If the A497 runs through flat coastal scenery, the A498, which penetrates the heart of the Snowdonia National Park, is a route of a very different character.
Starting a mile west of Porthmadog on the A497, it heads north-east, first passing beneath a railway line, then, half a mile a further on, intersecting the A487 at a roundabout junction before it enters Tremadog. Having passed through Tremadog, the road stays close to the base of the hills to the north west. Like many other roads in this group, it is accompanied by a large expanse of low-lying ground on one side and a barrier of hills on the other, and the route stays as close to the hills as possible.
After passing Prenteg, we find ourselves sandwiched between the tree-lined hillside and the River Glaslyn as we head north. At Pont Aberglaslyn, we meet the A4085 (formerly the A487), coming in from the south-east, and it is here that we lose the flat land lying to the right and instead enter the pass of Aberglaslyn, a picturesque gorge surrounded by high ground. We thread our way through the pass to reach the village of Beddgelert. The story of how Beddgelert got its name is very sad and worth reading, but I won't tell it here.
At the T-junction in the village, the A4085 resumes, taking the left-hand road and marking the south-western flank of the Snowdon range itself, while the A498 turns right towards Capel Curig, still following the River Glaslyn. We pass Sygun Copper Mine, then Llyn Dinas, before entering a more wooded area as we cross the river to follow the south-eastern shore of Llyn Gwynant. Beyond the lake, we start to climb away from the river, which has its source at Llyn Glaslyn, a lake cradled in a cwm (corrie) in the shadow of Snowdon itself. The A498 continues north to reach its terminus on the A4086, outside the Pen-y-Gwryd Hotel, which has given its name to the PYG track, one of the best-known routes up Snowdon.
The A498, therefore, has it all: coastal scenery, wide river plains, a spectacular wooded pass, and views of Snowdon to the west of the northern end of the road.