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Tryfan Heather Terrace Scramble

By Dave Roberts   

on April 18, 2017    5/5 (2)

Tryfan Heather Terrace Scramble

Further Details

Route Summary:

An alternative to the tougher Tryfan North Ridge, that’s still a tough and challenging route.

This walk includes the Washi of Tryfan

This walk includes the Hewitt of Tryfan

This walk includes the Nuttall of Tryfan

Route Start Location:

6.72 km 707 m 5 hours

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

Activivity Type: 

Summits and Places on this Route


Visitor centre with toilets and snacks at Ogwen.



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 : LL57 3LZ

Limited parking available. Pavement parkers on the A5 will rightly be ticketed.

Public Transport:

Infrequent Sherpa buses from Bangor and Betws y Coed.

Traveline for UK Public Transport

Recommended Maps


Tryfan Heather Terrace Scramble Ordnance Survey Map and GPX File Download

Download file for GPS

Tryfan Heather Terrace Scramble

Tryfan Heather Terrace is one of the three main (non climber) routes up to the summit of Tryfan, with the Tryfan North Ridge and Tryfan South Ridge being the other two. The Tryfan Heather Terrace is still a tough route with route finding difficulties aplenty. While it’s definitely easier than the North Ridge, it’s a very tough walk and as it finishes off on the South Ridge, is marginally harder than the South Ridge done alone.

The Tryfan Heather Terrace is DEFINITELY NOT an easy route up Tryfan. See this news article explaining how someone died thinking it was an ‘easy’ route according to a guidebook. Our opinion is clear – if you don’t possess the skills to be safe on a mountain, go with someone who does – even if you have to pay them.

This route also takes a more direct start to the route, with an alternative option being to set up the Cwm Tryfan Path from Gwern Gof Uchaf and turning right at the top of Tryfan Bach to join the route at around point 3.

Heather Terrace Route Description

1 The route starts from Glan Dena on the A5 (Sat Nav Post Code – LL24 0EU) where a good path sets off towards Capel Curig. After 100m or so, take the stile to the right and head off along a faint path directly towards Tryfan Bach.

tryfan heather terrace

2 On reaching the cliffs below Tryfan Bach, you’ll need to begin to veer to your right towards the heathery and rocky slopes of Tryfan. The path is sketchy initially, but becomes clearer as you gain height.

tryfan heather terrace

3 The target is now an obvious notch in the skyline, which becomes increasingly steep and scrambly as you ascend to a slightly flatter area above. You can also get here by following the North Ridge path for around 300m from the road.

tryfan heather terrace

4 The next section is horrible scree, but you’ll be glad that the Heather Terrace Proper starts at the end of this section.

tryfan heather terrace

5 The Heather Terrace now follows a convenient ledge along the eastern face of Tryfan, allowing views up at climbers and down at walkers in Cwm Tryfan. It’s not particularly exposed, if at all for a mountain path, and provides a steady ascent up to Tryfan Far South Peak with only the final section being a bit of a pull.

tryfan heather terrace

6 From Tryfan Far South Peak, you’ll need to work your way across to the main summit, with a few scrambles which can either be tackled or worked around – but with one exposed step just before the summit that is the only part that we’d consider to be exposed or your experienced hill walker.

tryfan heather terrace

7 Finally the summit, with Adam and Eve and a load of other people who’ve probably come up a different route to you.

tryfan heather terrace

8 Descent is back along the South Ridge, taking care not to veer too far right. The path down is clear enough once you’re on it – though is easily lost as you scramble across to the next section. So care is needed on this section!

tryfan heather terrace

9 Once you reach Bwlch Tryfan, the excitement’s practically over. You can descend via Cwm Bochlwyd or an easier descent via Cwm Tryfan. The path is clear and wide, though some sections on the initial descent can be tricky to follow due to the heather.

tryfan heather terrace

10 Once on the main Cwm Tryfan Path, it can be easily followed back to Gwern Gof Uchaf, with the final descent to the right of Tryfan Bach. Once at Gwen Gof Uchaf, turn left on the track to return to the start.

tryfan heather terrace

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.
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