On Easter Monday, 17th April, a few of us are off on a ride around the eastern side of the beautiful Brecon Beacons, taking in the Tumble AND Gospel Pass climbs in the same day.
The plan is to drive to and start the ride from the little village of Llanover which will give us 5 miles / 8 km to warm our legs up before tackling the Tumble (3 miles / 5 km / avg gradient 7.5%). When we reach the summit it's then 4.4 miles / 7 km / -5% avg grad descent all the way to Clydach to the start of an eight mile / 13 km / avg grad 3% climb up the Llangynidr Mountain. The section from Beaufort to the village of Llangynidr (mile 17 to 24, km 27 to 38) is talked about in this guys blog
. When we reach the summit we are rewarded with another 4.4 mile / 7 km but -6% avg grad descent.
The next 18 miles are pretty much flat. We shall be stopping for a lunch break at mile 35 at the Honey Cafe
in Bronllys. This will give our stomachs 8 miles / 13 km / half-an-hour in which to start to digest our lunch before we start our ascent, without oxygen, of the north face of the Gospel Pass, whereupon in order to avoid the descent on the south face due to it's poor state, we shall about turn and partially retrace our steps as we make our way 4.8 miles / 7.7 km / -5.5% avg grad down to level ground, well level for 6 miles / 9.7 km until we come to the final climb of any note, a little 3 miler / 4.8 km / 3.8% avg gra.
It's then more-or-less downhill all the way for 16 miles to Abergavenny where we shall take our second tea-break but not at our old favourite the Oasis snack bar, no, this time we shall be taking afternoon tea at Annette's Cafe
From Abergavenny it's then 5 miles back to the cars, load up the bikes and go home.
The complete route is a smidgen over 81 miles / 130 km in length with 6,650 ft / 2,027 m of climbs. The pace will be "steady" on the flat bits, as quick as you are brave enough to go on the descents, slow-to-glacial on the climbs.https://ridewithgps.com/routes/19631799
What better way to burn off all those Easter Egg calories and immerse yourself in some awesome Welsh countryside. If you'd like to join Andy (DJRudec), Richard (BikeRichard) and me (Gary) on this spectacular ride, let us know.
We are aiming for a 9 am start from Llanover. According to Google maps, the quickest route from north Bristol is M4 to Junction 25A Newport then A4042 all the way to Llanover. Normally a 45 minute journey, there might be more traffic as it's Easter and so possibly a delay at the toll booths.
I estimate the ride will take around 8 hours in total, including stops and refuelling breaks.