The Brecon Beacons and Carmarthenshire provides amazing places to enjoy cycling, be it mountain biking, road cycling or a family cycle day out. So I have decided that 2020 is my year to get back on my bike and enjoy what this lovely area has to offer.
Mountain biking is something I have tried to get the bug for in the past, but so many of my cycling attempts have ended in well…pain. I remember pedalling up steep slopes (probably gradual climbs for most), my legs and bum hurting, gasping for breath and to add insult to injury everyone else passing me like they were travelling downhill. A complete ‘red mist’ kicked in (not like me at all 😉), resulting in me throwing my bike off a bank into a gorse bush and walking off muttering obscenities. Around me there was a mixture of concern, worry and amusement from other mountain bike trail users. I still don’t know to this day how Phill got my bike back!
I continued my cycling aspirations, this time with the purchase of padded shorts and an inhaler. However on my next attempt at Bwlch Nant yr Arian coming downhill on a rocky MTB trail route, I turn my handle bars to find my handle bars turn but my wheel did not. This time both myself and the bike ended up off a bank in a gorse bush (probably karma). A few scrapes, bruises, shouting and then laughter later it was a funny story and a lesson for me to learn how to set up and check my bike properly.
To encourage me to get back in the saddle I have been researching the additional health benefits of cycling and came across an article by Matthew Barbour for Bike Radar identifying 30 benefits of cycling, these included:
· Increase muscle
· Improved cardio
· Weight loss
· Improved balance and reactions
· And yes… improved sex life – who knew!
So I’m looking forward to my 2020 Welsh cycling adventure.
Not sure what type of cycling to do? Here are some of the cycling activities you can participate in whilst at Brynderwen Holidays.
Mountain Biking: In Carmarthenshire we have a fantastic mixture of cross country, trail riding, all mountain/enduro, downhill and trail centres. There are routes to suit all levels of mountain biker from introductory trails to extreme. Brynderwen Holidays is a good base to visit and experience a range of trails in Mid, West and South Wales including Cwm Rhaeadr Forest, Crychan Forest, Black Mountain, The Gap, Brechfa, Bike Park Wales, Afan Forest Park, Nant-yr-Arian, Elan Valley, Usk Reservoir, Llyn Llech Owain.
Road Cycling and Nation Cycle Network: Carmarthenshire’s 3487 kilometre of road network has some spectacular road cycling routes. You are bound to find a route suitable for you, be that epic endurance, big mountain climbs, reckless sprints or leisurely scenic ride. We are situated on the Black Mountain Road (over 400m climb) to the Brecon Beacons and close to the Bethlehem Hill, which was featured in stage 1 of the 2018 Tour of Britain and stage 6 of the 2019 OVO Women’s Tour.
Circuits and Off Road Tracks : Carmarthen Town is home to one of the oldest velodromes in Wales and we also have a closed road cycling route at Pembrey Country Park. Both venues offer off road cycling, opportunities to train and various cycling events. Carmarthenshire also has miles of traffic free paths suitable for a range of abilities and ages. These include the Millennium Coastal Path, Swiss Valley Path and Amman Valley Riverside Path.
Cycling Events: Why not combine a break at Brynderwen Holidays with one of the many cycling events in the area. This includes Gritfest, Cross Mountain, Battle on the Beach, Escape to Afan, summer cider cycle, real ale wobble and lots more.
Please contact us if you have any questions. Phill is always happy to talk about bikes and biking!