afan this weekend – which trails?

  • This topic has 21 replies, 14 voices, and was last updated 3 years ago by  kiksy.
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  • afan this weekend – which trails?
  • Off to Afan this weekend for a very rare biking weekend. I reckon it’s been 4 years since i’ve been to Afan. Since i’ve been there it looks like there’s a new trail called Blade and a new bike park?

    We’re staying at Bryn Bettws which i’m told is right by the bike park.

    A friend of mine thought the blade trail wasn’t bothering with. Nothing in the way of good descents? What does everyone else think?

    kiksy
    Member

    I did W2 and Blade last Sunday. Hadn’t done Blade for a little while, its longer than Whites or YWall, but not quite as long/as much climbing as doing the full W2.

    on Blade, Ghosttrain is probably my favourite trail at Afan, very natural and interesting closely followed by the complete Rock/Happy Life descent which is a full on blast with some drops and rocky sections.

    Blade uses the same initial climb as Whites,

    Cheers. So do you think it’s worth doing Blade then?

    I was thinking Blade or Penhyyd on the sunday (w2 on saturday)

    Premier Icon Northwind
    Subscriber

    I still haven’t done the Wall but of the rest, Blade was my favourite by some way, and Penhydd least. (we did Blue Scar straight after Penhydd and it was so much better IMO!)

    JackHammer
    Member

    Blade is the best trail there in my opinion, but it’s absolutely brutal. The singletrack through the woods is immense and the final rocky descent is awesome. I havent done it on a hardtail yet and my mate who has wont do it again on a HT.

    I did W2 last weekend on a hardtail, my back is still aching today haha, still a brilliant day out. Stopped at the Glyncorwg cafe for a sarnie before doing the second half.

    Penhydd is ok, much more fun on a hardtail than it was on my 150mm full suss. Definitely worth doing if you have some energy left or as a warm up if you’re mega fit.

    Excellent cheers.

    Certainly tempted by the blade trail. Penhydd does look quite tame

    Premier Icon bikebouy
    Subscriber

    Any of this lot doable on my CXer?

    I’ve been meaning to go there for sometime, always got the impression that if you need a lift up its all just a bit too 160mm full N’duro stylee..

    orange16
    Member

    We did Blade on Saturday in biblical rainfall, best trail at Afan and the rain added a certain dimension. The technical stuff exposed the limitations of shorter travel suspension and we destroyed our disc pads on the downhills. Recommended…

    ferrals
    Member

    Not really bikebuoy, I get rattled on my xc hardtail. Blue scar would be fine, other than that would be a waste of effort and true rims!

    Premier Icon bikebouy
    Subscriber

    Cheers for the info.

    I’ll cross (cough) it off the list then 😀

    I thought the final descent on Blade was one of the most fun trails I’ve ever ridden. Spitfire ate it up, would not have been as much fun on a lesser full-sus or my hardtail.

    Max Wall
    Member

    I like Blade but that last descent nearly killed me! The old Whyte 19 wasnt the best bike to do that on the rest of the trail was fine hopefully my new Dartmoor will be a bit more gnar for the down bits!?!

    rob8624
    Member

    Don’t miss out Penhydd though, Sidewinder and Dead Sheep Gully are still epic!

    Premier Icon Kryton57
    Subscriber

    op, there’s me and a few others at Afan this weekend, riding W2 Saturday and Blade Sunday morning. What are riding, I’ll look out for you,

    zelak999
    Member

    I’d do Blade on first day then W2 on the second day.
    If you have a day 3 do Penhydd and blue scar although the final descents on Penhydd are a real anti climax.
    Blade is also one of my favourites, ghost train is awesome fun!

    bgascoyne
    Member

    interested in this topic…haven’t been to Afan for quite a few years (4 years) since my last disappointing trip there. used to love skyline but most of it was destroyed by the forestry work and they put in place some temp rubbish fire road route which was just crap. Sounds like it is much improved since then and might be worth a revisit. Can anyone who used to ride there years ago give some comparison – now vs say 5 years ago?

    rob8624
    Member

    It’s better, the trails are aging well, Whites/YWal feel almost natural in a way. Penhydd isn’t as good, apart from Dead Sheep/Sidewinder, but it is an excellent trail for beginners. Blade is a tad longer with a bit more climbing than the others, feels more XC to me apart from the final decent.

    I’ve ridden there for years and tend to just ride the best bits, it’s easy to do if you can read a map hehe! For example, park at Rhysylyn and take the first fire road upto the skills park, session that, then you can just ride over to whites and do black run/windy point, then come back and do 373/graveyard the Zig Zags.

    P-Jay
    Member

    I’ve never really gelled with the new Penhydd, the old one was one of my favorite trails and even though a lot of it is still there it’s lost it’s shine, the trees going hasn’t helped, it’s got good parts, but a lot of it now doesn’t flow – the trails are almost all rock now without the trees to hold the soil in place and it’s frustrating because the trails are very open so you want to pile on lots of speed but the surface holds you back, if it was more technical than it would be great, but it just feels like I’m going too slowly between the turns now whilst my hands get battered like I’m riding the bumps on The Pleney.

    Best way to ride Penhydd now IMO is ride to the top, desolation, Not so hidden Valley, then a quick shuffty along the fire road and down Blue Scar, it’s another low-tech trail as it’s a blue, but you can pile on loads of speed and then it’s great fun. I do miss dead sheep gully though, but it’s not enough to tempt me to ride the last section of bore-rock-slow.

    Hi Kryton,

    I’ll be riding a blue spesh pitch. There’s going to be 6 of us out. What are you riding?

    Premier Icon Kryton57
    Subscriber

    Ah too late – but I hope you enjoyed the amazing sunny weekend – tan lines restored!

    It’s was good, Calfail at Cwmcarn Friday afternoon, W2 with Penydd in the middle Saturday, and Blade Sunday. I have to say the middle trail on Blade (forget the name) was a slushy eroded mess but other than that lots of good riding was had.

    Wow.. what a weekend. Felt like I was in the alps! Definitely recommend staying at brynn Bettws cabins. It’s right next the wall trail, the bike park and 4x track.

    My mate brought his new bike – a santa cruz hightower in 29er mode. He was beasted after the morning so lent it to me to hit whites level in the afternoon. All i can say is Wow.. what an amazing bike. I was flying.

    Some pics

    kiksy
    Member

    I have to say the middle trail on Blade (forget the name) was a slushy eroded mess

    That’s Ghostrain. A highlight of the loop for me! but then maybe I’m just weird.

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