27 mountain bike routes in North Wales (see below for route location map and descriptions).
Written and researched by Pete Bursnall who clearly loves the area and knows all the best trails to ride.
All abilities will find a great selection of rides. Trails are graded for severity and for each route there is a map, route summary, route description and route profile
Routes are split into the regions of the Carneddau, the Clwyds, Mignant & Moelwyn, Moel Siabod, Rhynnogau and Snowdon
ISBN 0948153997. Published: 2012.
144 Pages. Book Size: A5
Author: Pete Bursnall
Map showing approximate recommended starting points for each route as indicated in the book.
Use the controls to zoom about. Click on a marker for route information.
Route 01. Carneddau Circuit
Distance: 78km Grade: Red
Start: Abergwyngregyn. A big undertaking, with most of the climbing coming in the first half with 3 big ascents. Roads are used to join the trails which are a mixture of rocky, grassy, part of the Marin Trail and cycleways. Part of the route offer high and remote riding with fine views. A number of cafes on route to keep the fires stoked!
Route 02. Cwm Eigiau
Distance: 18km. Grade: Red
Start: Tal-y-Bont, Dolgarrog. A bit of an oddity as this is a 'there and back' route. Starting with a very tough climb but this it's onto the rewards for the hard work.
Route 03. Druids & Romans
Distance: 30km. Grade: Red/Black
Start: Llanfairfechan. Three long climbs, great descending, wide views and the feeling of being a long way from home. One of the best routes in the guide.
Route 04. Druids
Distance: 14km. Grade: Blue
Start: Llanfairfechan. This is the shortest route in the guide. That says it still has a challenging climb, great views and fun trails to enjoy.
Route 05. Llyn Anafon
Distance: 22km. Grade: Red
Start: Llanfairfechan. An enjoyable ride up to a remote reservoir followed by two winding descents.
Route 06. Clwydian North
Distance: 23km. Grade: Blue/Red
Start: Nannerch. A great ride that stays high on the mountains for much of the time with great views.
Route 07. Clwydian South
Distance: 29km. Grade: Red
Start: Moel Famau car park. Slightly longer and more difficult than the northern section (see above), this route gives some excellent riding on the shoulders of the mountains.
Route 08. Berwyn & Bronwen
Distance: 26km. Grade: Blue/Red
Start: Llandrillo. Remote and wild feeling, especially in the second half, this route gives wide views and interesting mountain biking with some technical interest.
Route 09. Llandrillo & Llangynnog
Distance: 30km. Grade: Black/Blue
Start: Llandrillo. Not a route for the inexperienced but if you are up to it then it is a well the effort for a day exploring where others fear to tread.
Route 10. Llangollen
Distance: 25.5km. Grade: Red
Start: Llangollen. An interesting ramble around the hills the south of Llangollen on varied surfaces. Three big climbs, three long descents and a fistful of fine views.
Route 11. Tregeiriog
Distance: 27km. Grade: Red
Start: Tregeiriog. An excellent ride on varied surfaces, grass, rock and rut with a relatively small proportion of minor road.
Route 12. Wayfarer's Route
Distance: 41km. Grade: Red
Start: Corwen. A long and enjoyable route. The middle 30km gives some of the most excellent exploring to be done on a mountain bike, wild and remote but never threatening, an absolute classic.
Route 13. East of Betws
Distance: 50km. Grade: Red
Start Betws y Coed, or Dolwyddelan, or Ysbyty Ifan. A long and involved route linking remote bridleway sand byways with sections of equally remote mountain road.
Route 14. Ysbyty Ifan
Distance: 32km. Grade: Red
Start Ysbyty Ifan. This is a tough and sometimes very vague little route requiring good navigational skills on the return leg and the ability to maintain a good sense of humour!
Route 15. Trawsfynnydd
Distance: 36.5km. Grade: Red
Start: visitor car park at the disused Trawsfynnydd Nuclear Power Station. Every guide needs an absolute esoteric ramble through the bridleways lost and found with variable riding and tricky navigation, hide and seek on a bike!
Route 16. Rhoberll Fawr
Distance: 24km. Grade: Red
Start: Llanfachreth near Dolgellau. An entertaining ride on high mountain tracks with a dose of adventure thrown in for goodmeasure.
Route 17. Bwlch y Groes
Distance: 14km. Grade: Red/Yuk
Start: Dolwyddelan. A real mix of singletrack, very minor roads and even has a purpose built singletrack thrown in for good measure.
Route 18. Moel Siabod
Distance: 28.5km. Grade: Red
Start: Bryn Glo car park just outside Capel Curig. An excellent ride taking in high and remote moorland with novel views. The riding is at time challenging and technical both on the flat and descending, good bike skills being essential to get the most from this route.
Route 19. Sarn Helen
Distance: 20km. Grade: Blue
Start: Bryn Glo car park just outside Capel Curig. This is one of the more accessible routes in the guide and one of the most enjoyable, a classic mountain bike journey.
Route 20. Betws to Bryn Glo Link
Distance: 8km. Grade: Blue
Start: Betws y Coed. A useful linking route if you are based in Betws y Coed and are looking at riding the Sarn Helen, Circuit of Moel Siabod or Llyn Cowlyd routes.
Route 21. Pont Scethin
Distance: 25km. Grade: Red
Start: Llanbedr. One of the author's favourite rides. The riding is good with exceptional views, high above the sea with Cader Idris and the Mwddach Estuary making guest appearances.
Route 22. Bwlch y Rhiwgyr
Distance: 30km. Grade: Red
Start: Tal-y-Bont, near Barmouth. A most excellent companion route t the Pont Scethin ride covering some of the same ground but in the opposite direction giving a very different feel. Basically a figure of eight loop with three steep climbs, amazing views and some great riding on varied surfaces.
Route 23. Bwlch Cwm Llan & Beddgelert Forest
Distance: 18.5km. Grade: Red
Start: Rhyd Ddu. A very enjoyable double top route with outstanding views, excellent riding and some tricky challenges.
Route 24. Moel Eilio
Distance: 22km. Grade: Red
Start Llanberis. Some hard and technical climbing gives way to excellent descending and it rides in well both directions.
Route 25. Snowdon via Llanberis path
Distance: 16km. Grade: Black
Start: Llanberis. Between 1st May and 30th September riding is restricted to outside the hours of 10am and 5pm; so most people do an evening trip, this can be a brilliant experience on a fine evening.
Route 26. Snowdon via Llanberis, Ranger & Maesgwm
Distance: 20km. Grade: Double Black
Start: Llanberis. The ride is a mix of push up and rough riding. The descent is extremely steep, loose and technical in places and very pleasant in others.
Route 27. Snowdon via Snowdon, Ranger & Rhyd Ddu
Distance: 20km. Grade: Double Black
Start: Llanberis. The third bridleway leading to the summit of Snowdon is the Rhyd Ddu path and provides the most technical but rideable descent once the initial section to and over the South Ridge and been negotiated.
All photos © Pete Bursnall
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