Conwy Area
Northern Region
Isle of Anglesey
The Carneddau and
the Glyderau

West Coast
South West
South East
Map and Satellite

Carneddau and

Carnedd Dafydd
Carnedd Llywelyn
Cwm Idwal
Glyder Fawr
Llyn Bochlwyd
Llyn Cowlyd
Llyn Eigiau
Llyn Ogwen
Ogwen Falls
Pen Yr Ole Wen

Pen yr Ole Wen

OS Grid ref:- SH655619

Pen yr Ole WenHeather clad Pen yr Ole Wen, pronounced as Pen ur Ola Wen, is the most southerly peak of the Carneddau Massif.

With its pyramidal peak rising to 3,209 feet (978 metres), it is the third highest mountain in the Carneddau range. The mountain lies to the north of Idwal Cottage youth hostel on the A5 road by Llyn Ogwen at the head of the Nant Francon Valley and is alternately accesible from Capel Curig..

Pen yr Ole Wen is often climbed as part of a longer route on the Carneddau range. It may climbed from the hostel by a path that leads directly up the south west "corner", climbing 675 metres in about 1.5 km (i.e. an average gradient of nearly 1 in 2).

A slightly easier ascent involves starting from Tal-y-Llyn Ogwen, about a mile south-east from the hostel, following the stream until nearing the outflow from the mountain lake Ffynnon Lloer and then branching left to take the path up the ridge.

The name Pen yr Ole Wen has until recently been translated at "Head of the White Light," the interpretation of which remained a mystery, until in March, 2004, a lecture was given by the hill-walker and guidebook author John Nuttall, at University College, Chester, with regard to the translation of the mountain's name. The "Wen", he explained is a mutation of "Gwen," meaning white, and is the feminine adjective, therefore "Ole" cannot derive from "Golau," or light, as it is a masculine noun. The "Ole" instead, he asserted, derives from "Goleddf," or slope, therefore the correct translation of Pen Yr Ole Wen actually should be "Head of the White Slope."

The Route to the summit of Pen yr Ole Wen

Stay safe, by following a few simple rules when walking in the mountains:-