Bwlch Drws Ardudwy
The longer of two walks in the area, this circular route (a moderate graded walk) will lead you towards Bwlch Drws Ardudwy, which is the gap between Rhinog Fawr and Rhinog Fach. This walk gives you the opportunity to experience the rugged Rhinogydd National Nature Reserve, before leading you back to the Graigddu woodland. Many say that the Rhinogydd is one of the last true wilderness in Wales, and once you’re there it’s easy to see why.
A word of warning - since this is a National Nature Reserve which is famous for its wildlife and wilderness, there are no markers on the path, and the path can get very wet. You will need to carry a map and wear strong, waterproof shoes if you’re going to follow this route.
How to get there
Traveling south down the A470 turn right, 1/2 mile (1 km) after the Bronaber turning.
Traveling north up the A470 turn left, 2 mile (3 km) after the sign post on the right to the Coed y Brenin center.
Follow the narrow road for just over 2 miles (3.5km) through two gates and park your vehicle in the designated parking area. Remember to keep the gates shut at all times.
Distance: 4 miles - 7 km (circular walk)
Time: Around 2 hours
Grade: Moderate Walk
Terrain: Mountain heathland & some rough, wet terrain. Wear appropriate footwear
Start/Finish: Coed Graigddu car park
Parking: Free designated parking area
Post Code: LL45 2PL
Relevant Map: OS Ordnans Exp O18 (Harlech, Porthmadog and Bala)
**Please be aware that a small section of the path has been partly washed away during adverse weather. Although passable, please take care on this section. Restoration work will take place in due course.
1. Start your journey by bearing right, following the sign out of the car park along a gravel road.
2. At around 200m, bear left at the first junction on the gravel road.
3. Mind the animals as you walk past Graigddu Isaf on your right. Keep left of the farmhouse and cross the bridge straight ahead.
4. Soon you will see a signpost to your right for Bwlch Tyddiad, carry on following the Bwlch Drws Ardudwy path.
5. After a further 200m, follow the path to the right, passing round the gated entrance.
6. After a short distance, continue straight ahead passing the turning on your right.
7. Continue along the track for around 1km.
8. At the next junction take the track to the left, following the sign for Bwlch Drws Ardudwy.
9. After 200m turn right following the sign for Bwlch Drws Ardudwy.
10. Continue up the path for around 350m.
11. Pass through the gate in to the Rhinogydd National Nature Reserve (NNR). The terrain gets more rugged and at times can be wet under foot.
12. After around 600m, turn sharp right 50m or so before a stone wall.
13. Continue up towards a saddle in the ridge.
14. At the top of the hill, follow the path down and after around 750m climb over the fence using the steps provided.
15. Follow the path along the edge of the plantation until you reach a stile, cross over the style and follow the path to your left.
16. Continue following the path through the plantation for 500m until you come to a junction. Turn left following a wider track.
17. Soon you will approach a junction. take the right turn and follow the path down following a river.
18. After 500m you will pass a small water fall on your left (Pistyll Gwyn). After a further 500m you will reach a T-junction, turn left and follow the path back to the car park re-tracing your steps.