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Friday, 15 August 2014

BikePark Wales celebrates first anniversary with new trail open
On the 24th August 2014 BikePark Wales will be exactly one year old. A lot can happen in a year, ups, downs and everything in between. We’d be lying if we said it has been easy, but all of the best things in life are worth fighting for right?

We would like to thank every single customer that has visited the park this first year. We hope you have enjoyed your visits. Each and every one of you is helping to create a sustainable future for this amazing facility. Our ever expanding trail crew are flat out not only maintaining but also upgrading existing trails. Checkout the all new “Insufficient finds” trail as well as improvements on Zut Alors, Willy Waver and Enter the Dragon as well as a new start to Vicious Valley.

And now for the really exciting news, to celebrate our first birthday we will be opening the first of two completely new trails for 2014 on Sunday August 24th jump trail; this red graded trail is a work of art, each lip and landing sculpted with love and care from Welsh rock and dirt. Created as a collaboration between trail building company Back on Track and our own trail crew, A470 Line is set to be a new favourite for visitors to BikePark Wales from across the globe.

If you aren’t excited enough already, take a look at this short edit by Liam Murphy, the first in a new series of “BikePark Wales diaries” which will keep you up to date on happenings at BPW. This first episode features Trek World Racing rider Laurie Greenland shredding A470 Line in a recent test session.


The aptly named A470 line is the UK’s biggest and best A470 line will open on Sunday 24th August. We will also have many of our great sponsors in attendance to enjoy the weekend with us so stop by and say hello to the guys from Mercedes-Benz Vito Sport, Mojo/Fox,
Trek and Shimano as well as the guys from MBUK.

Thanks again to everyone for making our first year such a great one, this is just the beginning, there is plenty more still to come from BikePark Wales.

Build it and they will come

To book online and find out more visit https://www.bikeparkwales.com/uplift




Posted by hannaht at 10:20:22


Saturday, 09 August 2014

Your MTB related photos!
We are revamping the Centre pages on the mbwales.com website and on the look out for great Welsh mountain bike related images. If you have a photo you wouldn't mind us using with a credit please add it to the mbwales.com Flickr group. We're after any kind of image taken at a Welsh trail centre. Families, POV, big jumps, tasty food...anything.

Thanks and I look forward to seeing them!

Here's the Flickr group - https://www.flickr.com/groups/1841960@N23/


Posted by hannaht at 11:37:40


Friday, 01 August 2014

Trail Review: Blade Trail at Afan Forest
Trail of the month: Blade Trail
Difficulty level: Red / Difficult
Established: February 2014
Distance: 24km (with an additional 23km available if you incorporate the Skyline Loop)
Nearest Trail Centre: Glyncorrwg Mountain Bike Centre- Parking: At Glyncorrwg Mountain Bike Centre- Good place to refuel/eat: Skyline Café in the Centre
Most scenic spot: Check out the view as you emerge out of the tree after Twister.
Rider numbers: Over 5,000 since Feb with the busiest day counting 222!

Overview: The Blade trail is a fantastic addition to the Afan Forest Park trail network and provides the perfect addition to the already impressive array of trails.  With lots of great singletrack sections combined with some of the ‘classics’ like ‘Peregrine Ridge’ and ‘Jetlag’ it shares the same sheep track climb out of Glyncorrwg with the ‘White’s Level’ trail but then the Blade takes you out to higher and more remote areas as it twists and winds its way around the 24km Red graded loop. You finally hit the top when you look out over a spectacular view over wind turbines and rolling hills.

Crossing the fire road and starting the first descent is exciting, the trail immediately tells you it's slightly different and by the time you hit the trees you can tell you've signed up for something very special.  The tight technical trail through the trees is invigorating and provides a great challenge.
 

Once back in the familiar areas of the skyline trail you hit another of the great elements of the Blade Trail - optional lines.  You can follow Peregrine Ridge or The Rock to finish on either Happy Life or Jet Lag.  All the options are where the trail really makes it's name, there's loads of rock features, big berms, great singletrack and all on the side of the hill overlooking the valley.  The final leg back into the trail centre is quite the test with challenging rocky features that are going to leave you hanging on for dear life with a huge grin on your face.

Most technical section: Climbing wise it has to be Groovy Gully which tests most peoples climbing skills as it climbs it’s way through a steep sided gully about ¾ of the way round the trail. There are a some great technical descents but look out for ‘Ghost Train’ which is the section after the amazing views over the Brecon Beacons which gets pretty tight and requires good line choice. Both ’The Rock’ & ‘Happy life’ sections will have you thinking you’re in the Alps on a dry day with numerous rock steps and fantastic views but don’t take your eye off the trail! Most of the Blade trail descents are real benchmark Red grade (Difficult) and require a good amount of skill and confidence to ride well.


Summary: With some tough technical climbs and fast flowing descents it off­ers a fantastic day out for the more experienced rider which will test both your climbing and descending skills. The Blade Trail is the perfect evolution of trail design and an excellent addition to the existing routes. Trails don't get much better than this with it’s mixture of new skool trail design including huge berms, banks and swooping lines with more technical rocky obstacles.

Important Note:
Make sure you stick to the way marked trails as it now passes through the Pen y Cymoedd wind farm construction site.


Posted by hannaht at 11:03:19


Wednesday, 30 July 2014

Adventure X event at Coed y Brenin
The Rhinog Raptor Adventure X Race took place on July 13th 2014. Calling in at Coed Y Brenin it was set amidst the rugged beauty of the Snowdonia National Park. Steep climbs, wild terrain and all sorts of off road surfaces from fire roads to grassy singletrack made it a genuinely tough day out. The long route circumnavigates Rhinog Mountain Massif and is approximately 95% rideable, with one section which was a carry climb for most, if not all riders! Check out the video. 



Posted by hannaht at 16:54:18


Wednesday, 30 July 2014

Snowdonia Greenway Bike Shuttle Bus
The Greenway Shuttle Bus will connect you and your bike to the start of some of the best cycling routes in Southern Snowdonia.

On Thursdays and other selected dates through out the summer holidays, the South Snowdonia Greenway Shuttle will transport you and your bike allowing you to leave the car behind or make a longer point to point ride.

The shuttle links Dyffryn Ardudwy, Barmouth, Dolgellau, Coed y Brenin and Llyn Trawsfyndd. Make the most of a days riding at Coed y Brenin, riding the Mawddach Trail or mixing it up with the bike and canoe facilities at Llyn Trawsfynydd.

The South Snowdonia Greenway itself is a 43km route on quiet roads and cycle tracks.

 

The first Shuttle of the summer season runs on Tuesday 29th July and the last on Thursday 4thSeptember.
 


Posted by hannaht at 16:28:44


Sunday, 20 July 2014

Afan Lodge: Bike Friendly Accomodation
A little shout out to the very wonderful Afan Lodge who invited us to stay with them on our recent Bike and Beer road trip across Wales earlier this month - more on the road trip coming soon.

Afan L0dge
If you're not familiar with Afan Lodge it is ideally located between Afan Forest Park Visitor Centre and Glyncorrwg Mountain Bike Centre. Modelled on a 'Swiss lodge' ski chalet it makes for a perfect base camp with all the Afan single track trails available within a short cycle ride from the door. Cwmcarn and BikePark Wales are only a short drive away too.
 
Afan Lodge Skills
 
As a mountain biker you won't feel out of place - in fact you'll feel positively embraced. Bike paraphernalia adorns the walls, there's a pump track & skills loop in the garden, a secure bike lock up on site and huge food portions to sate most appetites.  
 
 
Oh, and there is plenty of Welsh beer available in the bar too.
 
neath ales

A little piece of mountain bike heaven to lay your head after a fun day on the trails.  Next time why not make a weekend of it. 
 
For more info visit the Afan Lodge website



Posted by hannaht at 10:42:45


Wednesday, 16 July 2014

Up and Riding: BikePark Wales Celebrate First Anniversary
BikePark Wales is the UK’s first and biggest commercial bike park. On August 24th anniversary. It is hard to believe that this ground breaking facility is in fact less than a year old, so much has been achieved in that short time but there is much more to come from BikePark Wales. A new coaching programme using video analysis and deconstruction techniques has just gone live and is proving extremely popular. Additionally two new trails are now under construction, a red jump trail that is set to be the UK’s longest and most creative section of flowy jump trail and a new, steeper black run designed specifically for long travel DH bikes. This is just the tip of the iceberg, there is plenty more to come from BikePark Wales in the near future.

In “Up and Riding” we join the BPW team 10 months after the park opened and find out what it was like behind the scenes with the mayhem of opening weekend. We also meet the BPW staff for the first time including a hilarious introduction to the BikePark trail crew. There are riding sections with some of the UK’s best riders including BPW locals Manon Carpenter and Taylor Vernon and we get an outsiders view of the park from MBUK’s Doddy.

BikePark Wales would like to thank everyone that has visited and helped make the first year such a success, each and every one of you has invested in the future of the park and we are already seeing the benefits of well maintained trails and new trails being added. We look forward to unveiling our two new trails later in the summer sand enjoying some fresh tracks with you!



Find out more and book your trip to BikePark Wales


Posted by hannaht at 13:28:20


Tuesday, 08 July 2014

Beer & Bike Countdown
I’m a firm believer that no two words go better together than Beer and Bikes.  If you add Welsh in front… ‘Welsh Beer and Bikes’...then all the better.  So this week we begin our roadtrip across Wales pedalling at some of the best Welsh trail centres and drinking some of the tastiest Welsh beer.  

 
Handmade Beer Company
 
We'll be calling in at Afan Forest, BikePark Wales, Coed y Brenin, Afan Lodge, Purple Moose and Grey Trees Brewery to name but a few stops. 

Grey Trees Brewery
 
At the end of our journey we’ll put together a write up and a video so you can follow in our tyre tracks.  Until then follow our journey on both Facebook and Twitter. We’ll be using the hashtag #beerandbikes

Coed y Brenin Freeride
 


Posted by hannaht at 13:40:13


Thursday, 19 June 2014

BPW Launch Bespoke Coaching
BikePark Wales are delighted to announce the launch of their Coaching Programme.

BikePark was has quickly established itself as one of the UK’s premier riding destinations, with trails to suit all abilities. It has always been an aim to add to the offering at BikePark Wales with an accessible, high quality coaching programme that helps riders to improve their riding skills in a safe and supportive environment. It has taken longer than expected to finalise the coaching programme at BikePark Wales but if a job is worth doing, it is worth doing properly!

BikePark Wales aims to be the UK’s first centre of excellence for mountain bike coaching. Using a unique coaching programme designed specifically for us by Ian Warby and Richard Kelly of B1ke,  our skills sessions help to break down each fundamental skill into its key elements enabling you to improve your riding and understand not only how to improve but also the science behind why. As adults the “why” gives us the trust in our equipment, ourselves and the coaching we receive.
 
 

Part of what makes our coaching package so strong is the use of video analysis. The ability to see that what you feel you are doing is not necessarily what you are actually doing can be very enlightening. It can help riders to identify mistakes that are holding them back and helps riders to work through these with the help of our highly trained coaches.

BikePark Wales offers a fantastic place to learn, with green trail through to black trails, there is no limit to riders development and progress. By breaking down skills into key elements our coaching ensures the skills learnt here are transferable and applicable in all trail situations.
 
Whether you are an experienced rider looking to further improve your technical skills with coaching, or a complete beginner to the sport looking to pick up the fundamentals to get going, we have the coaching session to suit. Initially BikePark Wales will offer the following courses, but we also offer 1 to 1 coaching and private groups. Each course is tailored to the group ensuring all riders take away the skills they need to improve.
 

BikePark Wales Courses
1. Park Essentials and Core Skills
Ideal for first time bike park riders but by no means only for beginners. We will coach you through the fundamental techniques required to have you descending safely and with confidence.

2. Rhythm and flow
Have you ever wondered how some riders manage to carry more speed and ride with seemingly less effort and more confidence? This course holds the answers. If smooth confident and efficient riding over all terrain is your goal look no further.

3. Carving Corners
Often a neglected skill in favour of drops and jumps, however corners can be the most fun part of a trail. Come and learn to ride faster and smoother round corners.

4. Drop Zone
Are you taking the chicken line or walking round drops? This module helps you take the next step and will help you to develop confidence to land softly and smoothly.
 
5. Jump Starter
From small tabletops to large gaps, get the technique right and you can build up to safely tackle larger features with new confidence.
 
6. DH Race Improver
Want to get your head in the zone and knock seconds off your time, this course will help you do it! BikePark Wales is the UK's premier mountain bike destination with trails to suit all riding styles and
abilities. There are options to pedal up as well as a fast and efficient uplift service.

Sessions are available to book immediately on the BikePark Wales website with the first sessions starting as soon as Friday 27th June. 

To book online and find out more visit https://www.bikeparkwales.com/coaching.asp


Posted by hannaht at 10:17:41


Monday, 09 June 2014

Bike Park Wales Demo Day - June 2014
Think this could make a brilliant fathers day present....
 


Posted by hannaht at 13:19:54


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