Snowdonia (Welsh: Eryri) is a region in north Wales and a national park of 823 square miles (2,130 km2) in area. It was the first to be designated of the three National Parks in Wales, in 1951.
The Snowdon Mountain Railway (SMR) (Welsh: Rheilffordd yr Wyddfa) is a narrow gauge rack and pinion mountain railway in Gwynedd, north-west Wales. It is a tourist railway that travels for 4.7 miles (7.6 km) from Llanberis to the summit of Snowdon, the highest peak in England and Wales.
The SMR is the only public rack and pinion railway in the United Kingdom, and after more than 100 years of operation it remains a popular tourist attraction. The line is owned and operated by Heritage Great Britain plc, operators of several other tourist attractions in the United Kingdom.
The railway is operated in some of the harshest weather conditions in Britain, with services curtailed from reaching the summit in bad weather and remaining closed during the winter from November to mid-March. Single carriage trains are pushed up the mountain by either steam locomotives or diesel locomotives. It has also previously used diesel railcars as multiple units.
The SMR was the inspiration for the fictional Culdee Fell Railway, appearing in the book "Mountain Engines", part of the "The Railway Series" written by Reverend W. Awdry.
Snowdon (Welsh: Yr Wyddfa, pronounced [əɾ ˈwɪðva]) is the highest mountain in Wales, at an altitude of 1,085 metres (3,560 ft) above sea level, and the highest point in the British Isles outside Scotland. It is located in Snowdonia National Park (Parc Cenedlaethol Eryri) in Gwynedd, and has been described as "probably the busiest mountain in Britain". It is designated as a national nature reserve for its rare flora and fauna.
The rocks that form Snowdon were produced by volcanoes in the Ordovician period, and the massif has been extensively sculpted by glaciation, forming the pyramidal peak of Snowdon and the arêtes of Crib Goch and Y Lliwedd. The cliff faces on Snowdon, including Clogwyn Du'r Arddu, are significant for rock climbing, and the mountain was used by Edmund Hillary in training for the 1953 ascent of Mount Everest.