Park Authority

Plas Tan y Bwlch

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Routes Closed

Which areas are closed?

There is currently no public access to the following mountain areas:

  • Yr Wyddfa (Snowdon)
  • Cader Idris
  • 'Ogwen' - Y Garn, Glyderau, Tryfan and Cwm Idwal
  • Aran Benllyn and Aran Fawddwy

Detailed maps can be found here at the bottom of the page.

Why have the mountains been closed?

On Monday the 23rd of March 2020, Westminster enacted the lockdown and a few days later the Welsh Government enacted in law measures to require the closure of certain public rights of way and access land to be closed where:

  • the areas are liable to large numbers of people congregating or being too near each other
  • their use poses a high risk of spreading coronavirus within the area

The National Park Authority is implementing these Welsh laws that oblige us to help prevent the spread of Coronavirus and protect our communities and our local health and voluntary rescue services.

More information on the timeline of the response in Wales can be found here.

What is the National Park Authority doing during lockdown to prevent the spread of the disease?

We are reviewing the existing closures on a weekly basis, taking into consideration any emerging issues, updates to Government guidance, risks to local communities and any feedback received.

The existing closures will only be reversed when Government guidance and legislation allows us to do so, and we feel that there should be no unintended mixed messages about the re-opening of the area to the wider population. Our priority is keeping the communities, and health services and voluntary rescue services in the area safe.

With the support of the North Wales Police our Wardens are patrolling the area to monitor the situation and respond quickly to any incidents. On a number of occasions those found to be flouting the rules have been fined and sent home.

We meet daily with Authorities from across North Wales to agree on messaging and communication based on the most recent Government guidance. Mid-week we begin to push out messaging and advice to visitors about the importance of following government guidance.

Behind the scenes plans are being drawn up for the next phase including recovery, with full consideration given to the risks an dimpacts in relation to the environment, economy and people’s well-being.

We are working with colleagues from protected landscapes across Wales and the UK to co-ordinate our plans. We are also reviewing European and global methods for phased returns in terms of what is working and what isn’t.

Not all of our staff are able to work from home, and so number of our colleagues have volunteered to help other organisations whilst they can’t carry out their usual duties. Terry is  a member of our project estate team, but during this period he’s helping deliver medical supplies in his local area.

We’re also looking at other ways we can help local communities and businesses during these challenging times.

What does the law say?

On Monday the 23rd of March 2020, Westminster enacted the lockdown and a few days later the Welsh Government enacted in law measures to require the closure of certain public rights of way and access land to be closed where:

  • the areas are liable to large numbers of people congregating or being too near each other
  • their use poses a high risk of spreading coronavirus within the area

The new laws are The Health Protection (Coronavirus Restrictions) (Wales) Regulations 2020, they are aimed at:

  • Local Authorities
  • National Park Authorities
  • Natural Resources Wales
  • The National Trust

These regulations do not prevent people from going outside to exercise, but they do enable the closure of areas prone to crowding and where social distancing is difficult to maintain. The regulations also reinforce the importance of exercising close to home.

Can I travel to exercise?

The regulations in Wales are now different from those in England. The new minor amendments to Welsh laws and measures apply to those in Wales as well as those travelling across the border to Wales.  The amendments in England do not apply to Wales. In Wales the regulations are still to stay at home.

If you live in Wales you cannot travel to exercise but are encouraged to continue to exercise from your doorstep where possible. You can now do this more than once a day.

More detailed information on the Welsh law can be found here.

There are different measures in place for those with specific health or mobility issues which can be found here on the link above. Please contact us if you are unable to exercise close to home because of these specific reasons and we can provide detailed advice and guidance on what options there are available to you.

If you live in England, you can travel to exercise but only within England. You cannot travel to an area within Wales to exercise.

Please be aware of and respect the information and guidance provided by individual National Parks across the UK.

You can find more information here.

How has the new Welsh law been enacted in Snowdonia?

In Snowdonia, after much consideration, we decided to close the area’s busiest mountains to all members of the public. We decided to keep other areas of the National Park with public access open in order to ensure that people living locally could exercise from their doorstep.

A balance had to be struck between sending out a strong message that the area is closed to visitors to slow the spread of the virus and protect our local communities and health services, whilst ensuring that people living in the area were still able to exercise from their doorstep.

There have been some areas in the north of the National Park were access has been affected for local people and we sincerely apologise for this. We review the closures on a weekly basis to see whether we can make changes or adjustments without impacting inadvertently on clarity of messaging and spread of the virus.

The total length of paths closed to the public in Snowdonia is 174km / 108 miles - this is 6.3% of the total public right of way network in the National Park.

The total area in ha of CROW access land closed to the public is 23,500ha – this amounts to 18.4% of the CROW access land in Snowdonia and 11% of the total land area.

Please do get in touch if you have any feedback or questions on the closures.

Where can I find out more details on the closures?

Below are a list of maps showing all routes and areas with access closures.

We have worked with Gwynedd Council on these closures, and the maps show all the routes and areas that are closed.

We have worked hard to try and maintain a balance between the closure of honey pot sites to deter visitors and ensuring that local people are still able to exercise from their doorstep whilst Government guidelines allow for this. We know that as a result of these closures some communities have less access to open spaces and we sincerely apologise for this. Our priority at this time must be to slow the spread of the disease and to protect our local communities and health services.

The main advice in relation to the current situation is as follows:

  • Do not travel to exercise – exercise outdoors close to your home.
  • Go alone or with members of your household - keep 2 metres / 6½ feet away from others at all times.
  • Be vigilant with hand washing and hygiene – be aware that gates, stiles and other outdoor structures are touched regularly.
  • Do not undertake new or risky activities – stay safe during this time of increased burden on our emergency and health services.
  • Follow the Countryside Code - consider farmers and others who are working hard to keep our shelves stocked and infrastructure running.

Will there be any further closures? When will the closures end?

The measures and closures have been put in place in order to slow the spread of the disease. Much of the success of the measures are reliant on strong and clear messaging.

We review the closures on a weekly basis along with any issues that have been raised by the public and other organisations.

The closures are very unlikely to be relaxed until the Welsh Government changes its policies in relation to the lockdown. Doing so any earlier could send a confusing message to the public, both local and visitors. This will be particularly important as lockdown fatigue sets in. However, we will continue to review on a weekly basis.

Our priority is keeping the communities, health and voluntary rescue services in the area safe.

The Welsh Government has produced a framework for the easing of lockdown measures. The framework – and the seven questions – will help determine when the time is right to relax some of the stay-at-home regulations.

The seven questions are:

  • Would easing a restriction have a negative effect on containing the virus?
  • Does a particular measure pose a low risk of further infection?
  • How can it be monitored and enforced?
  • Can it be reversed quickly if it creates unintended consequences?
  • Does it have a positive economic benefit?
  • Does it have a positive impact on people’s wellbeing?
  • Does it have a positive impact on equality?

We are keen to hear any concerns so please do get in contact if you have any questions or issues to raise.

Where can I find information on closures in other parts of Wales?

The Welsh Government has produced a guide to public rights of way and access closures across Wales.

You can find out all the information here.