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Mynydds Mawr & Graig Goch

Mynydds Mawr & Graig Goch


Postby poppiesrara » Sun Feb 13, 2011 11:20 pm

Hewitts included on this walk: Mynydd Graig Goch, Mynydd Mawr

Date walked: 12/02/2011

Time taken: 3.5

Distance: 13 km

Ascent: 850m

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All the forecasts were for a pretty mixed day, so it looked like a good one to get back onto the hills with a short and easily-navigable climb. I rather like the name 'Mynydd Mawr' - if it was attached to what we English call Snowdon, it would be dull and unimaginative, but that Wales's 'Big Mountain' is a little sub-700m one is quirky, yet somehow perfectly appropriate for this wide and bulky hump.

our_route.gpx Open full screen  NB: Walkhighlands is not responsible for the accuracy of gpx files in users posts


The ascent from Rhyd-Ddu is an oddly mixed one - a gentle, straightforward and pretty featureless mile or two through the forest, a ferociously steep and breathtaking little hands-and-feet climb from the forest onto the Foel Rudd top, and then another easy stroll around the lovely curving ridge to the peak, with some 'lunatics-only' shattered crags over the south edge. There were intermittently lovely views on this day, interspersed with some pretty threatening mist and rainclouds:
1. Foel Rudd.jpg
Foel Rudd
2. Y Garn behind Clogwynygarreg.jpg
Y Garn behind Clogwynygarreg
7. Craig y Bera.jpg
Craig y Bera
9. Foel Gron behind Cwm Planwydd.jpg
Foel Gron behind Cwm Planwydd

10. Foel Rudd-Mynydd Mawr ridge with Foel Goch and Moel Cynghorion behind.jpg
Foel Rudd - Mynydd Mawr ridge with Foel Goch and Moel Cynghorion behind

12. Mynydd Mawr summit.jpg
Mynydd Mawr summit
14. Nantlle Ridge from Mynydd Mawr.jpg
Nantlle Ridge from Mynydd Mawr


Considering that a lot of North Wales had been under water during the previous week, the route up was in wonderful condition. This must be one of the best paths in Snowdonia, walked enough to be clear, close-cropped and easy to follow, yet not enough to suffer ugly or muddy erosion; sensitively rock-stepped in the steepest parts yet with none of the semi-urban resurfacing seen elsewhere.

As the dark clouds cloaked the summit, it looked like time for a harem-scarem (very steep) trot and tumble back down the same way:
17. Descent route from Mynydd Mawr between Llyn Cwellyn and Clogwynygarreg.jpg
Descent route from Mynydd Mawr between Llyn Cwellyn and Clogwynygarreg

but - with the muddy bruise of experience - I'd advise anyone else to take their time rather more!

Anyway, back in Rhyd-Ddu, the sun was back out already and it seemed far too early to finish the day - still time left then for a quick look at Wales's 'new mountain', the suddenly-'grown' Mynydd Graig Goch, at the other end of the Nantlle Ridge on the way home.

our_route.gpx Open full screen  NB: Walkhighlands is not responsible for the accuracy of gpx files in users posts


From the parking spot on the road by the TV mast, there is an obvious - if at times uninspiring - route up this mountain through the Garreg Llwyd farm (a 'Tir Gofal' right of way linking the road to the open country), marked by twin vehicle tracks most of the way up. Pretty damp on the lower slopes this day but hardly surprising given the recent weather and nothing too awkward. The path peters out over the last few hundred metres into some pretty wide boulder-fields, leaving you to clamber your own way through, and the summit (or summits? - there are two or three very similar-looking rocky peaks to scramble up) is very bleak and rocky compared with most this height. It's also - out in the open on the west side of Snowdonia - incredibly windy!
21. Mynydd Graig Goch.jpg
Mynydd Graig Goch
23. Mynydd Mawr from MGG slopes.jpg
Mynydd Mawr from Mynydd Graig Goch slopes
25. Mynydd Graig Goch summit area.jpg
Mynydd Graig Goch summit area

26. Garnedd-goch from MGG summit.jpg
Garnedd-goch from Mynydd Graig Goch summit


It's worth adding that the route to the top from this side is blocked by a high drystone wall, beautifully built but very tricky to cross. There are some steps built into it (just visible a few yards to the left of the corner in this photo, taken during descent), but even those - there are only a (widely-spaced) couple each side - are quite a hard and unsteady climb and one not everyone would enjoy.
28. Drystone wall South of MGG summit.jpg
Drystone wall south of Mynydd Graig Goch summit


A mountain chiefly for the 'bagger', maybe? The 'there-and-back' from Garnedd-goch to the north looked pretty steep, and certainly a lot of descent/re-ascent tagged onto the end of a Nantlle Ridge traverse. This route was a perfectly pleasant climb, but not perhaps one you'd repeat over and over again. Either way, it was only possible thanks to a fairly enlightened piece of governance and a co-operative farmer:
30. Tir Gofal notice looking back up ascent to MGG.jpg
Tir Gofal notice looking back up ascent to Mynydd Graig Goch
Last edited by poppiesrara on Sun Oct 28, 2012 10:53 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Mynydds Mawr & Graig Goch

Postby malky_c » Sun Feb 13, 2011 11:25 pm

Nice to see a report on Mynydd Mawr. This used to be a favourite evening walk of mine - the traverse along the top of the crags is great, along with the short grass. Cheers for the great memories :D

Only been up Mynydd Graig Goch the once though!
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Re: Mynydds Mawr & Graig Goch

Postby susanmyatt » Mon Feb 14, 2011 8:20 am

Great report and some nice photos, not done these, thanks :D
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Re: Mynydds Mawr & Graig Goch

Postby Red Peak » Mon Feb 14, 2011 9:51 am

That's what I like about this site - you get to see fantastic photos of peaks you've yet to climb. It gives you a real taste of what lies ahead. Cheers, poppiesrara ... :thumbup:
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Re: Mynydds Mawr & Graig Goch

Postby poppiesrara » Sat Feb 19, 2011 10:20 am

Thanks, everyone!
Mynydd Mawr was a lovely short walk; highly recommended if you haven't been there.
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