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Mittelpunkt aller Aktivitäten
Mittelpunkt aller Aktivitäten - Besucherzentrum des Bikepark Wales
Flowiger Abfahrtsspaß
Flowiger Abfahrtsspaß
Ab geht's auf einem blauen Trail
Ab geht's auf einem blauen Trail
Bikepark Wales
Bikepark Wales - vom angrenzenden Berg aus betrachtet
Die Landschaft ist atemberaubend schön
Die Landschaft ist atemberaubend schön - einst war sie eine Hauptzone des industriellen Niedergangs
Das Besucherzentrum
Das Besucherzentrum - Hier meldet ihr euch an und kauft euer Ticket
Daniel Gomm
Daniel Gomm - General Manager im Bike Park Wales, hat uns mit vielen nützlichen Informationen versorgt
Die gut bestückte Werkstatt
Die gut bestückte Werkstatt
Chill-Zone
Chill-Zone - lädt zum entspannen und Pause machen ein
Der Fahrradladen
Der Fahrradladen - wir haben noch kein E-Bike zum Kaufen oder Leihen gefunden, aber zukünftig ist dies wohl geplant
Eine warme Stube und jede Menge Essen
Eine warme Stube und jede Menge Essen - um den ganzen Tag über bei Kräften zu bleiben. Günstige Preise und gute Qualität
Es gibt einen Bike Wash
Es gibt einen Bike Wash - aber dieser war an dem Tag, an dem wir dort waren, außer Betrieb
Wir haben noch nie so viele Shuttle-Trucks gesehen wie hier.
Wir haben noch nie so viele Shuttle-Trucks gesehen wie hier.
Viele Parkplätze
Viele Parkplätze - in unmittelbarer Nähe des Besucherzentrums
Bikepark Wales
Bikepark Wales - Trail Plan
Jeder Trail hat eine detaillierte Erklärung, was einen erwartet
Jeder Trail hat eine detaillierte Erklärung, was einen erwartet
Dies ist der einfachste Trail hier
Dies ist der einfachste Trail hier - eher wie ein einfacher Pump Track
Leicht fahrbare Schotterpisten führen dich zum Gipfel
Leicht fahrbare Schotterpisten führen dich zum Gipfel
Mit unseren E-Bikes haben wir den Singletrail auf den Gipfel erklommen
Mit unseren E-Bikes haben wir den Singletrail auf den Gipfel erklommen
Einige schöne Ausblicke über die Landschaft auf dem Weg zum Gipfel
Einige schöne Ausblicke über die Landschaft auf dem Weg zum Gipfel
Auf dem Gipfel steht ein großes Schild mit allen möglichen Informationen zu dem Bikepark den Trails
Auf dem Gipfel steht ein großes Schild mit allen möglichen Informationen zu dem Bikepark den Trails
Von hier aus starten einige Trails
Von hier aus starten einige Trails
Dai ist ein walisischer Name
Dai ist ein walisischer Name - es wird auch "die" ausgesprochen, womit ziemlich einfach zu verstehen ist, dass dieser Trail Anspruch hat. Die schwarze Farbe signalisiert dies zusätzlich....
Wir haben den Wibbly Wobbly ausprobiert
Wir haben den Wibbly Wobbly ausprobiert - einen ziemlich guten Enduro Trail
Dies ist ein Testabschnitt eines blauen Trails
Dies ist ein Testabschnitt eines blauen Trails
Runter gehts auf dem blauen Trail "Terry's Belly"
Runter gehts auf dem blauen Trail "Terry's Belly"
Smoother Trail Spaß
Smoother Trail Spaß
Die Anlieger sind auf allen Trails sind perfekt angelegt
Die Anlieger sind auf allen Trails sind perfekt angelegt - keine Bremswellen, smooth und großzügig
Auch Airtime kommt hier nicht zu kurz
Auch Airtime kommt hier nicht zu kurz
Der höchste Punkt des Wegenetzes bietet einen schönen Ausblick
Der höchste Punkt des Wegenetzes bietet einen schönen Ausblick
Im Waldabschnitt verlaufen die Wege parallel
Im Waldabschnitt verlaufen die Wege parallel
Anfänger kommen auf den blauen Trails sehr gut zurecht
Anfänger kommen auf den blauen Trails sehr gut zurecht
Das Moos in den Wäldern ist Indikator für die hohe Feuchtigkeit das ganze Jahr über
Das Moos in den Wäldern ist Indikator für die hohe Feuchtigkeit das ganze Jahr über
Es ist ziemlich lustig entspannt hier umher zu cruisen
Es ist ziemlich lustig entspannt hier umher zu cruisen - oder alternativ an seine Grenzen zu gehen
Einige annähernd perfekt angelegte Kurven in den Wäldern.
Einige annähernd perfekt angelegte Kurven in den Wäldern.
Die Wälder sind sehr mystisch
Die Wälder sind sehr mystisch - du fühlst dich wie in einem"Herr der Ringe"-Film.
Die Wege sind sehr gut ausgeschildert
Die Wege sind sehr gut ausgeschildert - keine Chance, sich zu verirren
Die deutlichsten Wegmarkierungen, die wir je gesehen haben
Die deutlichsten Wegmarkierungen, die wir je gesehen haben
Unsere größte Herausforderung war es, das richtige E-Bike für den Tag auszusuchen
Unsere größte Herausforderung war es, das richtige E-Bike für den Tag auszusuchen - Wir hatten an diesem Tag den meisten Spaß auf dem Orange. Alles in allem ein großartiger Ort zum E-Biken

This post is also available in: deDeutsch

Bike Park Wales is located in the southern part of an old redeveloped coal mining area commonly known as “The Valleys”, in south Wales near Merthyr Tydfil. (How to say it… mer-tha-tid-ville). It’s a purpose built Bike Park that has become a focal part of the local area attracting bikers from far and wide. It was built with a focus on normal gravity riders, we thought it would be a great place to go and check out for e-bikes. It’s located on leased land which means it’s private and you have to pay to access the facilities and trails. We had heard about its reputation from so many people we thought it was time to see if it could beat the alps for fun factor. 

Focus of all activities
# Focus of all activities - the Bike Park Wales main visitor center
One of the trails that is built for flow
# One of the trails that is built for flow

Bike Park Wales – In Brief

It has been built with a Finance Wales loan and with funding from the Welsh Government, including a Visit Wales EU funded Sustainable Tourism project grant, these are aimed at developing Cycling Centres of Excellence in South Wales. Our time at the park for a day was short and sweet, but we managed to try a lot of the trails. On about one charge we managed three or four runs, as we pedalled up and down the 250 meter hillside. We were surprised to find Wales has one of the best bike park style locations we have ridden in Europe in the last few years. By e-bike, the trails are fun and accessible to all with different levels of skill. £ 12 (14 €) per day ticket seems a very reasonable price to pay for a quality ride experience. We documented our time there with our camera and rode as much as we could in a day.

Attacking a blue level trail
# Attacking a blue level trail

Bike Park Wales – Location

The land and hillside are pretty ideal for a bike park. The area is forested and has really easy access from the main UK road network. It is about 3 hours from the centre of London, in a westerly direction. Merthyr Tydfil as a location means the weather is fairly damp through the winter months, but never really cold, with very few if any days with snow on the ground in winter. The park director told us during our stay that maybe there were three days in a year when it was closed due to poor weather. Otherwise the land and location is drained pretty well and made of the right mix of stone and soil that the trails never become super muddy. You might be riding in the Welsh woods, but the trail lines are well maintained and in great condition. The day we visited we felt like we could have been in the south of Europe as there was so much sun.

Bike Park Wales
# Bike Park Wales - viewed from the adjacent mountain
The landscape is pretty stunning
# The landscape is pretty stunning - once it was a major zone of industrial decline

Google Map Location

Bike Center

The hub of operations at Bike Park Wales is the visitor center. Once you arrive and park in the ample parking, you have to check in here and make sure you read and sign their liability clauses and riding rules, pay your entry fee and then go ride. Trails up to the top start at the visitor center.

Visitor centre
# Visitor centre - Go in here, to sign in and buy your pass

Inside the visitor centre is a fully stocked bike shop, rental facility, restaurant and repair shop. Here is also where the shuttle services start for those who wish to shuttle. Obviously we didn’t as we have an e-bike and its more fun to ride up. However we were told that from spring to autumn the shuttles can be booked up to three months in advance. So if you want to turn up and ride with no stress and get as many runs in as you can then e-bikes seem to be the way forward.

Daniel Gomm
# Daniel Gomm - general manager at Bike Park Wales, full of useful information
The well stocked busy repair shop
# The well stocked busy repair shop
Chill zone
# Chill zone - invites you to relax and take a break
The bike shop
# The bike shop - we didn't spot any e-bike for sale yet or rent, but are told they will be coming soon
A warm stove and lots of food
# A warm stove and lots of food - to keep you fuelled all day. Reasonable prices and quality
There is a bike wash
# There is a bike wash - but it was out of order the day we were there
We have never seen so many shuttle trucks as here
# We have never seen so many shuttle trucks as here
A lot of car parking
# A lot of car parking - right close to the visitors center

Trails

The shear number of trails means we did not have time to sample them all. But all difficulty levels are catered for. We spent most of our time on red and blue level trails. There is a pretty cool climbing trail to the top that winds it’s way up through the woods and can be ridden in our experience by all levels of rider. Alternatively riders can pedal up the gravel fire roads.

Bike Park Wales
# Bike Park Wales - Trail Map
Every trail has an explanation to how it will be
# Every trail has an explanation to how it will be
This is the easiest trail there
# This is the easiest trail there - more like a simple pump track
If you wish to pedal to the top the gravel roads are very easy to ride
# If you wish to pedal to the top the gravel roads are very easy to ride
With our e-bikes we took the single trail to the top
# With our e-bikes we took the single trail to the top
Some nice views across the landscape on the way to the top
# Some nice views across the landscape on the way to the top

Each trail has a short start section called a “qualifier,” which lets the rider know more or less how difficult the rest of the trail will be. We found our favourite trail of the day, a blue trail, to be “Terry’s Belly,” which we rode a lot of times, fast fun and super flowing.

The top of the bike park has this sign that explains everything
# The top of the bike park has this sign that explains everything
A few trails start from here
# A few trails start from here
Dai is a welsh name
# Dai is a welsh name - it is also pronounced "die," so it's fairly easy to understand that this trail is hard. The black color also gives a clue...
We tried Wibbly Wobbly
# We tried Wibbly Wobbly - a pretty good Enduro style trail
This is a proving section of a blue trail
# This is a proving section of a blue trail

Once you step off the blue trails onto the red trails the going gets a bit tougher and some Enduro skills are required to take on the rock garden features and small drops.

Heading down the blue trail "Terry's Belly"
# Heading down the blue trail "Terry's Belly"
Smooth trail fun
# Smooth trail fun
The berms on all the trails are perfect, no braking bumps, smooth and big
# The berms on all the trails are perfect, no braking bumps, smooth and big - keine Bremswellen, smooth und großzügig
You can spend a lot of time in the air
# You can spend a lot of time in the air
The top of the trail network shows the landscape around
# The top of the trail network shows the landscape around

On the e-bike the trails were simply great to ride and with banked corners plus more natural wood sections, we were able to test the different characteristics of the Orange Alpine 6 E we had on test for the week. We recommend if you want to ride all day, take a second battery especially if you are riding around in turbo mode all day. We didn’t spot many recharging sockets anywhere, which gave us the idea e-bike usage here is pretty low at the moment. Eventually as the center develops we are sure they will be added in.

In the wood section the trails run parallel
# In the wood section the trails run parallel
Beginners can cope very well with the blue trails
# Beginners can cope very well with the blue trails
The moss shows that the woods are damp all year
# The moss shows that the woods are damp all year

Most trails were hard packed with gravel packed down on the surface of them. Riding was fast and fun, we didn’t find we needed to be particularly wary of any unknown trail features that would jump out and surprise us. The blue trails especially, were one endless flow ride, the faster you went the more fun they became. Many of the trails had some perfectly formed jumps to practice on as well. In the wooded sections the trail bases were softer and well formed, great real e-mountain biking.

Cruise if you want
# Cruise if you want - it's pretty fun, or push limits
Some seriously perfect berms in the woods
# Some seriously perfect berms in the woods

The jump sections are all well shaped so that the bike takes off and lands without becoming unstable in the air. As the lip to air transfer is smooth and landings sweet and perfect, some of the best jump lines we have ridden anywhere.

We didn’t really ride the pro level trails that much as our focus was on e-biking and flow. For what we did try we can say that they will keep you on edge and in some cases we think a downhill bike might be ideal, maybe the perfect place for the Haibike DH

The woods are very moody
# The woods are very moody - you feel like you are in a Lord of the Rings film
The trails are very clearly marked
# The trails are very clearly marked - no chance of getting lost
Clearest trail markings we have ever seen
# Clearest trail markings we have ever seen

Conclusion @eMTB-news.de

Trail centers have become a welcome part of mountain biking culture over the last 15 years in the UK and having a place like Bike Park Wales to ride at is really great. We highly recommend heading there whenever you can. The trails are as good as any bike park related experience in the alps. And the trail maintenance which takes place all year and services we found present, will beat a lot of the big mountain locations in Europe, which to be honest surprised us. As for e-bikes, the UK is slightly behind the curve when it comes to market penetration. So the numbers seen on the trails will be quite low. However if you don’t want to shuttle and want to ride as much as you can, there are some really fun smooth flowing trails at Bike Park Wales for your e-bike.

Our biggest challenge was choosing which e-bike to use on the day
# Our biggest challenge was choosing which e-bike to use on the day - We had the most fun on the Orange that day, overall a great place to e-bike

Who of you knows the Bikepark Wales? What are your favourite spots?


Weitere Informationen

Website: www.bikeparkwales.com
Text & Edit: Alex Boyce | eMTB-News.de
Photography: Alex Boyce, Cinzia Montemaggi

This post is also available in: deDeutsch

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