Work is beginning this week on a new path between Beddgelert and Rhyd-Ddu, a small part of a planned circular route that will eventually lap the whole Snowdon massif.
Walkers, cyclists and horse riders who currently wish to travel from Beddgelert to Rhyd-Ddu have to follow an ad-hoc mix of paths and the busy, winding A4085.
If the work goes to schedule, the new purpose-built road-free route will be open by summer 2013. The northern end of the trail is the Snowdonia National Park's Car Park in the village of Rhyd-Ddu. From here the route passes around Llyn y Gader, over the old causeway and through Parc y Gader, then on through Beddgelert Forest to the National Park's Car Park in Beddgelert.
The 2m-wide, 7km trail will link sections of new public footpaths, sections of existing public footpaths which have been upgraded, and modified stretches of Forestry Commission track.
On behalf of the National Park Authority, the Director of Land Management, Emyr Williams said,
'This path will be an important addition to the economic prosperity of the area, and will also form an important link to the wider scheme of creating a network of trails that will surround Snowdon and eventually form the Snowdon Circuit.'
'We are very grateful to community councils and landowners for their support.'
55% of the project is funded by the National Park Authority, and the rest by the CAN strategic project (Communities and Nature) which is led and managed by the Countryside Council for Wales, and part funded by the European Regional Development Fund through the Welsh Government.
For a pdf map of the route see here.