back to archiveTryfan still a mountain at 3,010 feet

Tryfan still a mountain at 3,010 feet

A team of three skilled amateur surveyors supported by the Snowdonia society scaled Tryfan with high-tech GPS equipment on Thursday 24th June and confirmed that it is well above the magic 3,000 foot threshold.

This iconic Snowdonia peak has in fact grown in stature according to the surveyor's measurements, which have been verified by the Ordnance Survey.

It was feared that Tryfan could have fallen short of the 3,000ft (914m) elite mountain status needed to keep as one of Wales' 14 highest peaks. However, the three amateur enthusiasts John Barnard, Myrddyn Phillips and Graham Jackson scaled it with GPS equipment and found the peak came in at 3,010 ft (917.44m) - 8 ft (2.43m) taller than its previous  measurement. This new height is accurate to just a few centimetres and surveyor Graham Jackson told the Snowdonia Society that, barring natural disaster, it is very unlikely to be challenged or questioned in future.

Tryfan, one of the best known mountains in the Ogwen Valley, appears on the map at 3,002ft or 915m. The new measurement will return it to the official OS height before the 1980s.

Before climbing Tryfan, John Barnard, from Mold, Flintshire, one of the amateur experts involved in the re-measuring, said: "We're using exactly the same process as the GPS systems on your car, your sat navs, talking to the satellites, getting signals and measuring distances and then via some complex mathematics we can work out the height above sea level."

Alun Pugh, member and former Director of the Snowdonia Society, accompanied the surveyors in scaling the peak on 24 June and said prior to the remeasurement that Tryfan would still be a "wonderful summit", no matter how high it actually was.

Tryfan is one of the 14 "elite" 3,000 ft peaks in Wales and for almost a century mountaineers have tried to complete the challenge of climbing all of them. The Snowdonia Society maintains a database of people who have completed all 14 peaks - visit our site at

See the Society's previous coverage of the Tryfan remeasurement here, along with links to BBC articles and You Tube footage.

As their next project, the surveyors will be focusing on Glyder Fawr, the summit of which is currently recorded at 999m, making it the fifth highest mountain in Wales. You can see the attraction of this peak for the trio!