Llyn y Gader and the foothills of Snowdon Walk
If you love being in the mountains but don’t fancy a strenuous hike, this circular walk in the foothills of Snowdon with its stunning views is the one for you.
This circular walk in part follows the Lôn Gwyfai from Rhyd Ddu around the lake, Llyn y Gader before heading into the foothills of Snowdon to join the Rhyd Ddu path back down to the village of Rhyd Ddu.
It is an excellent surfaced track, suitable for the family with just one steep section up to the Rhyd Ddu path. The views of Snowdon, Yr Aran and Nantlle Ridge are just stunning.
Distance: 3¾ miles – 6 km
Time: 2 hours
Difficulty: Moderate family walk (one steep section)
Parking: National Park Car Park
Postcode for Sat Nav: LL54 6TN
Grid Ref: SH 571 525
Ordnance Survey Map: OS Explorer OL17: Snowdon / Yr Wyddfa
This circular walk starts from the National Park car park at Rhyd Ddu by the railway station and follows the Lôn Gwyfai before heading into the foothills of Snowdon. Rhyd Ddu is a small village between Waunfawr and Beddgelert on the A4085. The station car park is on the left as you head out of the village towards Beddgelert.
1. From the car park, cross the road to the clearly sign posted Lôn Gwyrfai path. The Lôn Gwyrfai is surfaced and easy to follow with some excellent views all round.
2. The Lôn Gwryfai will take you around the lake, Llyn y Gader, crossing a causeway, before arriving at an old quarry at the far end. Continue LEFT following the Lôn Gwyrfai lakeside, and then on into the forest.
3. The path remains easy to follow through the forest. At a junction with another forestry track that’s signposted to Beddgelert bear LEFT, and follow the track crossing the Welsh Highland Railway to the main road. Take care when you cross the railway track.
4. Cross the road and go through the gate on your LEFT. Follow the surfaced track through the fields up to Ffridd Uchaf farm. Here there are fantastic views of Yr Aran and Snowdon.
5. Follow the path around the back of Ffridd Uchaf farm past a stand of trees.
6. On the far side of the farm, cross the farm track and follow the surfaced track up onto open hillside. This section is also the only significant bit of climbing on the walk.
7. At the top, there’s a big stone waymarker marked Rhyd Ddu path. Turn LEFT and follow the Rhyd ddu path down to the village, Rhyd Ddu.
8. The final descent on the Rhyd Ddu path is straightforward, with excellent views towards the Nantlle Ridge, Mynydd Mawr, and Llyn Cwellyn. The path joins a farm track, where you turn LEFT to cross the Welsh Highland Railway to arrive back at the car park – you’ve finished your walk so put the kettle on and enjoy a well-deserved brew!
Please note. These directions are for guidance only, we can accept no responsibility for any loss, damage or injury resulting from the use of this information. Always take a map with you and be prepared for the weather to turn. Do not venture out in bad weather and always take care with coastal tides.