Hey there, adventurers!
As you know, here at 1085 Adventures we are absolutely obsessed with the beauty of the Welsh countryside. We love it all – from the mountains to the valleys, woodlands and moorlands – so we are delighted that Cycling UK has launched a brand new cycle path: Traws Eryri.
Launched on 23 August, Traws Eryri is a 122 mile (196km) path winding its way all the way from Machynlleth to Conwy, tracing through the less visited parts of Parc Cenedlaethol Eryri, through the Mawddach estuary, the forests of Coed y Brenin and Gwydir and past a number of abandoned quarries.
This new cycle path really captures the vibrant and varied personality of Wales as its mostly off-road trails trace through the mountainside, racking up 4,424 metres of ascent – that’s the equivalent of climbing Snowdon’s 1085 metre peak FOUR TIMES.
Indeed, this path is not for the faint hearted, with Cycling UK recommending tackling the path over three- to four days to ensure you’re not rushing past all of the magnificent sights. Cycling UK developed the path together with Natrual Resources Wales (NRW) with the intention of riding south to north, so that your journey ends by gazing out into the endless horizon of the coastline. Of course, you can do it the other direction.
The new path is long awaited, as the last time the Welsh landscape was reworked for new trails was over 30 years ago. Traws Eryri follows King Alfred’s Way, West Kernow Way and the Great North Trail.
While the path is open now to the public, there is still work expected to be done, as a section of the path currently involves taking the road, skirting Manod Quarry on the way to Penmachno. According to Cycling UK, conversations are underway with landowners to allow the cycle path to trace a similar vein to the Llwybr Llechi Eryri (Snowdonia Slate Trail) walking route, which would add magnificent historic views to the journey.
Apart from this road section, the trail is predominantly off-road, we recommend you select a hardtail mountain bike from our Snowdonia bike hire options. With the majority of the trail either ascending or descending, gravel bikes aren’t ideal as you’ll be pushing or walking alongside the bike rather than feeling the rough ride of the mountainside beneath you.
At this stage of develppment, there aren’t any trail markers, so we recommend that you download the free trail map and GPX file from Cycling UK before setting out, and contact us for recommendations on your bikepacking equipment.
There are plenty of refuelling stations along the way at the number of small towns and villages, with bikepacking-friendly pubs and inns with cycle wash and locking facilities. As those legs start to burn on the last few legs of each day, your desire for ice cream, coffee and a frosty pint will be soon fulfilled.
Does this trail sound like something you’d like to explore? There are many bike trails that wind across Eryri, and we’re always happy to provide advice on equipment, trails and whatever else you need to know!