Decathlon Route: Cwmcarn
Easily accessed Welsh trail centre gold

Our Decathlon Route at Cwmcarn is all about maximising downhill singletrack time by cutting out the otherwise enjoyable singletrack climbs and using the Forest Drive to gain height as quickly as possible.

With that in mind, take the main trail entrance for Cafall et al and start the rolling singletrack climb up the hill until you hit the tarmaced Forest Drive road. There are a couple of options here; if you carry straight on up the Drive and past the gatehouse, you will cut out the singletrack climb and make rapid progress on tarmac until you get to the upper section.

If you take a hard right on the Forest Drive, you'll get to the top of the hill and the downhill trail and final bit of Twrch more quickly, but you do miss out a fairly lengthy and fun descent.

We'll head straight on up the Forest Drive past the gatehouse to make the most of the trails on this side of the hill. Keep climbing on the road until you finally get to the upper car park. If you fancy a play in the small bike park, bear left through the carpark and then onto the fireroad and continue til you pick up the trail on your right hand side, then climb up and pick from the descent trails on offer, otherwise rejoin the red descent straight ahead.

Once you've finished that section and come out near the road after the short, steep and rather sharp little climb, you'll have huge views over towards the Bristol Channel - and you can now pick which descent you'd like to do.

If you head down the road and then left, you'll get to the lower sections of Y Mynydd downhill track, but it's generally best to stick to the rest of the Twrch descent. There are some rather interesting and very technical wild trails that cross over the main red trail and head on down the hill, but these are best left to very serious riders as they're not maintained officially.

You can then follow the descent all the way back to the centre. As you'll have saved a bit of time here, we'd suggest following this loop with a full spin around Cafall on the other side of the valley. You'll definitely have earned your cake then...


Caerphilly County Borough, Wales NP11 7FE
United Kingdom

Trails at this centre

Jon Woodhouse's picture

Jon Woodhouse

Jon was previously the editor here at Whether it's big days out on the gravel bike or hurtling down technical singletracks, if it's got two wheels and can be ridden on dirt, then he's into it. He's previously been technical editor at, editor at What Mountain Bike Magazine and also web editor at Yes, he's been around the houses.

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