United KingdomWales

Snowdonian Lakes


The walk between these two Snowdonian lakes, Llyn Ogwen and Llyn Idwal, was sublime on a blustery summer day. We trekked up towards the mountains in search of the Devil’s Kitchen, a tall jagged rock formation around a dark, boulder-strewn alley.

The sunlight reflecting off the surface of the lake gives Llyn Idwal (on the right) the appearance of a sheet of glass, or smooth obsidian.

It was a spontaneous decision to get out and wander, on a drive back north from Blaenau and Betws. Seeing a place marked on the map as the ‘Devil’s Kitchen’, we decided to get out and explore and hunt for it.

The lower lake lies at the bottom of a valley, alongside a twisting road, the A5, that winds its way through this part of Snowdonia. It was a couple of hours’ trek up from Llyn Ogwen to Llyn Idwal, choosing an adventurous route through a steep rocky gulley.

We passed sheep and wild mushrooms, and a fisherman wading out into the smooth clear water of Lake Idwal. The lake has a white shingle beach on one side, and on the other shore it backs up against a sheer cliff of the mountain.

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