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Bala to Barmouth via the mountains

BobScarleBobScarle Posts: 282
edited October 2012 in Road general
Yesterday I rode from Bala to Barmouth via two passes in the Aran mountains. From Bala I went through Cwm Hirnant to Lake Vyrnwy, round the lake and then towards Dinas Maddwy ending up at the top of the Bwlch y Groes. OK, so I didn't go the steep way up, but it was hard getting there. Hard or not, it was a fantastic ride through some lovely, and quite wild, countryside.

Now I am as guilty as anybody when it comes to training rides, head down, ride as hard as you can manage. But yesterday the ride was not about speed. It was about climbing some big hills and just enjoying being out in the clean, fresh air. And taking no notice of the sheep mocking my attempt at climbing.

Cwm Hirnant
Hirnant.jpg

Nearly at the top of the Bwlch y Groes. Yet another 20% climb.
Bwlch.jpg

Top.jpg

A wonderful ride, only about 50 miles, but I felt everyone of them. My average speed.....Who cares?

Just thought I would share a nice day out in the saddle.

Posts

  • hipshothipshot Posts: 371
    Nice photos. Got a real soft spot for Bala, Vyrnwy and the Berwyns next door.

    This is what its all about for me. Tough riding in stunning places.

    Ballls to heart rates and Strava segments
  • sub55sub55 Posts: 1,025
    sum of us call that home
    constantly reavalueating the situation and altering the perceived parameters accordingly
  • sub55 wrote:
    sum of us call that home
    Were you one of the sheep mocking my attempts at keeping the bike moving forward? :D

    Hipshot. Met a couple of blokes that sounded as though they were from your general area at Vyrnwy. Said they try to get rides around the area as often as possible.
  • Very beautiful... very envious!
  • farrinafarrina Posts: 360
    You are very modest as you forgot to mention the climb on the A470 towards Cross Foxes from Dinas which is a bit of a beast ( especially into a head wind).

    Of course after the Hirnant and Eunant passes you may have not noticed it :D

    Great scenery but you need strong legs ( and lungs!) around there.

    If you are based in Bala you can come back from Dolgellau via the Trawsfynydd Mountain Road which is SE of Trawsfynydd itself and keeps you away from traffic. Nice 50 miler route but not for the winter unless weather is kind.

    Nice photographs !

    Regards

    Alan
    Regards
    Alan
  • farrina wrote:

    If you are based in Bala you can come back from Dolgellau via the Trawsfynydd Mountain Road which is SE of Trawsfynydd itself and keeps you away from traffic. Nice 50 miler route but not for the winter unless weather is kind.

    Alan

    Traffic? Is there traffic up there? :shock:
  • farrinafarrina Posts: 360

    Traffic? Is there traffic up there? :shock:

    There certainly is plenty on the A494 between Dolgellau and Bala hence the recommendation to take the hilly route :D

    Regards

    Alan
    Regards
    Alan
  • Lived in Barmouth for most of my life, but only got into road biking recently (now live in reading)

    Will defintiely think about heading down there soon because i dont remember seeing that road, looks brilliant.
    Bikes: CAAD8 105, CAAD10 105.
  • BobScarleBobScarle Posts: 282
    Grechzoo. Go to Bala, car park at the top end by the Fire Station, and take the B4391. Probably less than half a mile out, after the bridge and the B4403, turn right up a hill towards Rhos - y - Gwaliau then just follow the road along the valley. The scenery is stunning.

    It is well worth doing and a ride I will repeat at some time once my legs have recovered.
  • iplodiplod Posts: 83
    Stunning ride!! Love this area, the Hirnant and Bwlch passes are about a 70 miler loop from my door. Beautiful ride!
    SOLITUDE. It's not for everyone.

    Trek 5.2 madone 2007
    Ribble audax/winter 2010
    Bianchi infinto 2012
  • Looks so dam cool, would probably kill me
  • Ron StuartRon Stuart Posts: 1,242
    This area I know so well, try this link and check out the movies below it....
    http://www.scarletfire.co.uk/2012/08/wi ... the-route/ :D
  • Ron Stuart wrote:
    This area I know so well, try this link and check out the movies below it....
    http://www.scarletfire.co.uk/2012/08/wi ... the-route/ :D

    thanks for the link to my site :-)

    Here's the direct link to my Wild Wales report, with the video that shows bits of the route as depicted in the photos at the top of the thread. It's also embedded in their official site now - http://www.wildwaleschallenge.com

    http://www.scarletfire.co.uk/2012/08/wi ... the-movie/
    Alan
    http://www.scarletfire.co.uk


    The Ultimate List of Strava Add On Sites!
    http://www.scarletfire.co.uk/strava-sites
  • BobScarleBobScarle Posts: 282
    Thanks for posting that, it really does look like quite a challenge! But what sad, twisted, fiend put the climb up the Bwlch y Groes after 115Km? That's just mean.

    25th August next year, if I can lose some more of this weight I will consider entering. Is the route different each year?
  • Ron StuartRon Stuart Posts: 1,242
    BobScarle wrote:
    Thanks for posting that, it really does look like quite a challenge! But what sad, twisted, fiend put the climb up the Bwlch y Groes after 115Km? That's just mean.

    25th August next year, if I can lose some more of this weight I will consider entering. Is the route different each year?

    Yep, did it after about the same miles in the 2007 WWC then down to Vyrnwy round and back up the Hirnant to Bala there were a lot of strong riders making a lot of funny noises going up the Bwlch :oops:

    Got to respect the parcours out here and some good news for those that like to ride the B4391 Milltir Gerrig:- the top road has been resurfaced :)
  • andy_wrxandy_wrx Posts: 3,396
    Audax from Corwen to Barmouth on Sun 20th
    http://www.aukweb.net/events/detail/12-941/

    Over the Trawsfynnydd mountain road
  • Ron StuartRon Stuart Posts: 1,242
    andy_wrx wrote:
    Audax from Corwen to Barmouth on Sun 20th
    http://www.aukweb.net/events/detail/12-941/

    Over the Trawsfynnydd mountain road

    Known as the 'Ranges'.

    There are two other rides the same day one of 100km, the other a 60km.

    Hope the weather is kind 8)
  • andy_wrxandy_wrx Posts: 3,396
    Late October, North Wales - whatever do you mean ? :lol:

    I notice the organiser says that lights are required - Sou'Westers as well I reckon !
    images?q=tbn:ANd9GcQr4p4S_jFW8oBFWNtA7uAxsSrSB7mrgS_o4h5PDIpVaBdrOuhEvA
  • farrinafarrina Posts: 360
    edited October 2012
    thanks for the link to my site :-)
    Here's the direct link to my Wild Wales report, with the video that shows bits of the route as depicted in the photos at the top of the thread. It's also embedded in their official site now - http://www.wildwaleschallenge.com

    Well blow me I thought the event had died a death when Mr Walsh retired from running it a few years back (I retired from riding it when Paul Olson finished organising it)

    H'm now that I am 50 next year I wonder if that might be an excuse to find some very low gears and reacquaint myself with torture of many a beastie hill ( including the ByG)

    Regards

    Alan
    Regards
    Alan
  • VelonutterVelonutter Posts: 4,749 Lives Here
    We went up the Hirnault and the Bwylch on this years Wild Wales, have to admit that the Hirnault was a bit of a shock on cold legs especially when it kicks up at the end!
  • canamdadcanamdad Posts: 188
    Nice ride report and pictures sent me scurrying for my maps to trace your route. I know what you mean about getting caught up in head-down, tongue to the front tyre rides. I too have found it really pleasant and perhaps what cycling is really all about when I just take it a little bit easier, enjoy the scenery, and really be in touch with where I'm riding. Thanks for the post!
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