South Wales Gravel

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  • South Wales Gravel
  • shanta
    Member

    Hi. I will be staying down at the Holiday inn express Newport (NP10) for the weekend im a few weeks and wondered if there is gravel routes i could do from around there. Looking for about 20/30 miles i guess on a hardtail or maybe cx bike. Ive heard about stuff around Sirhowy but cant find any gpx files of loops. Routes with gravel, fireroad, single track ideally and minimal if any tarmac. Can anyone help? Thanks

    markrh
    Member

    If you take the gravel bike, the canal that leads up to Cwmcarn is not far from where you are staying, you could jump onto the towpath (mainly tarmac though) and head up the valley to Cwmcarn trail centre where there loads of fireroads to go at and a decent cafe to.

    Premier Icon SaxonRider
    Subscriber
    shanta
    Member

    I should also say i dont have to start from the hotel i coukd park up somewhere if it gives more options and cuts out tarmac.

    Premier Icon dove1
    Subscriber

    There isn’t much gravel riding to be had in Newport unfortunately.
    You can ride up to Cwmcarn easily from the HI Express but it’s about 8.5-9 miles on road, cycle path and canal path – all tarmac apart from a couple of short sections. You are better off jumping in the car and driving up to Cwmcarn and riding from there.
    Once at Cwmcarn you could ride the Twrch Trail if you are on your hard tail (Caffal is still not fully open) or if you take the CX bike follow the fire road up to the top and then make your way up on to the ridge and along to the iron age fort site on Twmbarlwm. Great views from up there if the weather is good.

    shedbrewed
    Member

    From fourteen locks Newport head north on canal path to cwmbranistan. Bear off the towpath around the old Cross Keys pub up the roads towards the Queen pub. Follow that road all the way to the church in the square and Blaen Bran Woods. Through the kissing gate and follow the forestry road up until you come to the top end of the woods and another green kissing gate. Through and up and you’re heading for the ridge between Mynydd Twyn Glas and Mynydd Maen.
    Follow to jeep track through the bogs til you come to a green metal stile on your right. It’s on the edge of the conifers. Over that and you’re halfway round the Twrch. Ride the Twrch loop then home is reverse of going out. But downhill. Cx or ht fine

    Premier Icon dove1
    Subscriber

    I have a 40km route that takes in most of what shedbrewed outlines above but in the opposite direction. I can send you the GPX file if you want, @shanta.
    It starts on the canal up to Cwmcarn, fireroad to join the Twch trail near Bishop’s Finger, Airstream and then up on to the ridge. Along to the iron age fort, double back along the ridge all the way to the transmitter station (Mynydd Henllys – Mynydd Maen – Mynydd Twyn-glas) then drop down through Blaen Bran Woods. From there it’s road through Cwmbran to join the canal down to Newport and back to the start.

    shanta
    Member

    @dove1 cheers gpx would be great.

    Premier Icon dove1
    Subscriber

    No problem. I’ll send it to you this evening when I get home from work.

    Well if you have a car then you have loads of options. FOD isn’t far away, Brecon Beacons, Afan, Cwmcarn. I would get on ride with gps. Search routes from your location and 20 mile radius and use a keyword of gravel or CX. You will find tons

    Dave j
    Member

    Loads of Forestry tracks around Llanwonno.

    shanta
    Member

    @trailwagger RWGPS was the first place i looked and didnt seem to turn up much at first look. Will have another look.

    shanta
    Member

    @ dove1 cheers.

    Premier Icon welshfarmer
    Subscriber

    Wentwood could be another option

    Combine with Chepstow Woods and lower Wye valley for a mega tour with some great singletrack if you desire. Though it is easy to do a 20 mile loop around/trough Wentwood with tons of easy or hard single track if you desire and still never ride the same track twice.

    shanta
    Member

    @welshfarmer cheers, any gpx for that as im not from tge area and dont want to waste time “exploring” really.

    Premier Icon zilog6128
    Subscriber

    I have a 40km route that takes in most of what shedbrewed outlines above but in the opposite direction. I can send you the GPX file if you want,

    @dove1 Would be great if you could send me the GPX too please, I’m up that way quite often.

    Just don’t forget to call in at the Tiny Rebel brewery on the way back, only about 5 mins from that hotel, great beer!

    Premier Icon dove1
    Subscriber

    @zilog6128 – no problem.

    The route goes within half a mile of Tiny Rebel Brewery so no worries there! 🙂
    It’s all downhill from the brewery back to the HI Express so that’s even better.

    Premier Icon zilog6128
    Subscriber

    nice one, ta!!

    Premier Icon linusr
    Subscriber

    There might be something of interest on the gpx tracks here https://cycleclassics.co.uk/cardiff-roubaix/ Also search for Cardiff Roubaix on Ridewithgps (It includes routes near Newport).

    Premier Icon molgrips
    Subscriber

    There’s plenty, but you’ll have a better time if you have a touch more rubber and can handle some rocky tracks. Loads of stuff. 30 miles would cover some of it. What kind of trail can you handle?

    There are some lovely mixed on-off road routes you could do. This is pretty close to my house btw so let me know if you need a guide. I’ll be on an MTB though.

    Premier Icon molgrips
    Subscriber

    Further to shedbrewed/dove1’s ride I would not do Twrch simply to retrace my steps; I’d come down through Pontymister and pick up the canal to bring me back to Newport that way.

    I’d class that as an MTB ride not gravel though – rubber required.

    If you drive anywhere you will pass a load of really nice trails in the car, so a bit of a waste IMO 🙂

    Premier Icon molgrips
    Subscriber

    EDIT just had a look, my route down to Pontymister from the top of Cwmcarn is rocky, but you could take another one down slightly further to the west which looks like normal fire-road.

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