Rhobell Fawr

Page Type Page Type: Mountain/Rock
Location Lat/Lon: 52.81231°N / 3.80196°W
Additional Information County: Gwynedd
Activities Activities: Hiking, Bouldering
Seasons Season: Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter
Additional Information Elevation: 2408 ft / 734 m
Sign the Climber's Log


Okay lets be fair here, Rhobell Fawr (734m Ordnance datum) isn’t the most spectacular hill in the world, and when comparing it to Snowdonia’s other mountains it probably wouldn't score too highly. It doesn't match the scale of the Carneddau, lacks the ridges and arêtes of Snowdon, the cliffs of the Glyderau, the snows of the Arans and the romanticism of the Rhinogydd. It isn't even mentioned in the guidebooks. It is in fact just a rounded, rocky lump of a hill, isolated from its neighbouring mountains and surrounded by coniferous forest. A quick glance over the map and you might miss it altogether. So why, you might now be asking, would I want to climb this mountain? Well I'll tell you, because Rhobell Fawr is very special indeed.

Firstly, if you climb this mountain you will be completely alone, very few people ever visit it, and complete solitude in the mountains cannot be recommended enough. Secondly, the lack of paths and the intricate nature of the terrain provides a very rewarding navigational experience with the walker left entirely to their own devises. And thirdly, and this in my opinion is the clincher, to be had from the summit of this obscure mountain are some of the finest views in the whole of Wales. On a clear day, from this one spot, the whole of Snowdonia can be seen in one continuous sweeping panorama. In the distance to the north the mighty buttresses of Snowdon, Y Lliwedd and Crib Goch can be seen with the peaks of the Glyderau, Tryfan and the Carneddau raising up and sweeping around them. To the north and northwest the Arenigs and Arans rise majestically from the Migneit Plateau and the shores of Llyn Tegid. To the south the grand massif of Cadair Idris dominates the skyline, and on days of exceptional clarity the rounded summits of Pumlumon and the Cambrian Mountains can be seen for as far as the eye can see. To the west the wave like form of the Rhinogydd role from north to south, and beyond them the crystal blue waters of Cardigan Bay sparkle in the sunlight.

I hope this sufficient to persuade you that this little hill, this ancient volcano, this lonely summit, is worthy of a climb.

That Panorama

Rhinogs from Rhobell Fawr

Snowdon from Rhobell Fawr

Arenigs from Rhobell Fawr

Llyn Tegid from Rhobell Fawr
Llyn Tegid

Arans from Rhobell Fawr

When to climb

This is simple; do it in the winter when the air is dry and crisp, the sun is shining and the clouds are far and few between.

Mountain Conditions

This section displays the mountain conditions for Snowdonia, of which Rhobell Fawr is part. Click on the widget for maps and further information.

This Snowdonia weather forecast is generated by the Met Office Weather Widget

Getting There

The mountain can be climbed from Cwm yr Allt-lwyd (which translates as Valley of the Grey Wood) (SH 787 292) in the north, or Llanfachreth (SH 754 224) and Blaenau (SH 791 225) in the south. The south is easiest to get to, with a short drive from the A494 at Aran Hall School (SH 798 216) or from the A470 at Dolgellau (SH 728 117). Cwm yr Allt-lwyd is a little harder to reach and requires a long drive in off the A 470 either through Coed Y Brenin (SH 728 235) if coming from the south, or over the hills from Bronaber (SH 712 317) if coming from the north. In snowy conditions Cwm yr Allt-lwyd isn't recommended as the roads are often steep and won't be gritted and attempting to drive over them is just asking for trouble.

Red Tape and Access

No red tape or access issues here!

For climbers, hill walkers and mountaineers, the British Mountaineering Council (BMC) runs a Regional Access Database, which holds mountain/crag specific information on matters of conservation and access, including issues such as nesting restrictions, nature designations and preferred parking.

Regional Access Database

If you are in any doubt about any particular access arrangement, or need to report an incident, you should contact your local BMC Access Representative or the BMC Access Officers for Wales: Elfyn Jones.


There is camping available at Berthlwyd (SH 735 187) and Cymer Abbey (SH 721 192) in the south. Alternatively, if there are a few of you, or its winter and camping sound like an unnecessary form of torture, there are chalets available at Bronaber (SH 712 317) in the north.

Of course there are also a number of hotels and B&Bs to be found in the nearest town Dolgellau (SH 728 117).


Open Space Web-Map builder Code
Navigation Maps

OS 1:25k Explorer Series OL 18 Harlech, Porthmadog & Bala/Y Bala

OS 1:50k Landranger Series 124 Porthmadog & Dolgellau

Harvey Map Services 1:25k Snowdonia South Rhinogs/Rhinogydd

Road Maps

OS Road Map 9


External Links


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 Gwynedd.com

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