Machynlleth in mid-Wales is an ideal destination for a mountain biking holiday. There is plenty of accommodation, lots of pubs, cafes and other activities. There are three cross country routes starting in Machynlleth (Mach 1, 2 and 3) and in 2005 a new trail, the Climachx route, was opened to the public.
"The existing cross country routes located south of the town, Mach 1, 2 and 3, had proved very popular with both locals and visitors, so we wanted to develop a new route in the Dyfi Forest north of the town and to make it accessible without having to travel by car, therefore reducing traffic congestion in the town and helping to reduce carbon emissions.
We approached Forestry Commission Wales who manage the forest with an initial idea to waymark some existing trails but these were not suitable. So, we sought funding and were able to build new mountain bike trails in the Dyfi Forest, now home of the Berghaus Dyfi Enduro competition.
The Climachx trail is a 15km round trip, with 9km of built single track with an array of challenging technical aspects. The last descent is the longest in Wales and features rocky jumps and the 'eye of the needle' - a huge jump with a narrow landing between two trees on the other side. The finale is a sequence of eight huge swooping corners following quickly after each other. There's also plenty of informal free-riding in the forest.
Although there is a car parking area at the start of the trail, it is accessible from Machynlleth by bike. Both the main town car park and the local bike shop, The Holey Trail, provide maps of how to cycle from town to the start of the trail. The route to Climachx from Machynlleth is a quiet country lane and the total distance is a little over 4 miles. The route indicated for bikes is not open to cars and other traffic."
"The cli-machx has been open since 2005 and two extra sections were built in 2006 with financial assistance from WCVA and Powys County Council as part of a youth employment project. We are hoping to build more in 2007.
To sample other trails, Machynlleth is ideally situated midway between Coed y Brenin and Nant yr Arian, both Forestry Commission Centres with extensive trail networks. For a serious cross country challenge, you can ride the first half of Mach 3, then cross country to Nant yr Arian, round the trails there and then back to Machynlleth via the second half of Mach 3."
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