Snowdon via Crib Goch

Technical Difficulty

Hard

Distance

11.5km

Duration

5-8 Hours

Ascent

870m

Snowdon via Crib Goch

Jake // April 16, 2019

Summit the tallest mountain in Wales, via its best and most iconic route which is via Crib Goch ridge. Not for the faint hearted, this scramble is one of the best in Britain and is simply the best way to summit Snowdon. After summiting Crib Goch, Garnedd Ugain and finally Snowdon descend via any route you desire. This route should only be tackled in dry, calm conditions.

Where is it and how do I get there?

The route is in Snowdonia, North Wales. The route is circular so starts and ends at the same point. The starting point is at Pen y Pass car park. Parking costs £10 for the day and is often busy so get there early. Free parking can be found in some nearby laybys but again arrive early to avoid disappointment. 

How far is it and how much elevation gain?

The route is approximately 11km in length with over 800m in elevation. Much of the ascent is completed by scrambling so it’s important not to underestimate the difficulty of completely this distance over such terrain.

Route Description and Route Illustration

*For this route you will need a OL17 Explorer Snowdon map.

Leave from the carpark taking the path to the right (Pyg track) continue on until the path forks. Take the right path, there should be a warning sign. From this point on scramble up the route until you reach the ridge (marked in red). 

The hardest bit is yet to come. Follow the ridge to the west, this is Crib Goch. If you are not too keen on exposure drop down slightly on the southern side. After passing over two massive pinnacles, the ground will flatten out.

Continue on reaching the waystone of Garnedd Ugain before descending towards the way stone marking next to the train tracks. These tracks can be followed all the way to the summit of Snowdon.

For the descent, I would recommend the Pyg track. Descend Snowdon until you reach the waystone, turn east and descend. 

What kit do I need to bring?

Due to the technicalities of the route you want to be as light as possible but it’s important to be prepared in case of an accident or getting stuck. Check out my “How To Pack For A Mountain Day” article for more information.

What experience do I need to tackle this route?

This is a severe route and should not be underestimated. Previous scrambling experience is essential as is the ability to handle exposure. A good understanding of map reading is required as it is easy to stray off the ridge in poor conditions and quickly find yourself to be stuck.

I don’t feel like I have enough experience, what should I do?

Consider completing some easier scrambles first or go along with an experienced friend or group. Alternatively as part of Rickards Rambles I offer guiding services, if you would like to make an enquiry about booking an adventure please get in contact.

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