The Pen Yr Ole Wen hike in Snowdonia is one of my favourite hill days anywhere in the UK.
A good mixture of scrambling, hiking and generally a quieter peak in the Ogwen Valley. Pen Yr Ole Wen makes a great day out if you’re in Snowdonia.
One of the Welsh 3000’s but on the wrong side of Ogwen Valley to draw in mass numbers of tourists. This makes it one of the better peaks to climb in my opinion.
Not to mention the views over the Ogwen Valley. Tryfan prominently sticking out, with Y Garn, Devils Kitchen, and the Glyerdeau all in a great horseshoe view.
Quick Facts about Pen Yr Ole Wen Hike
- Distance: 8KM
- Time: 3-4 hours
- Best travel time: Anytime, but maybe avoid weekends if you want it to be quiet
- Difficulty: Not too difficult, the route can be difficult to follow in poor vis.
- Parking: Ogwen Cottage or anywhere in the OV.
High Points of the Pen Yr Ole Wen Hike
- Superb panoramic views throughout all of Snowdonia
- Fun scramble if you fancy it
- Interesting history surrounding Cwm Idwal
- One of the more quiet 3000ft peaks
Low Points of the Pen Yr Ole Wen Hike
Slippery in the wet, be careful.
How to get Pen Yr Ole Wen
Getting to Pen Ye Ole Wen is fairly straight forward. Parking is ample in Ogwen Valley and can be done in any of the designated lay-bys and also the Ogwen Cottage.
You’ll head towards the opposite side of the Ogwen Cottage for the purpose of this guide, you’ll be straight at the bottom side of Cwm Idwal.
Crossing the bridge and heading straight up from the road, the climb starts hard and continues that way the majority of the way up.
It’s a well-trodden route and if you want a decent scramble, this is the way to go. You can avoid the scramble by staying left on any of the trails leading through.
Here’s the AllTrails link I used.
My Experience of the Pen Yr Ole Wen Hike
I absolutely love the PYO hike and it is genuinely one of my favourites in all of Snowdonia.
Out of the 7/8 hikes I’ve done, I’d say 6 of them I’ve not seen another person.
Not only is it an incredible spot for a sunrise, but also a sunset too.
On the downward section of this route, and potentially the normal route you’d follow. The views over Tryfan are some of the most iconic in the whole of Wales.
This is an absolute must-do if you want to escape the crowds of Snowdon and experience some of the best Snowdonia has to offer.
What to do after your hike up Pen yr Ole Wen
Maybe you fancy getting some watersports in whilst you’re in North Wales? Visit Llyn Gwynant and paddle on one of Snowdonia’s finest lakes. If you’ve not got your own paddleboard or Kayak, you can rent one from the Llyn Gwynant campsite itself.
But if you’re making a weekend of it, here are some more ideas for you to tackle whilst you’re in god’s country, also known as Wales.
Tryfan via North Ridge
Moel Siabod via Daedu Ridge
Secret Waterfall – Snowdonia’s Last Hidden Gem
Llanberis Waterfall – A must-see!
Angelsey Barracks – Snowdonian History