With the rise in popularity of mountain biking in the United Kingdom, a number of excellent adventures are available for intrepid cyclists, from beginners to their more experienced counterparts. These are found all over the country and include extended biking holidays, shorter weekend trips as well as day excursions.
A variety of single tracks, scenic routes or downhill runs are available, catering for all disciplines of the sport.
Bike Park Wales
Established in 2013, Bike Park Wales is the first full scale mountain bike facility of its kind in the United Kingdom. Located at Gethin Woods in South Wales, it caters for riders of various experience levels. Designed by mountain bikers, it features 28 different routes including all weather courses, single tracks, downhill runs as well as family trails. Participants can purchase either a day riders pass or weekend ticket to enter the park.
All trails lead off from the same starting point with a lift system returning riders back to the starting area. A 4.6 kilometre single track is available for those who prefer a good climb back up the hill.
There are two tracks specifically aimed at those just starting out in the sport. "Badger's Run" is the easiest track at the park. It is a simple 1 kilometre cycle on a stony surface.
There are 8 intermediate tracks, including "Beast of Burden", the 4,6 kilometre track used to get back to the summit. The 0,6 kilometre "Bush Wacker" is a gentle downhill for beginners, helping them to learn this important discipline.
The park boasts 7 advanced tracks each with varying challenging combinations of sweeps, jumps and downhill sections. One of the standouts is the "A470". This comprises many different jump types including step ups, step downs and table tops.
Only for experienced bikers, there are 9 expert tracks at Bike Park Wales. The 1 kilometre long "Dai Hard" is one of the most popular. It features a number of technical segments.
These two courses are for professionals only and include "Join the Dots", considered to be the most technically challenging track in the park.
Riders are encouraged to improve their skills by participating in unique coaching sessions. These aim to improve various disciplines, allowing riders to become technically competent, thus making more options available for them to ride.
With over 30 campsites, hotels as well as bed and breakfast establishments in a 10 mile radius, those wanting to spend more than a day at the park are well catered for.
Wild Bike Mountain Bike Adventures
Offering various guided holiday packages all over the United Kingdom, Wild Bike specialise in the trails found in various British National Parks. These are aimed specifically at riders of intermediate skill level or above. Groups are normally kept to a maximum of 8. Trails take place over 2 - 6 days and include lavish accommodation as well as breakfast.
Scottish Highlands - Torridon All Mountain - 5 days, 6 nights
With the beautiful mountains of the Scottish Highlands as a backdrop, the Torridon trail is perhaps one of the most scenic in the United Kingdom. The trail moves through varied terrain, past local lochs and along the Scottish coastline.
The route includes tough climbs, extended descents as well as numerous segments to test riders technical ability. Those participating should have an above average fitness level.
Overnight accommodation is spent in a scenic lodge set above the loch at Torridon, a perfect setting to rest weary legs, recharging for the next day's adventures.
West Country Single Track Safari - 4 days, 5 nights
Less strenuous than the Torridon trail, the West Country Single Track Safari takes in the beauty of Exmoor, Dartmoor as well as the Quantocks, each offering a unique riding experience. Expect to ride through the rocky areas of Dartmoor together with exciting downhill sections at Lustleigh and Hound Tor. Exmoor provides a rich variety of scenery including stunning open moorland and the lush forests of Porlock.
Overnight accommodation is spent at a tent base camp on the banks of the Exe river. Enjoy an evening chatting about the day's trails or relax with a drink while watching a movie.
The Lake District All Mountain Trail - 2 or 3 days
If you like mountainous terrain then this trail is for you. Most trails situated in this area of the Lake District contain some very steep ascents. Other than stunning views, a highlight is the single tracks of Claife Heights, Coniston, Loughrigg and Great Langdale. Most of the single track sections are for experience riders only, taking place on trails filled with loose stones and large boulders interspersed with some fairly technical sections.
A private bunkhouse on the rise of Claife Heights provides overnight accommodation for weary riders, although this is not as lavish as some others on other packages on offer.
Wild Bike offers numerous other packages at competitive prices.
Specialising in biking holidays in the Scottish Highlands and the Lake District, Trailbrakes offer biking holidays or weekend packages.
Off Road C2C - 4 nights, 3 days
Taking in the Sustrans cycle route from Whitehaven to Tynemouth, this route provides a spectacular tour of the Lake District area including some of the Pennines. In fact, at some point you will be over 800 metres above sea level. Aimed at advanced riders, this trail requires superb levels of fitness as well as strong technical skills. This route can be undertaken as a guided or self guided adventure.
Highland C2C - 8 nights, 7 days
Not for the feint hearted, this biking holiday travels from Glenelg on the west coast to Stonehaven on the east coast of Scotland.
It takes in some of the most beautiful sights in the Scottish Highlands including the glens around the Cairgorm and Grampian mountains, famous for their plentiful wildlife. The trail also travels through the thriving pine forests of Caledonia while offering striking views of Loch Ness from the daunting Corrieyairack Pass.
This route, which covers over 8500 metres of climbing and descending, can be undertaken as a guided or self guided adventure.
N2E - Newcastle to Edinburgh - 6 nights, 5 days
A perfect route for intermediate riders, this holiday package includes the Kielder Forest single track, constructed especially for mountain biking. Cycle along the old Borders railway line into the Tweed Valley and finally to the Pentland Hills. This can be undertaken as a guided or self guided adventure.
Other than these regular holidays itineraries, Trailbrakes can design a biking holiday specifically for your unique requirements.