I was down in Wales and just had to do a big walk on a great day. My friend Rhys recommended giving Snowdon a miss as it would be very busy at this time of year so suggested a wee bit further and try the Glyders. I looked at the guides he had and there was a circuit taking in Tryfan, the Glyders Fach and Fawr, and Y Garn as well, the Four Tops, music to my ears. I had checked up on Tryfan on WH and it certainly looked challenging by my normal standards. Rhys' giudebooks didn't seem to think it was a big problem though, so the Glyders it would be.
Drove up to Capel Curig and on to Llyn Ogwen. Parked at the first layby there. Stopped right at the gate to the start of a path up Tryfan. It shows a person walking on the sign this is Tryfan, walk?, well till the end of the steps, a 100m or so, then the scrambling began. There were a couple of people in front of me, they couldn't get parked at Pen-y-Pass on Snowdon so came here. Good decision to come here then. It was fairly easy to follow the very rough path till enough height was gained to get to the real clambering.
Llyn Ogwen from Tryfan ascent by Joe Kincaid, on Flickr
A good bit of the ascent of Tryfan, there is green stuff by Joe Kincaid, on Flickr
I could hear other voices on the way up and glimpsed several other people only to lose them again. I didn't take many photos on the way up. I was too busy holding on Did I mention boulders, well there are plenty here. Going straight up meant gaining height pretty fast. Just had to watch where I was going. The north peak meant heading back down and back up to the actual summit and it got a bit tougher here. Wasn't too comfortable on some of it.
The north top of Tryfan by Joe Kincaid, on Flickr
Looking back down from Top of Tryfan by Joe Kincaid, on Flickr
Was really glad to get ot the summit. No one in sight except Adam and Eve. I have to admit, I would have embarassed myself had anybody been watching my climbing one of them. Tried both, got short fat hairy legs, I got on one, but not very dignified I have to say.
Adam and Eve Tryfan by Joe Kincaid, on Flickr
The Glyders and Y Garn from Tryfan by Joe Kincaid, on Flickr
Spectacular stuff, what a view though. Felt better after a look around and walked over to the south top. Could now see a route down at least from here, some sort of worn path over the rocks and scree. So after a drink, headed down, taking my time. It had only taken me an hour to get to top of Tryfan. After a bit of a scramble got o the bealach or bwlch as they say here. Did I mention boulders and scree Still no one in sight!!!
Bwich Tryfan looking back to Tryfan by Joe Kincaid, on Flickr
Bwich Tryfan looking up to Glyder Fach by Joe Kincaid, on Flickr
After climbing over the style at the large dyke, Glyder Fawr was looming over me. I could see the path up further down the miners path, well a scree chute anyway, same thing. I didn't want to lose height so I walked up beside the dyke and headed over to the scree as high up as possible. A path soon appeared before this, so maybe I was on the official path anyway, just couldn't see it for all the boulders. I worked my way up and kept a little too far to the right and hit the ridge too early. Got an early view back over Tryfan though.
Tryfan from front of Glyder Fach by Joe Kincaid, on Flickr
I had to drop back and go over to get back on track, but got there in the end. Reached the top of the shoulder and could see the actual top. Guess what, boulders, bigger than ever There was a small crown of boulders at this end so after a look worked my way over to the actual top.
Glyder Fach top with Snowdon beyond by Joe Kincaid, on Flickr
The highest part, is a huge boulder lying across a pile of others. I sat on it like I would a horse Getting off was harder than getting on.
Tryfan and Carneddau by Joe Kincaid, on Flickr
Eventually worked my way down and over to Castell y Gwynt. Quit a sight.
Castell y Gwynt with Glyder Fawr and Snowdon by Joe Kincaid, on Flickr
The walk over to Glyder Fawr was a lot easier, the boulders betting smaller with every step.
Looking back to Castell y Gwynt and Clyder Fach by Joe Kincaid, on Flickr
Looking down Cwm Cneifion by Joe Kincaid, on Flickr
Glyder Fawr top and Snowdon by Joe Kincaid, on Flickr
Glyder Fawr is something of a let down after the last two. The only compensation ifs the great view of Snowdon. Had my lunch here among the rocky outcrops that pass for the summit. I could see people walking the Crib Goch on Snowdon. Refreshed headed over to the drop down to Llyn y Cwn and the path to Y Garn.
Route to Y Garn by Joe Kincaid, on Flickr
Needless to say, boulders at the top and plenty of scree on the way down. The path is pretty cut up but carefully got down without slipping. Had a drink at the Llyn. It is hot play today.
Llyn y Cwn back up to Glyder Fawr by Joe Kincaid, on Flickr
The path up Y Garn is an amble compared to the first two. A gate to go through too. It gives a great view back over what has already been walked and down into Cwm Idwal. So glad I included this one.
Foel Goch and Conwy Bay from top of Y Garn by Joe Kincaid, on Flickr
The Four Tops, Tryfan, Glder Fach, Fawr and Y Garn by Joe Kincaid, on Flickr
The route back down to Pen y Benglog looked good on the map and was clearly visible from Tryfan. It is still a big drop to go down.
The ridge view down Y Garn by Joe Kincaid, on Flickr
Cwm Idwal by Joe Kincaid, on Flickr
The worn path on the ridge became a rock staircase to go down the steepest part of the drop back to Llyn Idwal. It was heavy going on the knees after a while, but straightforward walking.
Llyn Idwal by Joe Kincaid, on Flickr
I was so glad to get off the staircase and the steep drop. The rest of the walk back to Pen y Benglog is on paths made of laid stones. Glad to get off these too. Went to the cafe and had an ice cream as reward for getting down
Now just the walk along the road back to the car.
Tryfan from the road by Joe Kincaid, on Flickr
Llyn Ogwen from the road by Joe Kincaid, on Flickr
A bit weary when I got back to the car but absolutely delighted to have completed this amazing walk.
Travel and Coronavirus
Please check current coronavirus restrictions before travelling within or to Scotland.
Click for details
This board helps you to share your walking route experiences in England and Wales... or overseas.
Warning Please note that hillwalking when there is snow lying requires an ice-axe, crampons and the knowledge, experience and skill to use them correctly. Summer routes may not be viable or appropriate in winter. See winter information on our skills and safety pages for more information.