Cycling in Snowdonia
Offroad Cycle Ride from Betws-y-Coed
Variation on a Llyn Elsi Theme
Forest tracks above Betws-y-Coed with fine mountain views. Goes along an ancient Roman Road, passing the deserted village of Rhwddolion, and visits Llyn Elsi, one of Snowdonia's most attractive lakes (vaguely reminiscent of Tarn Hows in the Lake District).
Start: Beics Betws in Betws y Coed OS Map Sheet 115 (Snowdon) grid ref 795564
Distance: Approx 24km (allow 2-4 hours)
Go through the village on the A5 north west in the direction of Capel Curig
After 1 km (at national speed limit sign)
Turn Left and follow Forest Enterprise waymarkers (square green posts with bike symbol) for
Llyn Elsi route
to grid ref 773563.
Leave waymarkers here and Turn Right on to forest track
Stay on this track for approx 2 km, descending first then climbing steadily to 756566. Steep descent here.
Turn Left at first junction and then immediate Right
Turn next Left to cross ford and continue to junction with minor road at 753573
Turn Left here and continue for 2 km to disused chapel (bunkhouse) at 737567 (do not take left at l km through Bryn Gefeilia Farm as this is a private track.)
Climb the rough track heading south alongside the old chapel through gate
Stay on this track (some carrying) to junction with Bryn Gefeilia track at 737560 (once again do not be tempted to take this track E or W as access is prohibited)
Ride the muddy rutted track (one gate) to forest gate at 732548
Go through the gate
Turn Left after 100 m. on to main forest track
Stay on this track for approx 2.5 km with long swooping descents to junction with A470 at 744528
Turn Left on to A470
After 1.5km Turn Left at 753538 and climb steeply up this track (tarmac initially)
After 0.5 km go through gate and then a further five gates to junction with forest track at 773562 after approximately 2km. This section is Sarn Helen, part of the Roman road from Caerhun, a Roman fort near Conwy, to the Roman camp at Trawsfynydd)
Do not cross this track but Turn Right and once again follow the FE waymarkers for the Llyn Elsi route. These take you past the lake with long descents to junction with minor road at 796553 (be careful on this last descent as this is an access road to smallholding at 793548 and there could be oncoming traffic).
Turn Left on minor road and return to Betws-y-Coed
This ride was contributed by Phil of Beics Betws
Photo: Russ Sheaf