Nantmoor skyline Route 4
Get your hands on rock in Snowdonia
V iewed from the west, Cnicht and the Moelwynion present a deliciously irresistible challenge that attracts its fair share of footfall as baggers pick off the main summits. But beyond this bold facade lies a complex tableland of miniature peaks, hidden lakes and abandoned quarries, offering a number of permutations for walks on which solitude and exploration are the order of the day. This particular mountain journey starts from the tranquil valley of Nantmor and traces its south-eastern skyline. Cnicht’s airy summit forms the centrepiece and focal point of the walk but is far from the be all and end all. Indeed, away from that most celebrated of Snowdonia’s minor peaks, you will feel like a pioneer as you leave the beaten ways for seldom trodden hillsides, chance upon secretive sky-mirror lakes and forge your way through a landscape as fresh and unspoiled as it was 100 years ago. In the course of your perambulations you may look across to lumps and bumps and distant bodies of water, wondering what lies beyond them and, if you are anything like me, you will return to find out, piecing together your mental map of this enigmatic tract of wild country.
Atmospheric conditions on Cnicht’s summit ridge with cloud-topped Moel Siabod beyond.
Bwlch y Battel and its innominate lake.