s always been Llwybr Snowdon Ranger for the locals since we remember). There’s also a Welsh Highland Railway station at the start of the route.

Snowdon Ranger Walking Route

We can recommend getting to the Snowdon Ranger Path by using the Welsh Hghland Railway.

1 The Snowdon Ranger starts to the side of the Youth Hostel, heading up a track, beside the railway platform before crossing the railway. Note one of the Snowdon Stones here that mark the major routes on the mountain.

Walk up the Snowdon Ranger Path

2 Follow this track uphill to a farmhouse, then take the signposted path right. The track has been recently improved – and while it looks absolutely hideous at the time of writing (June 2018) – this will soon weather and the new track will help tackle the erosion.

3 Now the path zig-zags endlessly, or at least till the skyline is reached.  As you pass through a gate in the stone wall, the ascent soon eases off and you’ll be  rewarded with a view of Yr Wyddfa and an easier section ahead.

4 The path now relents and you’ve got an almost flat section for around 1.5km as far as Bwlch Cwm Brwynog, which marks the start of the next set of zig zags. Its usually customary to take a breather here in preparation!

5 From Bwlch Cwm Brwynog, the Ranger Path is easy enough to follow but steep, despite the zig zagging. There are a number of eroded section that require a bit more care, especially in decent, but the path is largely good with views down to Llyn Ffynon Gwas and to the Nantlle Ridge beyond. After around 1.5km of this uphill climb, the path relents as you arrive onto a broad grassy shoulder with the summit of Snowdon now clear ahead. You’l lprobably spot the walkers on the Llanberis Path far above, and perhaps the train might chug past.

6 A final pull from the grassy shoulder brings you to the railway, which you need to cross with care and you’ll finally arrive at Bwlch Glas where the Snowdon Ranger, Llanberis, PYG and Miner’s Paths all converge before the final assault to the summit of Snowdon.

Walk up the Snowdon Ranger Path

7 Finally, turn right along the widening path which takes you to Hafod Eryri and the summit of Snowdon.

There’s always a strange mix of people up Snowdon, and even at sunset that’s the case. Last time I was up for sunset we passed someone who really did look like a Himalayan Sherpa going up when we were well down. The strangest? A group of elderly ramblers roped up on the Llanberis Path. In snow I could possibly understand it, but it was in summer.  There was also the one time when someone was playing a trumpet on the summit, we could hear them from Glaslyn.

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