Rode the new ‘Loop 2’ mountain biking route at Penmachno yesterday and was rather under whelmed. I love the original loop, which is more than worth the journey and honesty box price alone, but the new one feels very ‘pedally’ and uneventful. There are seemingly no real downhills or places where you can pick up free speed (which the original loop has in abundance). The only real highlights are that this time of year saw one of the sections appear like a kaleidoscope of autumnal colours which, besides making me sound camper than a row of pink tents, was jolly impressive. Apart from that the only sections of note are the ‘bomb blast section’ (I simply called it that because all the trees are down) that offers some good views of Snowdonia and the ‘flinty’ section where the track swoops you up between two trees.
In retrospect, I think I’d rather ride loop 1 twice than do the extra 14km of loop 2. If you are looking to get miles in to your ride, by all means add loop 2 to your day (total length of both loops is 17.66 miles – took us 3hours 45mins going at a leisurely pace) but otherwise I’m sad to say I felt it was a bit of a waste of bike time. Ultimately, can’t help feeling that rather than the sign at post 122 saying ‘Loop1’ (left) and ‘Loop2’ (right) it should just be marked ‘Fun’ (left) and ‘Fitness’ (right)…

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