Everyone’s heard about the beauty of Snowdon and the amazing views you can experience from the summit.
It’s not often you think the challenge of reaching the summit is something you want to do on your weekend off but even the un-experienced and beginners can climb Snowdon with a little bit of preparation which we'll guide you through in our beginners guide to climbing Snowdon.
Snowdon is the tallest mountain in England & Wales at a height of 3,560ft making it a renowned tourist attraction to Brits and world travellers alike. It’s also part of the three peaks challenge in which challengers tackle the three tallest peaks in England, Scotland & Wales in only 24 hours. For most adventurers reaching the top of just one in 24 hours is enough of an achievement on its own.
However, Mount Snowdon is the Chessington of mountains as it does have routes for all abilities. Families, walkers and holiday makers will find it achievable no matter their level of experience or fitness. With just a bit of stamina you can see the breath-taking view of Snowdonia National Park from the summit and place your own rock on the top pile while checking in on the tallest mountain in Wales.
To reach the summit you need a little bit of preparation, the right clothing and to know which route to take. We’ll tackle these topics point by point so you’re all clued up on how to make climbing a mountain a fun and memorable day. The first subject we’ll cover which is the most important and can seem quite obvious but surpassingly forgotten about is when to go. Snowdon doesn’t have the word snow in it out of coincidence.
If you decide to tackle this mountain in the winter you will be trudging through snow, the final sections of the tracks no matter which way you go are all very well known for it and you will most likely be setting foot in deep white piles as soon as you get out of the car. On a slightly chillier day the highlands across the National Park can be a dreamy white paradise, when in nearby major towns there isn’t a sight of it.
We highly recommend if this is the first time you have done a long hike and aren’t familiar with mountain terrain that you go in the summer months or late spring, early autumn to guarantee a clear path. If you have some previous experience then going during spring and autumn is perfectly achievable but only the brave and those with good cold weather and waterproof gear should be heading off in winter. You will find during the summer the routes do become a bit of a highway but this is re-assuring for anyone walking up them the first time as you’ll have plenty of company on the way and help will be easily at hand if you need it.
Now you’ve decided what time of year you want to go you need to have a little think about what you want to wear. If you’re going in the winter you’ll want to be thoroughly layered and protected but if you’re going during the summer season you can drop most of the extra layers in favour of a comfortable set of hiking trousers and a fleece and overcoat for when it get’s more chilly higher up.
Shoe wise a set of trainers is perfectly fine but we’d recommend a comfortable set of walking boots if you have them as they provide support for your ankles on unsteady ground and some protection from the elements. You will want to pack away a set of warm gloves and a hat plus an waterproof overcoat incase it does decide to bucket it down. In your bag a nice a supply of snacks and energy bars is usually a good choice plus a packed lunch, don’t take too much though as you’ll have to carry it the whole way and there aren’t any toilets except the natural ones on the way.
With the bag packed and clothes on all you need is a route to get you there, Snowdon can be climbed from so many different angles you’re actually spoilt for choice but it’s more to do with how steep you want your climb to be and how comfortable you are with tackling a few basic technical challenges on the way. Don’t worry by technical I don’t mean you have to get ropes out and abseil across, purely a few moments where either the path becomes a bit wet and slippy or you have to get up some rather large steps or in this case rocks.
We recommend if this is your first time doing it to choose a path you will feel comfortable going up and also down again. The tracks all start from different bases around Snowdon so unless you plan on hiking a few more hours to get your car at the end you’ll need to return the same way you went up. Talking of cars, in the busier months getting a space can be a challenge in itself so arrive early to guarantee one and also keep reading as we explain what car parking is available at each route.
If you want to see the weather and conditions on Snowdon before departing you can always check on the Snowdon Live Webcam