Page Type
Snowdonia, Wales, Europe
Route Type:
Trad Climbing
Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter
Time Required:
Less than two hours
HS 4b (5.6 - 5.7)
Number of Pitches:

Route Quality: 1 Votes

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Created On: Jul 4, 2010
Last Edited On: Jan 17, 2015


Birdcage, so called after the deep, dark, cleft below the belay ledge of the The Diagonal, is a three pitch journey up the right hand side of The Bastion. It's given the grade of Hard Severe 4b and while the first and third pitches aren't up to particularity much, the middle section is wonderfully steep, exposed, and not too taxing. All in all, a very enjoyable outing.

As with so many of the routes on this part of Craig yr Aderyn, the exit is quite steep, long, grassy and unprotected, so take care when looking for anchors.

FA: R. A. Wilson and P. Surfleet, April 1967.

Getting There

Craig yr AderynCraig yr Aderyn
(Photo by Nanuls)
Craig yr AderynThe Bastion
(Photo by Nanuls)
Craig yr AderynPitch 1
(Photo by Nanuls)

Most visitors to Craig yr Aderyn will approach the rock from the east, if you have to approach from the west, then you clearly know the area well enough already, and therefore don’t need a section such as this to help you get there. So, if you are coming from the east, you need to turn off the A470 at the Cross Foxes Inn junction (SH 766 167), and drive south along the A487 for some 6km to the junction for the B4405 near the Minffordd Hotel (SH 732 114). For those familiar with the area, this is the same turning as you would take for the car park on the southern side of Cadair Idris where the Minffordd Path starts. Drive along the B4405 as far as Abergynolwyn (SH 677 069). In the centre of the village there is a crossroads, turn right here and drive north up a narrow unclassified road to another set of crossroads marked by a public phone box (SH 662 079). Turn left here and drive west along another unclassified road. After a around a kilometre and a half the road reaches Craig yr Aderyn and passes along the base of its north face, There are various lay-bys along the road where parking is available.

Park under The Bastion face and saunter up to the start of the route (see photo below).

Route Description

The route starts around halfway between the prominent diagonal crack of The Diagonal (Severe) and the fence, which runs from the road to the bottom of The Bastion.

Birdcage (HS 4b) (Photo by Nanuls)

Pitch 1. 12m

This pitch is a bit of a nothingness really, just think of it as a prelude to the real climbing. Ascend a rightwards slanting slab and traverse up, with little difficulty and little gear, into the base of the cleft. Spike belay.

Pitch 2. 12m. 4b

A great pitch. Climb up into the cleft moving out left onto the slightly overhanging wall. Ascend this on beautiful, widely spaced, jugs (maybe harder than 4b for the very short) to a tree belay. The tree has several old slings and cords wrapped around it.

Pitch 3. 9m

Climb up around the tree, over some boulders and up the vegetated wall above. Take care when topping out as there is a long unprotected grassy slope of around 45º before any anchors are reached. There's a nut belay well back on a short wall, with a large verticalish crack running through its centre.

Essential Gear

The route is three pitches long and takes a variety of gear from small to large wires as well as a variety of cams. Double ropes are essential for avoiding rope drag. A few slings will be very handy when building belays.

One of the best views in Snowdonia. The mountain in the centre of the photo is Cadair Idris (Photo by Nanuls)


Open Space Web-Map builder Code
Navigation Maps

Ordnance Survey 1:25k Explorer Series OL 23 Cadair Idris & Bala Lake/Llyn Tegid

Ordnance Survey 1:50k Landranger Series 124 Porthmadog & Dolgellau

Harvey Map Services 1:25k Snowdonia Cadiar Idris

Harvey Map Services/BMC 1:40k British Mountain Map Snowdonia South

Road Maps

Ordnance Surbey Tour Series North and Mid Wales


Snowdonia (Official National Park Guide) Snowdonia (Official National Park Guide) by Merfyn Williams with contributions from Ian Mercer and Jeremy Moore

A handy book full of useful information and interesting facts about the National Park.
Climbers Club Guide Wales: Meirionnydd Climbers' Club Guide Wales: Meirionnydd by Martin Crocker, John Sumner, Terry Taylor, Elfyn Jones, with contributions from Mike Rosser, Mike Lewis and Dave Wrennall

The definitive climbing guide to the area. Contains detailed descriptions and excellent diagrams of all known routes on Craig yr Aderyn. An essential purchase if you plan to do a lot of climbing in Mid Wales.
Rock Climbing in Snowdonia Rock Climbing in Snowdonia by Paul Williams

A good general rock climbing guide for North Wales. It describes a few routes on The Bastion and has a handy photo-topo of the face. Ideal for the occasional visitor to the area.

External Links

Craig yr AderynCraig yr Aderyn from the opposite hills © Copyright Chris Denny and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence
Craig yr AderynA great place to spend a day (Photo by Nanuls)

Government Bodies and Official Organisations

Snowdonia National Park Authority

Council for National Parks

Association of National Park Authorities

Natural Resources Wales


Royal Commission on Ancient & Historical Monuments in Wales

Gwynedd Archaeological Trust

Snowdonia Society

The National Trust

Hiking, Climbing and Mountaineering Organisations and Companies

British Mountaineering Council

The Climbers’ Club


Plas y Brenin National Mountain Centre

Hightreck Snowdonia


Mountain Weather Wales

Weather from the Met Office

BBC Weather

Tourist Information

Visit Wales

North Wales Tourism Partnership

Local Information from

Local Information from Snowdonia Wales Net

North Wales Index


Welsh Public Transport Information

UK Train Timetable


Youth Hostel Association in Wales

Pete's Eats

Pen-y-Gwryd Hotel

Maps and Guidebooks

Ordnance Survey

Harvey Map Services

Cicerone Guidebooks

Climbers’ Club Guidebooks


North Wales Bouldering

Cordee Travel and Adventure Sports Bookshop

Wildlife and Conservation

Joint Nature Conservation Committee

Natur Gwynedd

North Wales Wildlife Trust

Royal Society for the Protection of Birds


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