A true natural gem - Doethie Valley

A true natural gem - Doethie Valley

Trail of the year

Doethie Valley

Nominated by Jamie Darlow

Making Doethie Valley our trail of the year was a tough call. It’s a mission to get to, two-thirds of the loop is on double-track and it seems to be suffering under the volume of traffic and notorious Cambrian weather. Even the singletrack alongside the Afon Doethie – the reason people come here in the first place – isn’t above criticism, thanks to several sections of marshy bog and a few areas of erosion in desperate need of repair. So why should it deserve such plaudits? Well, on a sunny day, following a spell of dry weather, the quality of the singletrack and the tranquillity of this beautiful and intimate valley are unrivalled.

Trails of distinction

Trails of distinction

Jamie sums up the experience; “It’s a relentless climb up to the top of the Doethie Valley, round the side of the Llyn Brianne Reservoir and up the byway at Soar y Mynydd, but it gets the climbing done with some epic views for visual relief. The descent’s just as relentless too — a full-on phantasmagoria of singletrack that hugs the side of the valley, delivering roots, rocks and off-camber fun. The highlight: an amazing section of rocky slabs to roll and jump as you please.”