A circular, full-day mountain (above 600m) walk in Wales starting at Bangor/Llandudno Junction Stations, Gwynedd, about 6km (roughly 4 miles) long and unsuitable for families with children, prams/pushchairs, wheelchairs. A challenging mountain walk climbing to over 3000 feet to one of Snowdonia's most distinctive mountains. The descent passes the remains of an ice age waterfall into one of Britain's most spectacular glacial cwms. There is even a snack bar at the end whilst you wait for your bus back to civilization! Start: Bangor/Llandudno Junction Stations, OS Grid: SH598604 Elevation Profile (x: waypoint number, y: metres)
Gain (+/- 10%): 612m (2010ft)
Total (+/- 10%): 1147m (3763ft)
Loss (+/- 10%): 534m (1753ft)
Max. Elevation: 910m (2985ft)
Start of the walk Use traveline to link to the SHERPA S6 buses running to Idwal Cottage where the walk starts. From the visitor centre, pick up the main marked footpath climbing steeply south east. There is usually a mountain forecast posted at the visitor centre.
The footpath becomes less steep and forks sharply SW at a junction. Continue heading towards this spectacular lake surrounded by forbidding cliffs on three sides. Look to the far south western shore and you will be able to see your descent route past the Devil's Kitchen.
As the main path turns S, look ahead and try to pick up the faint path heading towards the steepening right hand "arm" of the mountain. Keep to the right (N) side of the watercourse. as you climb very steeply W to reach Cwm Clyd with 2 small corrie lakes ahead of you.
Good spot for a break here- you won't get out of the wind for the rest of the walk. If the clouds are up you should be able to see the ridge to your right leading round to the summit about another 300m above you.Vertigo sufferers watch out, the drop on the N side of the ridge is about 400m!
Another breather in the summit shelter after following the ridge SW then S. Fantastic views back towards the lakes below, and SW to Snowdon. Return the way you came if the weather is iffy otherwise continue carefully SE then S towards Llyn y Cwn along a rough, rocky eroded path.
Glyder Fawr should be looming above you as yo reach the small lake. Look for a path from the lake going E then NE entering a stony runnel.
Follow down the rocky ramp slanting down towards the entrance to the Devil's Kitchen (Leave that to the expert climbers!)
As you continue to descend towards the lake you can choose branching paths which follow either the East ot the West shore. Towering opposite to the north is Pen Yr Ole Wen.
Watch yourself here as you have to ford either a stream or a waterfall depending on the weather!
Look to the N side of the lake and you should see the path you took earlier. Follow it carefully NE then NW back to the visitor centre. Loos, cake, and a hot drink, whilst you wait for the bus back to Betws y Coed or Bethesda.