Climbing Mount Snowdon with Kids

Back in September last year I wrote my 50 places to visit before I hit the big 5-0, with number 4 on the list being climbing Mount Snowdon, which stands at 1,085 m (3,560 ft), making it the highest mountain in Wales, and the highest point in the British Isles outside Scotland.

Last week we headed to North Wales and stayed in a beautiful cottage in Anglesey, which is only a short drive from Snowdonia, so now was my chance to tick it off my list.

We have been on family walking holidays to the Lake District and Yorkshire Dales, so have a good idea of the walking capabilities of the kids and what we needed to pack.

If you are planning to climb Snowdon you need to do your research as there are several different paths to choose from. The Llanberis Path is the most popular and easiest hiking route, however we plumped for the Snowdon Ranger route as it is shorter.

There is a small carpark at Llyn Cwellyn, which costs £6 for the day and the pathway is across the other side of the road, past the railway track and a farmhouse.

Snowdon Rangers Path

The path is a bit of a baptism of fire as it gains height rapidly by way of a set of zig-zags which are quite tough-going, especially for little legs.

Snowdon Rangers Path

Thankfully the fields that surround these were full of cute lambs, which gave the kids something else to focus on and spurred them on and Sebby managed to persuade Kian for a shoulder ride.

Snowdon Rangers Path

Once you are past the gate at the top of the zig zags, the path is much more gentle on the legs and the views across the lake below make that initial climb worthwhile.

Snowdon Rangers Path

The pathways here are littered with interesting things for the kids to find and there were little bridges over streams, where we could make up stories about trolls and some nice large rocks which we could sit on for a much needed rest.

Snowdon Rangers Path

At the beginning of the walk, I set up my activity tracker on my watch, which measured our distance and to motivate the kids further, every time we hit our target, the kids got a treat. (Haribo and Freddo biscuits worked well)

Snowdon Rangers Path

After such a nice flat path, the next stage of the walk proved much more challenging.

Snowdon Rangers Path

There are more zig zags, which are much more of a scramble than the first set. These didn’t phase Isaac and Eliza, but Sebby struggled here and had to be lifted up and over some of the larger rocks.

Snowdon Rangers Path

I have to admit that it was at this part of the climb was where we nearly gave up, however a stop for lunch gave us a much needed boost and we decided to continue.

Snowdon Rangers Path

The sight of snow gave the kids another boost, although it was too icy for a snowball fight sadly.

Eliza Snow on Snowdon

The snow was quite deep in places and covered the pathway, making it quite tricky to negotiate, but we were almost there.

Snowdon Rangers Path

As you approach the summit, the paths merge together you see a lot more people making the climb, or coming back down, with lots of cheery “you’re nearly there” comments.

Snowdon Summit

From a sunny start to the walk, we were now in the clouds and the wind was howling around us. We made the decision, not to take Eliza and Sebby up the summit steps as it was too dangerous.

Snowdon Summit

Hubby and Isaac went up first whilst we stayed with Eliza and Sebby and then I headed up with Kian.

Snowdon Summit

We were treated to a brief view of the mountain below from the summit when the clouds parted, so I can only imagine how stunning it is on a clear day.

Snowdon Summit

It was then time to head back down again!!

Snowdon Rangers Path

We walked a distance of 8.8 miles, there and back, and climbed 936 metres in a time of 6 hours and 40 minutes.

Snowdon Rangers Path

Top Tips for Climbing Snowdon with Kids

  • Check the weather forecast before you leave
  • Follow mountain safety guidelines.
  • Wear sensible clothing and walking boots, you will appreciate that extra grip
  • Be prepared for all weathers, it may be sunny and warm at the start, but the weather is very different at the summit.
  • Take plenty of food and drink – a balanced lunchbox is best but we also had sweets and biscuits for added encouragement
  • Look out for the stone markers / signs to help your navigation.
  • Allow yourself plenty of time to summit and get back down.
  • There is a visitor centre at the top, with a cafe, however it was closed during our climb. It typically opens from late Spring to the last weekend in October.
  • Be prepared for lots of rest breaks
  • Take fun equipment for the kids to use. A compass and binoculars are great for distracting them from tired legs
  • If in any doubt, take the Snowdon Mountain Railway. It is currently running 3/4 of the way up the mountain, but will head to the summit from late Spring to the last weekend in October – they were clearing the snow from the tracks during our climb.

18 thoughts on “Climbing Mount Snowdon with Kids

  1. What an amazing thing to have been able to do as a family. I bet it would have been wonderful getting to the top and so nice that people give you a friendly nearly there as you get to the top!

  2. Love mount Snowdon, the views are definatley worth the hike. We have climbed with our children too, the youngest were in back carriers (hubby carried them the whole way)
    We have done 3 routes and the best one with children was the route you took.
    We are off again next month for my.husbands 40th
    So glad you got to tick it off of your bucket list x

  3. Congratulations to you and the children on making it to the top. I have done quite a lot of walking in Snowdonia but never made it to the top. I think I would be scared to do it when it was icy.

  4. Well done to you all. This is a mega achievement and a great memory.
    Thank you for all the info. We are heading there next month. Although with my newborn I will be taking the train!

  5. BIG well done to all of you. I climbed Snowdon years ago and would love to take my son one day. I love your treat ideas for the kids. We have a walking holiday in Yorkshire booked for the summer so I am pinching this idea. The scenery looks stunning and I am very jealous of the lambs. We hardly have any around here

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