New and improved 45km mountain bike trail re-opens in South Wales

21 October 2021  |  

Natural Resources Wales (NRW) has officially re-opened a new and improved long-distance mountain bike trail at Afan Forest Park in South Wales.

Afan Forest Mountain Bike Trails

Credit: Natural Resources Wales

The red graded (difficult) Skyline trail starts from Glyncorrwg Mountain Bike Centre and provides a challenging long-distance rider experience along a challenging 45km looped ride with sweeping views over the landscape of the Afan Valley and Pen Y Cymoedd Wind Farm.

The much-loved trail was closed in 2012 to allow the construction of the wind farm.

The reinstated and newly designed trail bypasses the major timber haul roads within the wind farm, and in response to feedback from tourism stakeholders and mountain biking visitors, provides a challenging technical trail suitable for mountain bikes and the increasingly popular e-bikes.

The project has been delivered through funding from the Welsh Government National Forest for Wales Programme,  and income derived from the sale of timber locally.   

Huwel Manley, Operations Manager at Natural Resources Wales, said:

“The reinstatement of the Skyline trail is a hugely positive step for Afan Forest Park.

“It adds another recreational attraction to an already popular park that encourages people to get outside, get active and enjoy nature.

“This trail will attract mountain biking enthusiasts from near and far, providing a much-welcomed boost to the local economy and tourism. For those that recall the original trail prior to the wind farm development, three new technical sections have been added, ‘Bow’, ‘Arrow’ and ‘Archer’.

“Afan Forest Park is an important asset that NRW and our partners are all committed to improving its recreational offer, in a way that works within the considerations of a working timber-production forest.

“In addition to the funding spent on this trail, NRW has also invested a further £180,000 on trail maintenance and improvements in the Afan Valley in the last 12 months.

“We are also in the process of recruiting a dedicated Recreational Officer to help meet the needs of walkers, cyclist and horse riders visiting the area following feedback from stake holders.”

Trails in Article

Afan Forest Park Trail Centre