Spokes Cycle Touring Club
Mid & West Wales Tour Notes
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Llanishen (Cardiff) to Hay on Wye
Three Arches Pub car park 09.00 hrs
The bulk of the route follows National cycle trails R47, R46 and R492. Apart from a stretch between Newport and outskirts of Pontypool on canal paths, the route will be on tarmac'd lanes and tarmac'd cycle trails.
Key climbs of the day are from Blaenavon over the B4246 Blorenge mountain to Llanfoist and after Llanthony, where lanes lead up to Gospel Pass. Good hilltop cycling before sweep down to Hay on Wye.
Care needed on the section running between Abergavenny-Llanthony-Hay on Wye as cycling through narrow lanes at a time when likelyhood of traffic in late afternoon.
Morning tea stop at Pontypool. Lunch at Abergavenny.
Hay on Wye to Llandovery
Roughly half of this ride, between Hay on Wye and Llanwrtyd Wells, follows National cycle trails R8, R43 and R 820 on mainly quiet lanes. Care needed on approach to Builth Wells as part of route on busy road.
From Llanwrtyd Wells there is gradual climb to the start of Devils Staircase where care needed on 25% climb on very narrow lanes where oncoming traffic possible. After climb there are lumpy stretches on lanes running parallel to the river and alongside Llyn Brianne reservoir, both on the right. Great care needed because of wide heavily loaded lorries going in both directions.
The last 10 miles from the reservoir dam to Llandovery are a comfortable, mainly downhill ride, to the finish at Llandovery.
Tea stop at Builth Wells. Lunch at Llanwrtyd Wells
Llandovery to Newport
This is a" Devon and Cornwall" ride with narrow lanes and climbs throughout the day.
In the morning key climbs are towards :-
- through forest to Llanbyther
In the afternoon there is not the height gained as in the morning. But a mix of short sharp and steady climbs to the likes of Pentre Cwrt-Trebedw and beyond Abercych to Croft and Glanrhyd will test stamina. After Croft there is a -thankfully-straightforward run to Newport.
We intend to split this day into four sections and cycle it methodically, and as a group. Plenty of breaks are planned for the day in addition to lunch at Newcastle Emlyn.
Newport to Llanelli
This is a mixed cycling day.The bulk of it will be on narrow lanes. With the run-in to Llanelli being on tarmac'd cycle trails. It will not be as tough as Day (3).The morning will carry on where we left the day before-climbing. Firstly to Crymyrch (tea stop) and then climbs continue to Trelech.
From Trelech the route heads south, part flat-part undulating, until it reaches Meidrim.The stretch from Meidrim to Carmarthen, apart from a pull at Penplas ,is fairly flat.
After Carmarthen climbing again on the approach and descent to Ferryside. After that mainly flat coastal cycling to Llanelli
Llanelli to Cardiff
All of this ride is on tarmac'd lanes and cycle trails. With some stretches on A and B roads.
The first half of the ride follows National cycle routes R4 and R887, mainly flat, to Baglan, PortTalbot. Then, a gradual climb on tarmac'd old railway line to Blaengwynfi. Next follow a steep climb from Blaengwynfi on A4107 Bwlch road to junction with A4061 and descent to Ton Pentre. Follow B roads through the Rhondda to Trehafod and pick up cycle trails R881/R4 and R8 to finish in Cardiff
Tea stop in Swansea marina. Lunch in Baglan!