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  • A week in Pembrokshire – what bike to take?
  • Premier Icon binners
    Full Member

    Morning all.

    We’re off to Solva on Saturday. Lovely. Can’t wait.

    I just did a search on cycling in the area. The first link was to a thread from about 7 years ago on here that said the mountain biking is limited, so just take a road bike instead.

    I just wanted to check this is still the case? The whole point is to chill out for the week, so I don’t want to be slinging bikes in the back of cars to drive anywhere, I want to ride from the door.

    So is it a road bike job (I’ve got back into doing a bit of road riding during lockdown after a ten-year hiatus), or would the hardtail be worth taking instead, for any bridleways? Looks like the bouncy bike would definitely be overkill.

    Any local knowledge greatly appreciated.

    Fanks

    Premier Icon martinhutch
    Full Member

    From the door – road bike.
    There is some riding in the Preseli Hills but that breaks your no travel rules.

    Personally I wouldn’t bother, just head off to the beach nice and early with some beers!

    Premier Icon trailwagger
    Free Member

    This is what gravel bikes are made for 😉

    Premier Icon Alex
    Full Member

    We’re not long back from there. Road/Gravel for sure. Apparently some nutters do ride the coastal path in the dark/early mornings but it wouldn’t be for me. It’s *quite* exposed and obviously extremely cheeky.

    Was super busy on the main roads as well but looks plenty of options to get off the main tracks.

    Premier Icon Esme
    Full Member

    I wouldn’t bother taking any sort of bike (except maybe a fatty). There are so many lovely beaches and walks to keep you occupied for a week.

    And you must take a boat trip out to the Bitches!

    Premier Icon binners
    Full Member

    Personally I wouldn’t bother, just head off to the beach nice and early with some beers!

    Worry not, my friend… this will ba accounting for the majority of the week. I was just thinking of a few leisurely morning jaunts to work up a thirst 🙂

    That and coastal walks with Mrs Binners

    My old hardtail is set up as a commuter at the moment, with an old school 3×9 gearing and Small Block 8 summer tyres on it. I was just wondering if there was enough bridleway stuff for this to get the nod over the road bike? The road bike is still a novelty at the moment and after ten years of mountain bikes, like riding a magic carpet. It’s still only been out local…

    Premier Icon ElShalimo
    Free Member

    Grrrrrrrrravel bike will be ideal as some of the roads are crap and there are lots of tracks to explore.

    You can do a really nice loop from Solva to St Davids to St Justinian’s to Abereiddi and back past the old airfield and woollen mill

    PS there used to be some water buffalo in the fields on the St Davids to St Justinians road

    Premier Icon binners
    Full Member

    Great stuff. Thanks for the words of wisdom.

    That looks like a nice loop ElShalimo

    Premier Icon molgrips
    Free Member

    Road all the way. Driving around the scenery inland can be bleak, but explore the lanes by bike and there are lots of little deep valleys full of misty gnarled old woods with ancient churches and stuff. And some pokey little steep climbs that are just long enough to be fun without being too hard (for me at least!)

    Big tyres always useful, but I did it on 23c and it wasn’t too bad.

    Be sure to wave as you pass my house on the way.

    Premier Icon jedi
    Free Member

    I’ll be in St Davids Friday til Mon. No bike just paddle boarding, kayaks and body boarding

    Premier Icon bigdaddy
    Free Member

    Another vote for road bike here – we go most years on hols, mtb isn’t worth it, but the road riding is beautiful. As I’m from Surrey it’s sooo quiet on those little roads and Molgrip’s description is spot on. I did the tour of Pembs route last year and it tough!

    Premier Icon jonostevens
    Full Member

    We stayed in Solva last year. I took my Croix de Fer and tended to head west in parallel to the main A487.

    There are lots of little bays, beaches and ports to ride down to. Porthgain, Abereiddy, St Justinian’s, Porthclais, St Non’s and Caerfai are all lovely.

    Coffee and cake at the Shed in Porthgain is ace.

    Recommend a trip to the Bug Farm and Grub Kitchen too. The mealworm and cricket pakora is excellent. 🙂

    Not sure if you can see this, but pics here if so:
    https://www.strava.com/activities/2614605440
    https://www.strava.com/activities/2611975970

    Premier Icon rockhopper70
    Free Member

    We are heading there too on Saturday, likewise, can’t wait. Never done that part of wales before and just looking for those fabled wide expanses of beach to walk barefoot on with the little pooch.

    Premier Icon ElShalimo
    Free Member

    Visit Melin Tregwynt if you can – only traditional Welsh woollen Weavers left there

    Premier Icon mboy
    Free Member

    Just got back from Pembrokeshire, spent the last 3 days working along the South Coast of Wales, rode Pembrey Forest Park on my XC bike last night including a ride along the beach. Anyway…

    Gravel Bike… I don’t have one, but if I was spending a lot of time in Pembrokeshire riding, I would have one very soon! The off road isn’t really challenging enough for a Mountain Bike, the on road can be rougher than a lot of roadies are used to. Can imagine a Gravel Bike would be a lot of fun round there!

    Premier Icon Bikingcatastrophe
    Free Member

    Depends whereabouts in Solva you are staying but you could be in the part that means a steep hill out in either direction from the front door! 🙂 It’s a lovely little place but there’s not an awful lot to do in Solva itself. Lovely part of the country though – we will be heading to Pembrokeshire on Saturday for a couple of weeks. First week staying in Trefin with likely a fair amount of time at Whitesands. And a lot of ice cream from St Davids.

    Premier Icon gnusmas
    Full Member

    Can’t help with what bike, but if anyone that’s down this way wants a cuppa and I’m available, I’m not too far away in Carmarthen.

    Premier Icon vdubber67
    Free Member

    Definitely road bike. The Preseli Hills are boggy and dull….

    Premier Icon BigJohn
    Full Member

    We’re currently in Lee, North Devon with our 3 children, their kids and partners. Mrs BigJohn took her ebike and I took a hardtail with what used to be called semi slicks. Perfect for riding up the perpendicular lanes to Woolacombe and Ilfracombe and a bit of off piste and wet sand stuff too.

    Premier Icon branes
    Full Member

    Yeah – back from there last week. Road bike deffo. Climb up onto top of Preselli Hills is good, then down via Cwm Gwaun. Overall though it’s a bit of a meh plateau imo. Never seen less potholes though – I rode plenty of lanes and didn’t see any big holes. Saw a couple of bridle/byways near Solva, but not enough to be bothering with a gravel bike really.

    Premier Icon mrhoppy
    Full Member

    Road bike for sure. And a good ride would be to head down towards Newgale to the ice cream farm.

    No idea if the riding is good but the destination. 👍

    Premier Icon burko73
    Full Member

    Not just melyn tregwent but the Solva woolen mill is nice too. Up one of those little valleys up stream from solva.

    I’d take gravel bike, that’s my usual choice for that area.

    Unfortunately both our trips were cancelled this yr! Might pop down in camper next week. Keep us updated on how busy it is!

    Premier Icon binners
    Full Member

    Afternoon all. I just thought I’d pop back on the thread to say a thank you for the advice. The road bike was definitely the right call. I got a couple of lovely rides in on traffic-free little lanes, calling in at various places. The road surfaces were all fine too. Whoever was saying the roads weren’t great clearly hasn’t ridden round East Lancs. All in all thoroughly enjoyable.

    Its a stunningly beautiful part of the world, and as usual, being on a bike is the best way to see it

    Heres the obligatory pictures of my bike leaning against things

    Premier Icon Alex
    Full Member

    Looks a good trip that Binners. Such a fab part of the world. I’m defo taking a bike next time.

    Premier Icon Cheezpleez
    Full Member

    Nice! I’m off there tomorrow. I’ve been just about every year for the last three decades and I’ll be taking my CX bike for some loops between Fishguard, St David’s, Preselis and maybe down to Dale. Can’t wait, despite the iffy forecast. 😀

    Premier Icon mrhoppy
    Full Member

    Don’t want a photo of what it’s leaning against in the 2nd pic thanks all the same.

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