Bike park Wales!
I’m local and have been struggling to think of a decent camping spot near by, this might be worth a try, Abardare’s a bit lively of a night out, I’d be tempted to get beers from Asda on the way to the sitePosted 4 years agocraig5Subscriber
Can’t wait. I’m booked in on the uplift middle of sept. just starting physio on my wrist after big off 8wk ago however and I will be going down the day after a stag night in bath. So I’m gona take it easy. Just hope my wrist holds up. Didn’t last 5 min at lee quarry last week with a 661 brace. Fingers crossedPosted 4 years ago
Just got back and buzzing but also very knackered. Really good day out with some mates on bikes.
The good points:
Loads of trails of varying ability and style – some tight singletrack which feels quite natural to some bermy swoopy stuff – something for everything. The trails are definitely harder than your average graded trails – except the blacks which I expected a bit more from – except for Half cut which had us all on our arses!
Loads of people there but didn’t feel like I saw anyone when out on the trails.
There were some real challenges on the trails which I look forward to spending time on in the future.
Enough for a days riding – the variety of trails made it great to mix it up – with us splitting up so some could ride blacks while others rode blues or reds and still meeting back down the bottom at a similar time.
The bad points / points for improvement
The slow uplift turnaround killed the vibe for me – spent far too long waiting for the uplift or waiting for the uplift to set off – we managed 7 uplifts today (we missed one). At one point it was 3 runs in 2 hours. We worked out that if we had paid per run it would have cost us £33 versus £30 upfront (including £5 entry). Mainly down to the drivers checkign everything too much and I’m sure they’ll get this sorted in time.
They could do with another climb on the north side (right hand side/otherside to the other climb) of the site as if I went back I’d either want to session the blacks or ride it like a trail centre but having one climb puts me off as I’m not sure I could keep doing it again and again. Another climb to mix it up would be nice to see and then I’d probably XC it. At the moment the slow uplift means I’d either ride to the top and back down a couple of times and then maybe an uplift or two or I’d take the uplift – pay for a trip to the top then session different sections on the way down to make the most of the one uplift.
Some signs next to the big features would be nice to warn first timers as I saw a few people (inc me and my mates) hit some stuff which wasn’t how we expected – namely the gap jump on Enter the dragon which looked like a table but wasn’t. I’d normally take it easy but with the slow uplift it made us want to hoon it down to see if we could get the bus as quick as possible.
On the whole it’s got some great trails, a load of potential for the future and I can’t wait to get back to ride it again. Big respect to the team up there as I can see this being a major destination for the future. Will be interesting to ride in the wet.
Oh, and another thing – they ran out of ketchup!!! 😉Posted 4 years ago
My quickest ride to the top on the fire road took me 35 minutes.
I did it 4 times,maybe could have squeezed 2 more in.
It’s pretty heavy at times.
Loads of folk at the trailhead but no-one overtook me and i overtook no-one! Wasn’t like Cannock where everyones barging everyone!
I loved it.Posted 4 years agoSOAPMember
Was there today and its a great place and will be evan better once you get to know the trails.Posted 4 years ago
Took 30 minutes to ride up the road and I’d say it was Ok, did it 3 times Just spinning the granny.
Think the single track route would take to much out of you.
Blues are super fast and flow really good,
Reds are a bit more tech tighter singletrack.
Rode a little black section that was tricky.
I too enjoyed not catching, and not being caught by people – even though the car park was busy the trails felt quiet all day.
People were all friendly and chatty on the climb which helped, and the locals who’d been up there all weekend were a good source of information.
Bits that would make it better (and aren’t the fault of the owners!)
DH riders pushing up the trails – not cool when you are coming in hot and are confronted by someone in PJ’s and a behemoth walking up the blue trail
People stopping on the ‘line’ mid trail to wait for a mate
Everything else was great IMO
The food at the cafe was great, quick service too when I went in at 2ish.
I took a 120mm FS, I don’t think I’d have needed it on the blues, but I wouldn’t want to do some of the rockier bits of Rim Dinger on a hard tail!
I’d like to have got to a black trail, but the combination of my brake pads wearing out on the previous run & “just one more run” syndrome would probably have left in Cardiff A&EPosted 4 years agojoefmMember
You won’t be riding up n a dh bike! It’s not a gentle climb at all. Don’t need a dh bike except for one of the blacks and bits of that would be hard work on a dh bike. Not much left of the old dragon track either.
Good day on Saturday…. Did five runs and was prett knackered. Could have done another maybe. Hopefully they bring in a trail centre style loop as its all quite straight up and down so you get bored of the same up. Think ill try and book an uplift as it is such a gravity based spot.
Think my favourite was the furthest on the left red. Good mix of single track and steep stuff
Well done to the team.Posted 4 years ago
Yeah,that red on the far left (wibblywobbly) was awesome, including Rim Dinger which really is a rim dinger. Funniest moment was chatting to Anna after she had to deal with someone moaning he’d punctured on Rim Dinger – there was a certain irony to his complaint.Posted 4 years agoTinnersMember
Wow. I really enjoyed that. First ride out for me in a very long time after breaking my back, so very out of shape and carrying more weight than normal – neither of these things presented a problem cycling up the fire road. I took my two sons who also thoroughly enjoyed (one of them on a non disc brake bike). I’ve heard the Aberdare MTB have given a lot of their time volunteering when it was built and I’d like to give a big thank you to them and to the team for creating such a fantastic site. The other thing to note is that there was a very friendly atmosphere there, from the guy that warned us about the speed of the runs when we were leaving the car park to the couple who stopped to check that my lad was ok when he (inevitably) came off. What a great community of people mountain bikers are.Posted 4 years ago
As a (mostly) mincer who prefers XC natural trails, I loved it. I’ve missed “Penhydd” at Afan and I thought that the blue trails recreated the “rollercoaster” feel that Afan used to have – but much faster and quite skitty on the gravel on dry trails (and mud tyres….). Superb job though. It was packed (car park and reception building) but the trails felt quiet. We found it a little daunting at the start – lots of portly gents with full body armour, neck braces etc and it’s a little disconcerting signing a waiver and riding past a helipad on the way up – wondered what I was letting myself in for (or more importantly, what I was leading my lads into), but needn’t have worried.
I’ve you’ve not been yet, you’re in for a treat. I thought it was different and “better” than Afan – faster and quieter. It’ll be even better as it matures and looks less man made.
A big thank you to all involved. After a summer of paying to get into various attractions, £5 seems ludicrously cheap for such fun and the food smelt delicious too (going to try that next time).
Finally, if you’ve got a towbar mounted bike carrier, make extra sure that it’s firmly fixed in place because the drive out of the carpark is quite bumpy and it gets shaken around quite a lot.wreckerMember
It really is brilliant. Great buzz around the place. I enjoyed dai hard very much.Posted 4 years ago
The blue is very much trail centre grading, but I like how its very suitable for beginners.
It’s early days, but they really need to do something about the food 😐 maybe send the catering manager to the drop off to see how its done?valleydaddySubscriber
Thank you Tinners as the founder of Aberdare MTB I am very proud of what we volunteers have acheived of course there were professional trail building teams involved Sean and Rowan plus their employees but the sheer amount of hours put in by some members of our group is truly amazing.
Remember this is dream of 2 couples, Martin and Anna, Rowan and Liz without their ability to finance and attract grants and fund matching and ultimately corporate input this project would never have happened
I hope if you do come to Bike Park Wales please look out for the Aberdare MTB guys we are a really friendly bunch
Thanks again Tinners 😀Posted 4 years agowreckerMember
Gethin used to be best for DH bikes back in the day, in folks opinion with the Bikepark, is a 160mm type bike better to take than a dh bike?
The 160mm bike I reckon. The old dragon trail is now enter the dragon, and the only trail they reckon you need a big bike for.
Is it easy to find?Posted 4 years ago
Yep. J32 off the M4, head north up the A470 and it’s just off a roundabout. Signposted Gethin woods.mikey74Member
Hmmmmm I was going to go there in November, when I am down that way, but it sounds like they have taken it too far away from the original DH and basically turned it into another Afan. There doesn’t appear to be too much in the way of steep, technical riding.
Surely they would have been better off creating one or two pure DH tracks to go alongside the more xc-style trails in order to appeal to everyone.
I only have a 180mm Morewood Kalula (other than my road bike) and tend to prefer riding DH tracks.
Oh, and what is it with people standing in the middle of the trail? Every video clip I have seen has this and is another factor putting me off going there.
One other thing: The tunnel. Is it me or is that exposed far edge of the tunnel entrance right on the line out of the berm and a recipe for disaster?
If I have misinterpreted anything I have seen, then I apologise. Videos can be a little misleading.Posted 4 years ago
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