With somewhere between 500km - 600km of purpose built single-track and plenty of beautifully rugged natural trails there are literally hundreds of routes awaiting the intermediate mountain biker. Hannah Maia Taylor shares some of her choice riding locations.
Wild Cart Trail, Antur Stiniog
Antur Stiniog has welcomed mountain bikers in 2012 and it’s a very popular destination. It’s predominantly a downhill and freeride centre with an uplift shuttle service. Full of flowy berms, drop-offs, double jumps and rocky descents, the 'Wild Cart' trail is an awesome adrenalin fuelled Red run, with the Black runs 'Y Du' and 'Black Powder' for the more experienced riders.
The Snowdon Big Mountain Descent
Get you and your bike to the summit of Snowdon and back down again. There are multiple options to ascend but try the 'Llanberis path' (there’ll be some hike-a-bike required) and descend via the Rangers Path onto Telegraph Valley. Fast at the top and becoming looser and rockier before you hit some tight and steep switchbacks. Remember to follow the Snowdon Voluntary Cycle Agreement put in place to avoid accidents. The 'Ranger's Path' is the more aggressive route and for experienced riders only.
Derwen or Gorlech Trail, Brechfa
Brechfa has tracks for all abilities, take the 'Derwen Trail' a perfect introduction for family and new riders, the 'Gorlech Trail' designed by Rowan Sorrell takes you up a level and the Black 'Raven Trail' is best left to the more experienced. You’ll be grinning from ear to ear by the time you reach the bottom of these trails. Routes that effortlessly mix up the more traditional narrow woodland singletracks with Brechfa’s signature brash descents sweeping between the trees. You’ll be taken to interesting corners of the forest passing spooky mossy overhangs and riding over the magnificent Douglas fir Northshore Bridge.
Summit Trail, Nant yr Arian
Stunning high-level wilderness riding at it’s best. In contrast to the swoopy berms of many other black graded trails it’s the wild, desolate, lonely beauty of the Syfydrin’s far loops that make it one to savour. Equip yourself for every eventuality, as this is one route not to underestimate. Nant yr Arian offers the Red 'Summit Trail' for those at intermediate level and the more advanced options of the Black 'Syfydrin Trail' only for the more experienced riders.
Llandegla Reservoir, Coed Llandegla
Coed Llandegla also offers a range from the Green 5km run suitable for children and ending at the Llandegla reservoir. The Blue and Red runs offer a more adrenalin fuelled ride for the intermediate rider with the Black 21km trail filled to the brim with swooping berms and grin inducing jumps is at the higher end of intermediate and needs some serious riding experience before being attempted. A true roller coaster ride presenting you with table tops, doubles, drops and surprise features. What’s not to like?