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Jon Brooke

Route Outline

The route of the Autumn Epic takes riders on a grand tour of the county of Radnorshire, which stretches from the Welsh Marches into mid-Wales and the start of the Cambrian Mountains.

Radnorshire is sparsely populated, so there is little by way of urban riding – just a quick exit from the small border town of Knighton and a trip through the equally small Rhayader – and very little traffic.  The entire ride takes place on public roads - most of which are very quiet country lanes.  The road surfaces are pretty good, especially  considering the low levels of car usage, although there may be the occasional muddy patch if tractors have been busy!

The scenery is stunning and offers some of the finest road riding anywhere in the country – but if you like it flat then you should probably look elsewhere!  The route does include a couple of gentler interludes – but these are really just short linking stretches between upland ranges.  The map below is of the 2005/6 route - in 2007 we will be changing the final section from Gladestry, and making one or two tweaks elsewhere...

The route outline singles out a few of the more significant climbs:

The sharp efforts of Bwlch-y-Sarnau give a hint of the climb out of Abbey-Cwm-Hir that follows shortly after.

The Elan Valley Mountain Road is well known to locals as a testing climb, but the reward is a breathtaking descent and the lovely circuit of the Elan Valley.

Coming relatively near the end, the 20% ramps around Glascwm Pitch will be interesting, as will the final climb into Knighton, which wouldn’t be so demanding if they weren’t encountered with tired legs...

photos by Jon Brooke