Snowdonia’s Best Kept Trail Running Secret? Uwchgwyfai Common
|8.55 km||236 m|
Calculate the time using Naismith’s Rule and factor in your own pace.
Start and Finish:
Snowdonia’s Best Kept Trail Running Secret? Uwchgwyfai Common Route Map and GPX Download
Snowdonia’s Best Kept Trail Running Secret? Uwchgwyfai Common Details
While Snowdonia has a glut of fell running routes (get on a hill and start running!) this makes finding a trail running challenge a bit more difficult. By that, we mean something where you can get decent distance under your belt without having to cover the equivalent in ascent!
The Uwchgwyrfai Common, on the edge of Snowdonia provides the trail runner with some excellent criss crossing trails without too much ascent. Couple that with a number of minor summits (Moel Tryfan and Moel Smytho) and you’ve got the perfect trail run, summit and all.
You can access the Uwchgwyrfai Common from the road between Rhosgadfan and Waunfawr (noted right) or from the village of Y Fron, near Carmel, which is near Groeslon (we could be here all night!).
We’re not going to provide a step by step route for this one! In fact, we think this is one route that’s best run serendipitously! I’ve walked and run this area countless times and even tonight ran along a new path!
The route starts on the small car park as noted on the location to the right (use the route finder!) and follows the concrete track towards a couple of enclosed farmhouses in the first instance before heading off between them along a track. At this point you can head off on any track you find (avoiding gorse!) but you’re better off continuing south on the clear path towards another enclosure and past a large modernised house.
Keep heading south, pass a collection of houses on the common (tarmac) and take the first right onto the heather moorland as soon as you can! Now the adventure starts! There are some waypoints for the North Wales Pilgrim’s Way which you can follow south in the first instance, but beyond that, the fun’s in exploring! This provides the main route south, while there’s another path further east along the forestry and common edge that provides another.
The main points of interest would be to head towards Llyn Ffynhonnau which is an excellent viewpoint towards the Nantlle Ridge.
Moel Tryfan, a bit off the main trail, but worth a visit.
Moel Smytho on the way back provides a final viewpoint towards Anglesey and Caernarfon Bay. Skirt around it’s eastern side for a rough and sketchy path.
Mynydd Mawr – for those aspiring to fell run!
Views are extensive across to Moel Eilio and Yr Wyddfa, making this an excellent place to run.
Beware, this are will need a bit of navigation in mist and while it’s often muddy underfoot, isn’t overly boggy.