One of my absolute favorite hikes in Snowdonia, and anywhere in the world, if you’ve yet to do Moel Siabod, add it to the list!
Sitting just below the 3000ft mark (2860ft), it’s often overlooked in Snowdonia. Giving way to 15 taller peaks. This means one thing for sure, you’re less likely to encounter people on this hike than if you were to tackle anything inside the Snowdon Horseshoe.
I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again. Moel Siabod offers some of the absolutely best views of Snowdonia anywhere in Wales. Sitting south of the infamous horseshoe. It offers a panoramic view of the entire 15 peaks but also for miles around.
Quick Facts about Moel Siabod, Snowdonia.
- Distance: 10KM with ~800m of elevation gain.
- Summit Elevation: 872m
- Time: 3-5 hours
- Best travel time: Early morning for sunrise, or a sunset over Snowdon itself
- Difficulty: Ensure you’ve got the right kit for this grade 1 scramble
- Parking: Bry-Y-Glo Cafe, Capel Curig, Betws-y-Coed LL24 0DT
High Points of the Moel Siabod, Snowdonia.
- Amazing scrable over the Daear Ddu ridge.
- Beautiful walk in to the base of the ridge.
- Incredible 360 degree summit views.
- Typically quieter than other peaks in Snowdonia.
Low Points of the Moel Siabod, Snowdonia.
- Ensure you’ve got the right skills, and navigation skills for this hike.
- Midsection before the ridge can be boggy.
How to get to the Moel Siabod, Snowdonia.
I always park at Bryn Y Glo Cafe, Capel Curig, Betws-y-Coed LL24 0DT.
From here you follow the road North until you come to a bridge. Cross it and then keep right at the cattle grid before coming to a bend in the steep road. Take the trail and you’ll pop out further along the road. Turn left, over the fence, and then it’s a relatively straightforward walk up from here.
Keep left on the path and you’ll pass by a small lake and you’ll see the remnants of the slate quarry come into view. Navigate through these and you can find some amazing structures and buildings left from the old quarry.
Follow the path left of the second lake and then after a shortish climb, you’ll see the ridge come into play.
This flat section can be boggy, so just be careful of footing and try to follow the trail as best as you can.
You’ll want to head toward the base of the ridge before the scramble starts.
From here, the scramble is relatively straightforward with some more difficult sections. But keep to the left if you want an easier and more direct route to the summit. It truly is a fun and good scramble to get you going, just ensure you’ve got the right skills and navigation skills to be able to get through it all.
Once you’ve reached the summit you can stay high and follow the path down back towards the Plas Y Brenin center and then follow a road walk back to the Bryn Y Glo car park.
For a full circular route, I followed this trail on AllTrails:
Moel Siabod via Daear Ddu Circular
My Experience of Moel Siabod via Daear Ddu Ridge
I’ve said this for a long time, but Moel Siabod is by far one of my favorite hikes in all of Snowdonia.
Probably because it was one of my first when I got into hiking many years ago. But also because for some reason it’s still massively untouched. If you’re looking to avoid the weekend crowds of Snowdon, then this could be the trail for you.
Having done every route up Moel Siabod many times, I strongly recommend the scramble via the Daear Ddu ridge. It’s fun, not too sketchy, and is a great introduction to Snowdonia Scrambles.
Having done both Sunrise and Sunset over Moel Siabod, I’d say sunset is the best.
With incredible views over Snowdonia, including the Snowdon Horseshoe, Tryfan, and the Glyders, when the sun sets and the sky pops it can be a truly magical place to watch it go down.
What to do after Moel Siabod
If you’ve chased a sunrise then it would be rude not to stop at Moel Siabod Cafe on the way home for an incredible breakfast. If not breakfast, at least a round of toast and a massive hot drink to get you warm again.
Maybe you could head into Betws-y-Coed, visit the Swallow falls, get a bite to eat, and sit by the river.
If you’re looking for a good drive, then head back through Ogwen Valley. One of the best valleys in the world, hosting a plethora of hiking and climbing routes from the Ogwen Valley cottage.
There’s SO much on offer in Snowdonia, and I’ll be back to offer more guides, hikes, and secret spots to whet your appetite for your next trip to North Wales.