An interview with the guidebook author, and the walk leader for our journey along the route this September!
A new guidebook was published by Cicerone Press recently, to the Snowdonia Way, a walking trail through the mountains of North Wales. Large Outdoors are running a guided trip along it, led by the guidebook’s author and Large Outdoors Operations Director Alex. So what’s it all about?
So what is the Snowdonia Way?
It’s a long-distance trail, just like the Coast to Coast, West Highland Way, or any of the other great trails we have in the UK. It’s mainly low-level, with a few hill passes to go over, but no peaks, meaning it’s quite accessible. There are also alternative mountain stages on each day for those of us who like to get to the summits. Walking the low-level route takes between 6 to 8 days depending on whether you want to split up the two longest days. Large Outdoors are doing it over 7 days, a good length.
How did you come up with the route?
Snowdonia is quite a ‘long’ National Park, and lots of people who visit the northern area, including Snowdon, never see the south. So linking the whole length along one route seemed an obvious goal. Machynlleth in the south, and Conwy in the north both have great rail connections and are historic places to start and end the journey. The nitty gritty of the route then came about bit by bit over lots of visits.
How long did it take to write?
I came up with the idea two years ago, and then spent many weeks here and there investigating the best paths to use to link places. I wanted people to have adventures but to still keep the days manageable. Some of the paths aren’t frequently used, so working out which ones were still walkable was important. I probably spent 3-4 months working solidly on the route and writing the book.
What are the highlights?
There are too many to list! The main highlight is that on a walking trail, you get to see how a landscape fits together and how each mountain range succeeds the one before. If you want specific points, then how about: Cadair Idris, the forests of Dyfi and Coed y Brenin, passing Snowdon along the Nant Gwynant, walking through the Ogwen Valley, the 37m high Aber falls, the excellent pubs and cafes along the route, seeing the coast and Anglesey, passing Dolwyddelan and Conwy castles, hearing about myths and legends. The list goes on!
Is it technical?
No. The days are full days out walking, with hill passes on each day, but the route stays relatively low down, sticking to the valleys and woods rather than the peaks. There is no scrambling, or anything like that!
Our Upcoming events - Snowdonia
Easter in Snowdonia
Learn Navigation Weekend – Independent Mountain Walker
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