After the endless rain this autumn, we finally seemed to have a day at the weekend with good weather. To make the most of this James and I headed over the mid wales to ride the hyped Doethie Valley.

The route was very straightforward for the first half, with easy climbing up firetrack around the reservoir, and then a gate (which were all locked) ridden descent down to the start of the ride proper.

Nearing the end of the easy initial climb
Starting the gate ridden descent

Despite the gates making the descent frustrating, the autumnal colours and remote scenery were fantastic. At the end of the descent we arrived at a remote cottage where we turned off the main track and the ride abruptly got harder with a fairly steep ascent which marked the end of the significant climbing on the route. This was James’s first ride with his new groupset, and he certainly seemed to appreciate his new low gears!

It suddenly got steeper
Almost at the top
Fast rocky track to the start of the bridleway

The start of the descent was down the track, which was fairly loose with some abrupt drainage ditches. However we soon got to the start of the showpiece of the route, the long Doethie valley.

The descent was all fairly gradual, with some undulation. This enabled the single track descent to go on for what seemed like an eternity. It was just brilliant the entire way, and in the remote part of mid west wales we felt very isolated. The beautiful autumnal colours just added to the brilliance of the route.

The only downside was probably given away by the title of this post, the recent repeated deluges of rain have had a marked effect. Large parts of the route were very wet, with plenty of deep bog like mud. This made the ride physically much harder, and almost resulted in us both coming off, but did not ruin the enjoyment.

The start of the incredible descent
Descending the Doethie Valley
About to start bog roulette
Enjoying the singletrack
it just kept going!

Eventually we returned to civilisation as we joined another firetrack and then found farm. Our tired legs let us know about the rest of the ride on the final ascent back over to the reservoir we started from, and then an easy ride back to the car.

Heading back to the car
Total distance: 23.92 km
Max elevation: 446 m
Min elevation: 168 m
Total climbing: 697 m
Total descent: -691 m