Brecon gap ride tomorrow

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  • Brecon gap ride tomorrow
  • sambuka
    Member

    Hi – we’re going to do the gap ride tomorrow, does anyone have any tips / route variations / pub recommendations / any other useful recent knowledge to share?

    Thanks!

    IanW
    Member

    One of my favourites rides, just the right amount of distance v difficulty and a couple of pubs at the start/finsh.

    Highlights for me are the Glacial valley view and long decent just after the gap itself.

    sambuka
    Member

    Last time I did this I started in Brecon as per the guides on the mtb brecon site, but I was thinking of starting in Talybont this time… Any thoughts?

    Premier Icon sheck
    Subscriber

    Always done it from Talybont, but then for me, that means 10 mins each way less in the car!

    rewski
    Member

    I started from Brecon going clockwise, more road than expected. Just before you go down the gap itself maybe hike up to the top of the peak on your right, great view up there and fun descent. I’ve heard they’ve sanitised the gap rocky descent, is it true?

    Premier Icon booktownman
    Subscriber

    Howdo Sambuka – it’s a case of whether you want the long, boring ride along the canal at the start or end of your day!

    Variation (different from the MTB Brecon Beacons route, but you may know this already) – instead of following the Taff Trail right up to Taf Fechan forest, head on up the Brinore Tramway to gain the pass at Pen Bwlch Glasgwm then drop down to Cwm Callan forest near the Dolygaer outdoor education centre.

    Make sure you don’t miss the turning bearing off right after Pen Bwlch Glasgwm – last time I was up there they had resurfaced to fill all the ruts in and the way was a little vague, should have seen some traffic by now though.

    Another little variation: in Taf Fechan forest, instead of following the bridleway on the map, stay on the forest road that forks off right. On the map it looks like it goes to a dead end, but there’s a fun, rocky chute at the end of it that comes out at the gorge crossing by the filter house – you can see the trail quite easily on Google earth.

    Hope that makes sense! Have fun – things are drying out a little now so it should be good.

    Rob
    http://www.wild-rides.co.uk

    chum3
    Member

    I did the Gap a few years ago, and was a bit underwhelmed. A section of canal path, a long (uneventful) up, followed by a long down (which while technical at the top, didn’t give me the reward I was hoping for)

    I get the feeling I might not have got the most out of it though, reading the posts above.

    Premier Icon welshfarmer
    Subscriber

    I was about to post with some tips but Rob (Booktownman) beat me to it. That is exactly the route I would recommend. Start/finish in Talybont.

    Premier Icon FuzzyWuzzy
    Subscriber

    I enjoyed it but it’s not something I’d want to repeat in it’s entirety really, I’d only want to do it on a warm summer’s day to :p

    kedmun
    Member

    Start/finish in Talybont and visit the Star – proper good pub!

    http://www.starinntalybont.co.uk

    dragon
    Member

    Technical at the top? It’s not really. It’s a nice ride and everyone should do it once, but lets be honest its nothing to get too excited about.

    mrmo
    Member

    Of the two routes I have done in that area much preferred this one*. The Gap is nice in a summers afternoon sort of way, As someone who much prefers to go up than down I just found it a bit simple on the climbing front, and not really demanding much technic or fitness.

    *http://www.mtbbreconbeacons.co.uk/hubs/talgarth/grwyne-fawr-reservoir

    creamegg
    Member

    probably been mentioned already but start / finish at talybont. Choice of at least two pubs. You can park in a layby just over the canal.

    Not much to this ride in terms of technical features other than a rocky descent from the top which I love, but its not particularly hard. Can get fun if you go through the loose rocky section as speed. Just a nice day out on the bike, enjoy

    Dickyboy
    Member

    if you are going clockwise, make sure you keep to the rocky path to the right (bridleway) when you’ve completed the descent from the gap – always makes me giggle 🙂

    scant
    Member

    the gap descent used to be slightly technical at the top of DH, in more recent years most of the loose rock has been removed.
    theres still small amounts of snow around that area & as sections of the gap descent are normally wet in summer, expect it to be very wet at the moment.

    I’d never say the gap route is technicaly hard or in trail terms that rewarding, if you’re unfit the long drag climb up talybont & over the moors will feel like hard work. nothing steep, just an extended climb.
    personally I think the best & most rewarding part of the gap route are the views on clear sunny days

    there are significantly better, more technically challenging & fun, bordering on epic trails around this part of the brecon beacons, but as none of them are strictly legal, best to keep that as local info 😉

    sambuka
    Member

    Thanks all

    Looking at the OS map of the gap in the peaks, it looks like there’s a trail that runs down the ridge to the east side of the Cwm Cynwyn valley (the long valley descent after the gap). Has anyone ridden this? I wonder if it’s less rocky than the valley descent…

    sambuka
    Member

    Scant can you share anything by email?

    taxi25
    Member

    I’m a fan of the gap ride, its just a great place to be especially on a clear day. As said not the most technical ride but good enough and some wonderfull views 😀
    This is probably the classic route from Talybont. its worth looking for the Bridleways after the Gap descent.

    http://www.strava.com/activities/77362467

    dragon
    Member

    Agree with mrmo that the Grwyne Fawr reservoir is much better. I did this back to back with the Gap ride over a weekend one November on a fully rigid bike with canti’s, oh good times 🙂

    Scary to think I first rode the Gap over 20 years ago as a 15 year old having ridden up from Cardiff on the Taff Trail. 😀 But God does it make me feel old!!

    sambuka
    Member

    Loved the Gryne Fawr ride, we did it from Crickhowell , a great day out indeed

    Premier Icon Alex
    Subscriber

    We rode Y Das/Gryne Fawr/etc route a few weeks ago from Crickhowell. I’ve ridden this six or seven times and I have NEVER seen it so wet. It was a heck of a slog. Can’t imagine it’s dried up much. If you look at the very bottom of this set http://www.flickr.com/photos/alexleigh/sets/72157606143618696/ you’ll see what I mean!

    It is a fantastic ride tho.

    Premier Icon booktownman
    Subscriber

    Grwyne Fawr will be minging wet now, especially the swamp up beyond the Hermitage.

    The ridge you mention is, ahem, footpath – it might not be one to do on a weekend of good weather, if you know what I mean!

    If you’re looking for an interesting, varied ride not too far away on ground that has held up well in the recent weather, try this, expertly guided just this last night by Welshfarmer! http://www.strava.com/activities/118067535

    If you ask nicely he might suggest some extras to make it a longer jaunt!

    Scant – can you privately share any cheekies with me as well?! I know of one good naughty one up that way, but its always good to try new stuff!

    Premier Icon booktownman
    Subscriber

    @Alex – mind if I nab some of your Black Mtns pics to use on haycycling.org – the Hay Bike Fest website?

    @Sambuka – check out the bike fest programme and think about coming back end of April!

    Premier Icon Alex
    Subscriber

    I was thinking more this one 😉


    Flashbacks.. by Alex Leigh, on Flickr

    @booktownman – sure. Hope to get up there this year.

    Premier Icon booktownman
    Subscriber

    Thanks, I’ll make sure you’re credited for anything we use.

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