If you find a dryish day in amongst the November downpours, or just want to keep a few walks in mind for summer, this is a good one. Plus, you get two who Iron Age hillforts for the price of one, which can’t be bad 🙂 I haven’t done this for years, and cannot find the photos, but if this is a terrific walk, not at all strenuous, in spite of the stunning views that you are rewarded with over Cader Idris, the Mawddach valley and estuary, and the surrounding hills. Incorporated into the walk is also a lovely lake, actually a reservoir for supplying water to Dolgellau, at the foot of the hill on the carpark side. Updated info is below the leaftlet, plus a little bit about the hillforts. You can also download the PDF here.
The walk is on private land, so access is at the courtesy of the Nannau Estate, which allows public access via the marked footpaths. It is a very easy route to follow with easy gradients, mostly level once you get to the main walk, and the route around the hill is a circular one, as the name implies. It is quite narrow and not recommended for anyone with vertigo. The return leg takes walkers along the reservoir, Llyn Cynwch. It takes about an hour an a bit, on average.
The Foel Faner hillfort on the Precipice Walk requires a small diversion from the main route, also accessible via a footpath, and well marked (marked as “camp” on the above leaflet). This also provides some more great views. The hillfort is an irregular oval and has a single line of defenses, quite substantially built and easy to identify (unlike some hillforts in Gwynedd). The entrance is at the northeast, about 12ft wide, and has an additional bank to protect it. It has very few natural defense, and the main advantage of the hillfort’s position is the visibility over a very wide area.
The second hillfort is on the hill opposite the precipice walk, so you can use the same car park and head over the road and follow a gentle footpath that runs along the base of the hill, Foel Offrwm. When you reach a wall, turn right and follow it for about half a mile, which takes you to the entrance of the hillfort, but between where the wall ends and the hillfort begins is a steep stretch of open hillside, a much more ambitious walk than the Precipice Walk. Unlike Foel Faner, the location is strategically good, and the views are probably even better. There is a single line of drystone defence that is reinforced with an additional line of defence to the southeast. There is a single in-turned entrance to the east. Well worth a visit.