The Easiest Route up Snowdon

By The Bald Scrambler

Llanberis Path

Published By: Daniel Woodley. Updated: 18th October 2023. Filed at: Hiking Routes. Disclosure: I may earn a commission from purchases made via links. Disclaimer: Mountain hiking can be dangerous, this route description does not provide step-by-step instructions. Read Disclaimer.

Snowdon is the highest mountain in Wales, UK and is taller than any of the mountains in England. Standing at 1085 metres above sea level and within easy reach of the nearby town and road links, it’s no wonder so many people choose Snowdon as their mountaineering challenge.

I’ve been up every route to the summit and the easiest is the Llanberis Path, which is also the most popular.

A long but relatively shallow meandering route, the Llanberis Path starts in the main town, is 4.5 miles (7.2km) long and the average hiker takes around 3-4 hours to reach the summit.

This is my guide to the easiest route up Snowdon.

Planning a winter ascent? The Llanberis Path is notoriously dangerous when covered in ice, read my winter warning here.

I recently published a video guide to the Llanberis Path/Rangers Path circular route. If you would like to go up the easiest route but come down the second easiest path, this short 3-minute video is for you:

Parking and Facilities For The Easiest Route Up Snowdon

The town of Llanberis has several car parks, which will fill quickly during busy periods.

I usually park in the main car park opposite the Snowdon Railway.

Here’s a map: Car Park on Google Maps.

What3Words location: Map on What3Words.

Car park postcode: LL55 4TU (brings you to within 100m of the car park on Google Maps).

Cost: £11 all day or £6 from 3 pm (correct 2023).

Toilets and shops can be found in the town.

The 3 Sections of the Easiest Route Up Snowdon

Here are the three sections of the Llanberis Path:

  1. From Llanberis town to the Halfway House.
  2. From Halfway House to Clogwyn Station crossing.
  3. From the railway crossing to the summit.

Section 1) FROM LLANBERIS TOWN

The first section of the route is made from tarmac, is fairly wide and accommodates vehicles. It’s also surprisingly steep, and whenever I’ve been on this route, I’m always reminded that the initial bit is steeper than the start of any of the other main routes up Snowdon.

Don’t feel overwhelmed if you’re legs hurt and you get exhausted quickly – the path does level off after a short distance; it isn’t this steep all the way to the summit.

The path soon narrows to around 3-abreast and becomes more rugged, it’s easy to walk on, but there’s no way one could push a child’s buggy here, it’s too uneven.

The route meanders up the hill, roughly parallel to the railway tracks, as you can see in my drone photos here:

Llanberis Path aerial photo

Looking down the mountain to Llanberis. The path is on the right, the railway on the left.

Llanberis Path aerial photo

Looking up the mountain. The railway and path crisscross each other at the bridge.

Section 2) Halfway House to Clogwyn Station

The halfway house offers refreshments if it’s open (rarely out of season) but there aren’t any public toilet facilities here.

The next notable point is Clogwyn Station and you’ll need to walk under another bridge as the path and railway crisscross again.

The terrain on this second section starts to get a little steeper towards the third and final section.

Section 3) From the Station to the Summit

This section starts at the bridge by Clogwyn Station and is arguably the hardest part of the route.

The ground here is steeper, often dusty and with lots of loose stones. Extra care is required but this is still a walking route, you won’t need to use your hands to pull yourself up.

Map of the steep section

Map showing the steep section after Clogwyn Station (in red).

After this steeper section, the path evens off somewhat until it’s joined by the Ranger Path, The Crib Goch route and the Pyg Track.

The final push to the summit is hard work and tiring but the views down the Pyg Track make it all worth it:

Views down the Pyg Track and Miners Track

Views down the Pyg Track and Miners Track.

Snowdon's summit

The summit.

The Summit

At the summit, there’s a cafe and toilets although they’re usually closed out of season and whenever the train isn’t running, such as on a windy day.

Descent Options

From the summit, you have plenty of options, the most popular being:

  1. The way you came, back down the easy Llanberis Path.
  2. The nearby Snowdon Ranger Path is of similar difficulty (just a little more rugged but not by much) and you can walk on the connecting path that takes you back into the town of Llanberis.
  3. Down the more rugged Pyg or Miners Tracks and get the bus back to Llanberis.

Whichever route you choose, make sure you don’t get lost at the fork, (easily done in low cloud):

Descending the Path

The easily missed fork on the descent: 1) Ranger Path. 2) Llanberis Path. 3) Crib Goch Route. 4) Pyg/Miners Track.

My Recommendation

If you enjoyed the easiest route up Snowdon and didn’t find it too rugged, I suggest going down the Snowdon Ranger Path and taking the connecting path back into the town of Llanberis. The path is made from gravel and was recently upgraded by the park authority, it’s well marked about two-thirds of the way down the Ranger Path:

Connecting path

This path loops back to the town of Llanberis.

My Winter Warning

On the Llanberis Path, one section just after Clogwyn Station is notoriously dangerous when covered in ice. The entire section transforms into a steep ski slope and should only be attempted by those with crampons and an ice axe (and knowledge of how to use them safely).

In winter the Llanberis Path isn’t always the easiest or safest route to the summit and there are warnings on the notice boards at the start of the route.

The Llanberis Path Isn’t Boring

I am a member of several Snowdonia Facebook groups, and occasionally I see people claiming that the Llanberis Path is boring.

I disagree – the route isn’t boring but it is longer and shallower than the other routes and while the views are stunning near the top, they aren’t as great as on some of the other paths on the way up.

This is why I suggest first-timers consider going up the easiest route and down the Snowdon Ranger Path and get the looping path to the town. Taking in two paths on one day is a great way to explore another side of the mountain that offers different views.

Route Profile and Information

Grade: The Llanberis Path is graded as a “hard mountain walk” but is the easiest route up to the summit of Snowdon, apart from the railway.

Suitability for Beginners: The route is long, and meandering and most people find it a hard walk, but it is a walk and there’s no scrambling or climbing involved.

Navigation: The path is easy to follow but care should be taken on the descent as the path forks into several different directions just off the summit.

Dangers: Extra care is required near the top due to steep drops just off the path. Wind can be problematic at altitude on bad weather days. Heat exhaustion and dehydration are possible in the summer. This route can be treacherous in icy conditions.

Length: 4.5 miles (7.2km) each way.

Time (car to car): 5-8 hours.

Popularity: This is the busiest of the main routes up to Snowdon.

My Dislikes: This is a very touristy route and overly popular in the summer. The views are not as great as on the other routes.

Similar Routes up Snowdon: The nearby Snowdon Ranger Path is similar, perhaps slightly easier. The Rhyd Ddu Path is more difficult but quieter.

Other Nearby Routes: Rhyd Ddu train station is near the start of the less popular but delightfully enjoyable Nantlle Ridge hike.

More:

I hope you find my guide to the easiest route up Snowdon helpful, I urge you to watch my video (top of the page) to see what the path is like.

I would describe this route as perfect for first-timers, but it can get busy during the summer and bank holidays.

On this website, I publish scrambling guides, photos and videos and occasionally hiking routes I particularly enjoy, such as the Llanberis Path.

Recommended Guide Book:

Scrambles in Snowdonia

Scrambles in Snowdonia by Steve Ashton (#ad)

About Daniel Woodley

The photos, video and route description on this page were created by Daniel Woodley, aka The Bald Scrambler, and this page forms part of my Hiking and Walking Guides.

From walking along beaches and kayaking down rivers to making his way up mountains and even jumping out of planes, Daniel has a love of the outdoors but scrambling is his real passion.

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Daniel Woodley

Daniel Woodley aka The Bald Scrambler

Have fun, keep safe. Hopefully I’ll see you on the mountains one day

By The Bald Scrambler