|Rhobell Fawr from
|Estimated net time||2-2½ hours|
|Difficulty||No technical difficulties except for easy scrambling across the stone fence a little below the summit.|
|Drinking water||No stable access to running water.|
|GSM coverage||Coverage throughout the route, except through the forest (December 2013).|
|Parking||Room for several cars at trail head.|
|Start height||310 metres|
|Vertical metres||455 metres for the roundtrip.|
|Trip distance||6.8 km|
From the junction where roads A470 and A494 intersect, just east of Dolgellau, drive 7.8 km (4.8 mi) north-east on A494, in the direction of Bala. Turn left onto a small road where signed for "Aran Hall School" and drive 0.9 km (0.55 mi) to a junction. Turn right and drive 1.2 km (0.75 mi) to the top of the road before a gate (next to an old stone building). Park on the other side of the gate, and make sure you close the gate behind you.
Start your walk by forking right in the road split and follow this road north and west 800 metres to the forest. Continue 750 metres through the forest and turn left in the forest road junction. Walk another 200 metres and fork right onto a smaller road. Walk this road 160 metres to its end, turn a little right, and pass through the gate. From the gate continue 100 metres in the same direction, and turn left when you hit a mountain road. Follow this mountain road 250 metres and head uphill to the right where the terrain looks OK for walking. There is no path up here, and there are several sections with nasty boulder, but if you head up the first hill you will find easy terrain by heading more or less directly north. You will have to scramble across a stone fence a little below the summit, and then easy walking to the summit cairn.
Descend by reversing your ascent route.
08. December 2013
I had already hiked Y Garn earlier this Sunday, and the last hike on the agenda this week-end was the potentially challenging Rhobell Fawr. The first challenge was to find somewhere to park, and after having driven back and forth a few times I managed to stop a car coming downhill. It turned out it was the owner of the land above the gate at the top of the road, and he was happy to let me park just behind the gate. Challenge #1 sorted, but I was still concerned about the route I had planned since the map indicated a lot of steep boulder and cliff bands. And I also had some concerns about my planned forest road route through the forest.
But to get through the forest was straight forward on a fine forest road, and I also found a good mountain road to get me to the foot of the steeper hill sides. Unfortunately I couldn't see any of the terrain above me because of the dense mist, so I only had my GPS way-points to rely on. This worked out well, and I found a route avoiding slippery boulder and potentially difficult cliff bands, and let out a small "Yes!" when I saw the summit cairn a few tens of metres ahead of me.
Despite the miserable conditions, with mist and strong wind, this hike was very enjoyable, and I was very please when I drove back down towards the main road. And even more happy when I got a text message saying the boys-14 handball team I'm coaching had won their game against Langevåg.