MBWales - February Challenge: Dyfi Valley Volunteers

February Challenge: Dyfi Valley Volunteers

At the start of February we challenged you to get dirty. February's MBWales 2012 Challenge is to get involved with some of the awesome community managed mountain bike trails in Wales. At the start of the month we had a great post from Vicky at Penmachno and now we want to introduce you to Mike Ford and another great community based initiative in Dyfi Valley.  

"Mountain biking in the Dyfi valley is literally as old as the hills.

Back when hula hoops were 12p a packet and everything was in black and white, something stirred in the woods surrounding Machynlleth. It was a hardy group of mud lovers, a small and disparate band of explorers, roaming the hills and valleys on their Raleigh Mustang's or Muddy Fox Courier's.

Amongst their number were Tegid Humphreys and Carl Jones whom, after having enjoyed the delights of the newly opened Coed-y-Brenin mountain bike centre (25 miles north of Machynlleth), wished to recreate those rocky delights, here, in sunny Mach.

Then, in 2004 DyfiMountainbiking Ltd was created as the 'hub' around which, the wheel of events slowly turn. Together with Ecodyfi, funding was secured and Ecotrails were contracted to build the Climach-X trail (it's Climax, geddit?).

Prospecting for the new Mach4 route

We then had the longest handcrafted single track descent – IN THE WORLD! Well, probably in the UK and definitely in Powys. This was made possible with financial help fromWales Tourist BoardandDulasLtd, and many other donations from local businesses and people.
 
We hope to extend the final descent of the Climach-X trail to end at the car park, after felling operations have been completed later this year. Volunteers will be needed for help with this! More details will be announced on the both here on MBWales and on the Dyfi Valley Facebook group. Please contact us if you wish to offer help.

One of the many leg burning Dyfi Enduro Climbs

The world renowned DyfiEnduro was born nearly 11 years ago, due to the hard work and enthusiasm of many people, as these things often are. Spawned from that, Carl Jones, now organisies the Winter Warm-up event held every winter in the forest, for those of you keen enough to brave the hills in sub zero temperatures. And last October, Joe Hayward started the Coed y Brenin Enduro. Details of these and any future events can be found on the Dyfi MTB Events Facebook page.

And then on to the Mach 1, 2 and 3 trails were helped along by Dave Perrot, 3 amazing, waymarked trails, which run broadly South of the town. Waterproof, tearproof maps are available from The Holey Trail bikeshop in Machynlleth.
 
At the wind swept saddleback section of Mach2 & 3

Soon to be waymarked – Mach 4, we have the route planned and indeed its ridable most of the year, but it needs a bridge to ensure it's navigable at all times. Details will be announced soon.

The trails in and around Machynlleth have been created and maintained with the help and enthusiasm of many people not yet mentioned – Judith Thornton (local Bike ranger),Teresa Walters, Joe Hayward (Summit Cycles), Jonney Pickles (The Holey Trail), Fraz Jones, Andrew Warringtion to name but a few. If you have given your time freely to help at any of our events THANKYOU!

For other sources of information, please see the official dyfi mountain biking website http://www.dyfimountainbiking.org.uk/ and blog, which have details of upcoming events, closures, accommodation and maps as well as route guides and places to eat in the area.

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