The Llanberis Path – Llwybr Llanberis
By Dave Roberts
Published – February 18, 2023
The Llanberis Path – Llwybr Llanberis
The Llanberis Path is the busiest and least interesting route to the summit of Snowdon. Makes for a good descent route though!
Updated for 2023
Start and Finish: Llanberis - Snowdon Summit
Distance: 7.2 km
Ascent: 950 m
Time: 4 hours
Timings are approximate and depend on the individual. Calculate the time using Naismith’s Rule and factor in your own pace.
Before You Walk up Snowdon, ask yourself – Are you equipped? Do you know what you’re doing? Are the conditions safe? If you answer no to any of these, stay safe, don’t go! Check the weather forecast and make sure you know about walking up Snowdon in the Snow. If you lack experience – hire a Snowdon Mountain Guide.
Most local facilities available in Llanberis with numerous pubs, cafes, teashops and convenience stores.
There are buses to Llanberis from Caernarfon and Bangor.
See our page on Walking up Yr Wyddfa (Snowdon) using Public Transport
Plenty of parking options in Llanberis village, with the nearest the large car park in front of the Royal Victoria Hotel. Avoid parking along Victoria Terrace – as the locals have a hard time of it as it is.
Avoiding other walkers. In winter, the path has a dangerous section known as the Killer Convex – see the route description for details – but reinforces the fact that this may be a straightforward route in summer, it is serious in winter (as are all the routes!)
Remember that we cannot outline every single hazard on a walk – it’s up to you to be safe and competent. Read up on Walk up Yr Wyddfa / Snowdon Safely Navigation and the Gear and Equipment you’ll need.
Check the Weather before setting out.
The Llanberis Path – Llwybr Llanberis Ordnance Survey Map and GPX File Download
Download file for GPS
The Llanberis Path – Llwybr Llanberis
The Llanberis Path up Snowdon has to be the most popular and easiest hiking route to the summit of Wales’ highest mountain. In normal weather, it poses no problems for the fit walker, with even the navigation being reasonably easy. On a fine day, you’ll be able to follow the hordes of other people who have also decided to follow the Llanberis Path – aka the Motorway. That said, it should not be taken lightly as it is the longest and most laborious route to the summit and requires a good level of fitness and preparation.
The Llanberis Path is a steady plod once you pass the initial pull up the minor road, and you’ll have time to enjoy the route until about 2/3 rds of the way. Then you’ll hit the real climb of Allt Moses and that’s a real pull up, but once above this and you reach the junction with the PYG and Ranger paths, it steadies to climb more gradually and you’ll soon be at the summit!
Be warned that if you’re walking up Snowdon in winter conditions, the section between the top of Allt Moses and the junction with the PYG / Ranger is known as the Killer Convex for good reason! In snow, the path vanishes and you end up having to contour across a very steep slope. Even fully equipped for winter, this can be hairy!
The Llanberis Path – Llwybr Llanberis Full Route Description
1 – The Llanberis Path starts wherever you want in Llanberis, but if you can find your way to the Mountain Railway station near the Royal Victoria Hotel then it’s as good a starting point as any. The Sherpa buses stop here and there are signs advertising parking in the hotel car park. Head towards the hotel, keeping on the right hand side of the road and turn right up Victoria Terrace when you reach the mini roundabout.
Ahead, pass the terrace of houses and aim for the minor road heading over the cattle grid and uphill. This initial climb is arguably one of the steepest parts of the whole trip! It soon relents, and there’s a café bar – Penceunant Isaf Tea Rooms (more info here, and come highly recommended) at the top of the hill, though it’s probably too soon for that yet. Keep on the minor road, which twists and turns, through a gate and past some modern barns. Very soon after, there’s a footpath marker stone to your left that states Snowdon Summit (after around 1.5Km).
2—The Llanberis Path wends its way steadily uphill, and there’s really very little in the way of navigation involved. The path is very clear and you shouldn’t lose it! There’s a bit of a pull on this next section, but bear with it as you’ll soon get a good view of the summit ahead as you reach the gate.
3 From the gate, the path levels out as it crosses a flattish area of moorland for around 1km.
4— You soon pass under the railway, and you’re now just over the 3km mark, and about 450m up. I won’t lie to you, but you’re not quite half way yet! Then keep going as you’ll soon be passing the Half Way House.
5— The Half Way House. Ok, so now you’re as good as half way up. Technically, this little café is half way up from sea level, but as you’re well over half way distance wise (4 k out of 7.5k), you’re as good as half way up and deserve that cuppa! Keep going on the wide and gently angled path for another Km and if it’s clear you’ll start to appreciate the views ahead and right of Clogwyn Du’r Arddu – also known as Cloggy among climbers. Keep it steady, as the next section requires much more effort!
6—Start of ‘Allt Moses (5km) Now you’ve got a hard Kilometer ahead and over 250m of climbing! Allt Moses starts off as giant steps, but deteriorates further up into a rougher path. It is in the process of being surfaced, so in time this whole section will be improved. It’s still a nasty pull up, and Clogwyn Station most of the way up provides a brief respite in the form of a path under the railway and beyond this you finally start being rewarded with the views. It’s clear now that you’ve climbed a fair way and the Pass of Llanberis looks far below. The mountain directly opposite is Glyder Fawr. You can actually get a train to Clogwyn and follow the remaining route from here.
7— The Killer Convex. The path continues to pull up steeply, but steeply nevertheless for a distance before finally relenting and levelling out. The path here is wide and easy, but if you take a look at the slope on either side you realise how steep the slope would otherwise be. This is the black spot in winter known as the Killer Convex that lives up to its name in the winter.
8 —Bwlch Glas Standing Stone. This is the home stretch! There’s now under 100m of climbing and only half a Kilometer of walking to the summit! You won’t rush as the view down past the PYG track and Crib Goch has now opened up on one side, and towards Rhyd Ddu on the other. If you’re lucky, the views only get better from now on! It does get busier here as you join the Snowdon Ranger, PYG and Miner’s Track towards the summit.
9—To Snowdon Summit. From the Bwlch Glas Standing stone, the path continues along the wide ridge shared by the railway. It is a little eroded in places due to the sheer number of feet that walk this section every year. The summit building, Hafod Eryri, soon comes into view and you know it’s not long now! The path turns to wide, smooth steps as you reach the building and the summit is just a few dozen steps away.
Descending the Llanberis Path
From the summit, facing Hafod Eryri you’ll need to head right down the steps and follow the track to the standing stone at Bwlch Glas. At this point ,the path branches off in numerous directions. Left is the Snowdon Ranger path, ahead the Llanberis Path, slightly right towards Crib Goch and right for the PYG and Miners’ Tracks. Heading directly ahead, the Llanberis Path keeps steady before descending steeply towards Clogwyn Station where it passes beneath the railway. A steep section down Allt Moses is the toughest section, before it relents and should be easy enough to follow down to Llanberis.
Live Yr Wyddfa / Snowdon Conditions
Recommended Walking Guides: A Pocket Guide to Snowdon: A Guide to the Routes of Ascent, The Ascent of Snowdon: The Six Classic Routes Up Snowdon, Snowdon – The Story of a Welsh Mountain: Biography of a Mountain
Walking Books – Snowdonia Ridges of Snowdonia: The Best Ridge Walking, Mountain Walks: The Finest Mountain Walks in Snowdonia, Great Mountain Days in Snowdonia , Day Walks in Snowdonia, Mountain Walking in Snowdonia
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