This is probably the shortest and most interesting hiking route to the summit of Glasgwm. It begins, where many of the trails for the Arans begin, at the Fawnog Fawr car park (SH 854 182) in Cwm Cywarch just below the mountains best feature – Craig Cywarch. The route follows the valley up to the pass between Glaswm and Aran Fawddwy, before following the line of the Aran Ridge to the mountain’s rounded summit. Although the mountain isn’t really much of a prospect for most hikers, this route is really quite nice and shows off the best Glasgwm has to offer.
To reach the trailhead turn off the A470, which runs between Dolgellau (SH 729 181) in the west and Machynlleth (SH 748 008) in the south-east, at Dinas Mawddwy (SH 858 148) and take the road towards Aber-Cywarch (SH 867 157). Just after you cross the bridge at Aber-Cywarch turn left up an unclassified road signposted for Cwm Cywarch. Follow the road, which is narrow and winding, until you reach the parking area at Fawnog Fawr (SH 854 182). The route begins here.
Leave the car-park by following the road north until it terminates at Blaencywarch Farm (SH 852 159). From here continue north along the footpath which gradually turns to the left along the north-eastern slope of Craig Cywarch. The path follows the contours of the valley, and after around a kilometre crosses a stream by a concrete footbridge. As you walk up the valley you will pass along the northern crags of Craig Cywarch, which terminate at the head of the valley. The path then follows the stream up the valley, and eventually, near the valley’s head, it crosses back over the stream. From here there gradient eases and the path follows a fence to the head of the pass and another fence which runs across the spine of the Aran Ridge. You will know you’re in the right place if you have just bypassed a small pond and the boggy ground that surrounds it. At the fence junction turn left, and follow the fence (the one which runs the length of the Arans) that leads up the northern slope of Glasgwm. The summit area is characterised by a couple of small lakes and is marked by a small cairn.
Naturally you will need all the paraphernalia associated with hill walking in Wales: full waterproofs, fleece, hat, gloves, map, compass and of course some lunch.
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OS 1:25k Explorer Series OL 23 Cadair Idris & Bala Lake / Llyn Tegid
OS 1:50k Landranger Series 124 Porthmadog & Dolgellau
OS Road Map 9 Wales/Cymru & West Midlands
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