Monday, May 31, 2010

Brechfa - Gorlech - Dragons Breath

As sw.Wales is such a long way from home I decided that I'd make the effort, get my sorry butt outta bed bright and early on our last day at Nonni Barn, hit the Brechfa's red graded Gorlech trail and be back before breaky.  A great plan being back by 9.30am would mean getting up at 5am - gulp.  Ah well never mind, off to sleep I dropped.

Tick, tock, 5.15am and I'm wide awake - WTH!  I lay there and pondered a while before slipping from under the cover and to peep outside, the weather looked favourable so I figured WTH and saddled up.

The drive over the moor was a mix of clear skies and low sun into really thick "dragons breath" that made spotting the sheep and ponies tricky.  Popping out the top it was reminiscent of The Smoky Mountains, awesome.  20 minutes in the V-dub had me at the Abergorlech trail head with a couple of sleeping MTB campers for company.

The initial fireroad crank soon turns to a lovely steady singletrack rise that creeped up through the mist into the cool morning sunlight.  A warm up has NEVER been soooo INSPIRING.  It's not long before the climb ducks into the woodland and eventually you find the swoopy trail edging you into a middle ring crank, that's still climbing (just).  Oh my, now I'm smokin' and pop into a fab section of swoopiness that definitely make the climbing worth the effort.

Towards the end the red grading starts to glow purple as a trail steepens and switches back down the hillside.  There are a few techy bits to keep you on your toes and some of the descents egg you on into some serious speed.  Interestingly I found that the more speed you carry (if you dare) then the more sense the curves and "yumps" make.  They flooooooow brilliantly - well done to the trail pixies.

The views up top are far reaching and with the lifting mist I had to stop several times to gawp.  A couple of hours of fun later and I'm rolling past the still closed tent and start packing up.  A quick drive back over the moor to find that I'm back at base camp, a quick shower and I still have 10 minutes before another slap up breaky from Rosemary / Jim - you're the best.

Yeah the ride has a fair amount of fireroad climbs (most do) but some of the sweetest buff singletrack that you'll find upon this isle.  Sure Brechfa's trails are long way west but they're well worth the effort, I lurve it.

Alas no pic's, the camera got left back at the Magic Kingdom.

Posse: Farqui (5Spot) aka "Billy No Mates" that get up quite that early
Mechanicals: none
Weather: cool, clear and sunny
Injuries: none (note to self: must try harder)


Dangerous Dave said...

Great write up and sounds like a good ride! I know what you mean about things making sense faster, things flow so much better but sometimes there is that line you cross where you have to go a lot faster or you short stuff etc.