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MTB Staycation | Best bits of Coed y Brenin

Words by Will Crump

on 14/06/2021 12:30:00

MTB-Staycation-Coed-y-brenin

Find your adventure... With Staycations on the cards for many of us this year, we have decided to find some of the best Road, Mountain, Gravel and Leisure cycling routes and Locations around the UK that provide you with stunning scenery and a sense of freedom! This week, Ed from Pedal MTB will be showing fellow Rutland Cycling staff member, Luke everything that Coed y Brenin trail centre has to offer! By taking in a plethora of routes (from blues to blacks) you can really test out your MTB skills whilst taking in spectacular welsh scenery.

MTB-Staycation-Coed-y-brenin

Coed y Brenin… a well respected and renowned trail centre, known for being gnarly to all Mountain bikers, located within Snowdonia National Park in the heart of Wales. What better place to take your Mountain bike? With constant access to phenomenal Welsh terrain, it’s hard not to indulge yourself in these trails… that's why it’s one of my all time favourite places to ride!

Luckily for us, we had Ed from Pedal MTB, take us on a really gratifying circuit that took in some of the most infamous trails at Coed y Brenin all whilst giving us some helpful coaching along the way to help us become better riders! At Coed y Brenin, there are routes, loops and trails dedicated to riders of all abilities as well as a skills loop at the start to either get warmed up on or for if you want to refine your skills. At the main car park as well, riders have all the amenities they could possibly need before, during and after a day of shredding. Some of which include: Water refill taps, toilets, Visitors centre and Bike hire.

Our Route-

Discipline: Mountain Cycling

Route Distance: 8 Miles

Difficulty rating: Beginner | Intermediate | Difficult

Equipment that helped us along the way:

  • - Veloforte energy bars
  • - Endura MT500 Clothing
  • - DMR Vault V2
  • - Dakine 5L Hip pack
  • - ODI Lock on grips

The Route -

Best bits of 'Brenin

MTB-Coed-y-brenin

As we wanted to showcase the best bits of ‘Brenin, we asked Ed to take us on a custom loop that consisted of three punchy climbs followed by three completely different yet exciting descents! Straight out of the visitors centre, we had entered our first climb up a fire road to get us out of the valley… that's one way to get your legs spinning and warmed up I suppose! However, we were casually chatting amongst ourselves and got into a constant rhythm of leg sinning so the climb was over in no time.

As we peaked at the top of the climb we were met by a striking view that looked over Snowdonia National park… the view just went on for miles and miles making the climb and the ride worth it already!

MTB-Coed-y-brenin

Enough of the view, after a short ride along the ridge we found our first section of trail that admittedly we sessioned a few times so we could do the descent justice on camera and it was genuinely so fun! Rated as a blue trail, it consisted of really nice flowing berms that have been well maintained and a few jumps (which are very easily rollable!) The layout is what I really enjoyed, I’ve never ridden a section of blue trail quite like this before so it already gave me a sense of achievement!

No time for a breather! It's straight into our downhill stint. Taking it old school, the next section traverses its way through the dense forest which has a few technical sections as you would imagine with a few really neat kicker jumps built into it. Luckily, when we visited, the sun was shining which really lit up the inside of the forest making it almost magical as you hammered your way through it!

MTB-Coed-y-brenin

Once you’re back into the open, you aren’t done yet! You’ll find yourself overlooking a beautiful little stream and set of waterfalls but you won’t have time to admire them until you’re down there! I’ll set the scene for you… lovely scenery, but you’re literally riding a narrow path... on a cliff. If that wasn’t spicy enough for you already, you’ve got to tackle some lovely rocky drop offs that aren’t for the faint heart - we’ve entered the black trails.

After that short and spicy section of trails, it's time to head straight into the next climb which is a sharp one that will definitely get your legs and lungs working. Unlike the first climb, the surface of this one consisted of loose rocks meaning that you have to be really on the ball with your power transfer, body positioning and energy levels.

MTB-Coed-y-brenin

After a small break at the top, we started our descent down the next section of red trail which consisted of a longer free flowing singletrack route with a couple of awesome rocky drop offs that you can either send or just roll. After popping out of that red trail we pedalled straight into a section of the minotaur trail (which is the blue one at Coed y Brenin) and that was a lovely switch up of riding! We started off cruising round flowing berms before eventually hitting a double jump which again is also rollable!

MTB-Coed-y-brenin

We then climbed up our last fire road which was a long one but definitely worth it for the descent! The descent is called “the beginning of the end” which sounds traumatic but it’s a really nice way to drop you back into the main car park and trail centre hub! At the top it starts off with some flowing singletrack through the forest before spitting you out into the open. You’re then met with some rocky rollers which you just have to trust yourself on and they will be fine! The last little bit of trail crosses the upper car park before sending you down a technical section of tree roots that you have to navigate through before you finish your ride!

The Bike -

Santa Cruz Hightower C

Santa-Cruz-Hightower-C

After only just receiving this bike, Coed y Brenin ended up being the first place where I could properly test it out! Immediately, I felt comfortable on the bike as it just devoured whatever trails you throw at it thanks to 150mm of travel and 29” wheels which kept it stable at all times over the rougher sections. Admittedly, I have slightly customised it with some Burgtec products so she looks the part at the trail centre and she definitely is a head turner! Overall, this bike is just good at tackling anything and everything you throw at it!

The Kit -

MTB-Coed-y-brenin

For my ride around Brenin, I was using a 5L Dakine Hotlaps hip pack to carry all my equipment which was really useful as I could store so many essential items without even feeling like I was wearing it. One thing in my bag that definitely helped me out along my ride was the Veloforte energy bars which helped me tackle some of the steep fire roads!

As for my clothing, I was kitted out in Endura MT500 jersey and trousers which were incredibly comfortable throughout the ride… even in the hot sun! Recording my ride was Wahoo’s latest GPS Watch, the Element Rival, which again outdid itself even in the middle of the welsh countryside!

Wahoo-Elemnt-Rival-GPS-Multisport-Watch

Wahoo Elemnt Rival GPS Multisport Watch

Wahoo, leading manufacturer of indoor trainers and cycle computers, now entering to world of the GPS watch with the Elemnt Rival Multisport GPS watch, giving you a seamless performance advantage across all disciplines.

  • Weight: 53 grams
  • Screen Resolution: x 240 pixels
  • Lens Material: Gorilla Glass
  • Bezel Material: Ceramic
  • Case Material: Nylon Polymer
  • Water Rating: 5 ATM
  • Navigating systems: GPS & GLONASS
£349.99 - Shop now

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