Cycling UK urges everyone to respect voluntary bike restriction on Snowdon

Lone cyclist heading up Mount Snowdon in the early morning
During the summer months, cyclists are allowed up Snowdon in the early morning and late evening. Photo: Tom Hutton
As the UK heads into the Bank Holiday Weekend, Cycling UK is reminding anyone considering riding up Snowdon to respect the longstanding voluntary cycle restrictions in order to ensure everyone can enjoy the mountain equally and safely.

The national charity’s advice comes after Snowdonia National Park Authority (NPA) has reported incidents of a number of individuals flouting the restriction and riding inappropriately, impacting on the safety and enjoyment of other users. The park authority has warned that if this activity becomes regular, then the long-term access for cyclists on Snowdon could be at risk. 

With close to 375,000 people walking up Mount Snowdon every year, it’s the UK’s most popular mountain by far– and one of the most climbed mountains in the world.

It is Snowdon’s remarkable popularity that presents a potential safety risk for both cyclists and walkers. In 2003, Snowdonia NPA, Cycling UK and other cycling groups drew up a voluntary restriction to operate during peak hours, which saw cyclists agreeing not to exercise their legal right to ride on the three bridleways to the summit: the Llanberis, Snowdon Ranger and Rhyd Ddu paths.

The restriction operates between 10am and 5pm from the beginning of May to the end of September. It has worked well for the last fifteen years allowing cyclists to enjoy riding on the mountain during the summer months while also minimising the potential for conflict with Snowdon’s other users. 

Cycling UK would also urge all users to support a message of 'share with care and respect for others' and remind riders that they have a duty to give way to pedestrians and horse riders on bridleways, as required by the Countryside Act 1968.

Snowdonia National Park’s access officer Peter Rutherford said:

“We ask that mountain bikers respect the standing agreement between the Snowdonia National Park and various mountain bike user groups and stay off the Llanberis, Snowdon Ranger and Rhyd Ddu paths between 10am and 17.00 from the 1st of May to the end of September.

“The agreement has worked well for many years, showing that all users can share the paths successfully, but this does rely on individuals complying with the agreement, which most do.

“We’re delighted that so many mountain bikers come to Snowdonia and choose to ride on our highest mountain, and the success of this agreement could lead to increased access in other areas over time, so we would urge cyclists to please respect other users and exercise due caution – especially on their descents.”

Paul Tuohy, Cycling UK’s Chief Executive said:

“In 2003 Cycling UK helped broker the voluntary agreement among the cycling community to give up their legal rights to access Snowdon by bike during its busiest periods. This was done out of respect for others’ using the mountain and to minimise conflict.

“Unfortunately, the actions of a minority risk undermining the reputation of the wider cycling community and threatening the rights for others to enjoy Snowdon.  Cycling UK is saying to everyone heading to Snowdon between May and September that if you want to ride, then get up a bit earlier or go up a little later. Share with care and respect others so that everyone can enjoy the mountain.”

Notes to editors

  1. Cycling UK, the national cycling charity, inspires and helps people to cycle and keep cycling, whatever kind of cycling they do or would like to do. Over a century’s experience tells us that cycling is more than useful transport; it makes you feel good, gives you a sense of freedom and creates a better environment for everyone.

Press contact information

For more information contact the national Cycling UK Press Office on 01483 238 315, 07786 320 713 or email