One day hiking up the Llanberis path to Mt Snowdon, Wales Review
Our one aim in Wales was to hike up Mt Snowdon; I don’t know why we thought that was a good idea, but we did it.
Having never completed a proper hike before I made sure to order some hiking shoes before I went and they were essential to my journey; despite being a popular tourist attraction with a train that goes right to the summit, Mt Snowdon is still a mountain and should be treated like one.
Other recommendations include bringing layers of warm clothing since the summit is very cold and be very careful with the amount of liquids you bring as toilets are only available at the summit and hikes can take up to four hours one way.
We took the Llanderis Path up the mountain which is seen as the least picturesque but easiest path. However this is like saying you are eating the worst layer of a cake; it’s still delicious at the end of the day.
Parking for the beginning of the hike was very easy with plentiful paid spots available, but note that the other routes up the mountain have limited parking that go quickly.
Despite being the easiest path Llanderis still has its quirks with distinct rocky areas requiring some light scrambling and muddy paths. We went on a sunny day because Mt Snowdon can be very dangerous in the mountain with a section named the Killer Convex since so many accidents happen when this section ices over.
The route to reach the beginning of the Llanderis path was all flat cement for 20 minutes but at a very steep angle. I actually found this bit more difficult than many sections of the actual climb.
Starting the route officially was a very gentle climb with plenty of grass and sunshine.
There were plenty of children and cute dogs doing the climb as well.
Lots of sheep were dotted around the mountain and there was a hilarious moment where a dog fell over whilst trying to intimidate a sheep. The fool didn’t know who rules Mt Snowdon.
At some point I had to tuck my camera away to concentrate on the climb, but despite this several people overtook us including lots of fit older people.
Things started to get a lot more rocky as we progressed but the views were beautiful, including that of the summit train passing us.
There was a halfway house where we had a short break.
Unfortunately it was closed for hot meals due to Covid. Wales wasn’t in lockdown at the time, but I was still surprised at the number of people attempting the climb. The 1 metre plus spacing requirements were somewhat followed at the beginning of the climb, but this was thrown out of the window as soon as we got to the trickiest slopes right after the halfway house and at the three hour portion of our hike.
This was understandable; I was more concerned with not breaking my neck and definitely dying than catching Covid and possibly dying.
But the views of the lakes and valleys were getting more impressive as we climbed.
Then at one point it added mud to the mix just to make it interesting. I most felt like giving up at this point.
When we finally reached the summit there was a long snaking queue to take a photo at the peak and we had to wait 45 minutes to take ours. This area was definitely not Covid compliant and I’m not surprised that Wales promptly went into a full lockdown around a week after our visit.
The station at the top was closed along with the toilets and cafe, so we just admired the view whilst shivering in the cold.
The surrounding nature was mesmerising and made my burning legs worth it.
Our walk back was much simpler as we followed the rail tracks. Since the station was closed we figured that the trains were no longer working. We stopped at the halfway house to eat our packed lunch since it was far too freezing at the summit to do so.
Climbing up the mountain was a matter of stamina and willpower, however going down was more about careful concentration and a healthy dose of courage at steep points.
I’m really glad I managed to climb Mt Snowdon as it offers such beautiful views and finishing the climb is a great achievement for someone who doesn’t hike often. However I can’t recommend going when Covid is still around; I thought that the pandemic would thin out the crowds to a managable number but this wasn’t the case as we could see at the summit when all the routes converge.
Opening hours: Trains run every 30 minutes from 09:00, subject to passenger demand
Traditional Diesel Service 2021 Return Tickets from Llanberis
3-15 year olds: £22.00
Disabled adult: £29.00
Disabled child: £19.00
Heritage Steam Experience 2021 Return Tickets from Llanberis
3-15 year olds: £32.00
Disabled adult: £39.00
Disabled child: £29.00
Note: Advanced bookings are subject to a £3.50 administration charge per booking, Single tickets down the mountain cannot be pre-booked and tickets are non-transferable and non-refundable