Brenig ride from the Welsh Festival of Cycling

Brenig ride from the Welsh Festival of Cycling

Chester and North Wales

This is one of the most poplar rides when the CTC Cymru Welsh Festival of Cycling Gŵyl Biecio CTC Cymru is held in Ruthin, North Wales.

It is a ‘café to café’ or ‘coffee, tea & cakes’ route with several opportunities for café stops in the summer (in the winter opening times should be checked particularly at the Brenig Centre) but you will have to work for your tea stops! As it goes in to relatively remote areas spares, food etc should be carried; there will be sections of the route where there won’t be a mobile phone signal.  The route sheet should be read as it contains information regarding gradients and the on & off road options.

The route starts from Ruthin Rugby Club and climbs out of the Vale of Clwyd along quiet lanes passing through Bontuchel and then along the riverside to Cyffylliog. Once you leave Cyffylliog it climbs steadily through Pennant & Nilig (which will be marked on the map, but you can be forgiven for not realising you have passed these places as you ride).  As you gain height the moss and lichens become more noticeable on the stones and older trees by the road side. Once in the forest you have to decide whether to take the roughstuff route through the forest to cross the dam or drop down to Pentre-llyn- cymmer and ride back up to the Brenig. The GPX follows the rough stuff route; the directions for the on-road option are given on the route sheet.

Although it is only a fairly short distance from the Ruthin most riders make the most of the opportunity to refuel and enjoy the views across the reservoir at the Brenig Vistor Centre Café.  There is also a bike hire facility and shop at the Brenig and many people enjoy the off road routes around the reservoirs.

The ride continues for a short distance on the shores of the reservoir before re-joining the road and climbing past the Sportsman’s Arms. It then turns right across the moors to pass the Aled reservoirs, and on a clear day there are fantastic views.  As a reward for all of the climbing there is a long descent to Llansannan (sometimes said to be ‘7 miles from everywhere, including heaven’).  There follows a scenic and undulating ride along the lanes through Bryn-Rhyd-yr-Arian to Henllan, then a descent to Denbigh where there are several good cafes to choose from (although the choice is more limited on a Sunday).  Those with the energy may wish to explore the town & castle before resuming the route which passes the old North Wales Hospital; a listed building which has suffered several fires whilst waiting for redevelopment.  After a short steep climb to a cross roads you ride down the west side of the Vale of Clwyd before crossing over the A525 to Llanynys. Those in need of more refreshment may choose to call in at the tea rooms in Rhewl or wait until they return to Ruthin where there is a range of cafes.

Download GPX file of route 
Level of ride 
Type of bike 
Road bike