Forest of Dean Mountain Biking Trails

Forest of Dean Mountain Biking Trails

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Location

Contact Number
Country
County/State
Trail, Centre or Base
Address
Gl16 7eh
Directions
Situated on the B4234 New Road.OS Grid Reference: SO 624 114
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The Forest of Dean MTB trails (FOD) is based in Gloucestershire. Base yourself at the Cannop Cycle Centre where you will find the Pedalabikeaway cafe/shop/workshop and bike hire.

There is the Verderers Blue mountain bike trail (with optional red sections), the Freeminer Red trail with recent extension, a green family cycle trail, a skills area, a pump track, a kid-friendly skills loop, an all ability downhill mountain bike trail designed for 4 wheels as well as 2 known as Launchpad, the Orange graded Sallowvallets Downhill area with 10+ runs to choose from and lots of natural trails. 

In April 2017 they opened a new skills area, a pump track and extended Launchpad so now the 4 wheel gravity bikes can start at the top of the hill where all the 2 wheel bikes do. 

Cycle Centre

  • Here you will find Pedalabikeaway www.pedalabikeaway.co.uk who have a cafe/shop/workshop and bike hire facility. There are toilets and showers and plenty of parking.

Family Cycle Trail - Green

  • This 11 miles of (18km) trail consists of eleven miles of waymarked, surfaced tracks, most of which are on former railway lines.

Verderers - Blue

  • 7 miles (11km) of rollable trails suitable for beginners. Fast flowing out corners, big berms and rollovers. It's graded blue with some optional red descents. Great descent on the dragon's tail. It's built by Rowan Sorrell and his Back on Track team and rides well even in the wet.

Freeminer - Red

  • The Freeminer 6.5km trail had a 2.5km extension (used to be 4km) in 2014, and a further 4 km's in September 2015. It is natural singletrack the whole way. It has rooty technical climbs, steep rooty sections to descend down, small drops, hairpin bends, rock sections and switchbacks. The new extension includes two tough climbs, three descents, berms, switchbacks, narrow natural singletrack, timber north shore and jumps.
  • In April 2015 a new section of Northshore opened.

Launchpad

  • An all ability downhill trail built as much for 4 wheels as 2. 
    • The Launch Pad trail was funded by The Gloucestershire Environmental Trust and the Forestry Commission. Built by Architrail and supported by Pedalabikeaway and the DTV.

Sallowvallets Downhill

  • The downhill section has also had a lot of work and has a number of marked short runs (about 15 mins to push up max) catering for many downhill skills. 
  • Ski Run - Drops in through big rocky and rooted sections with fade drops. Into a fast set of turns, a hip jump, the popular tabletop, berms and road gap. For 2017 they modified the bottom of Ski Run with 2 new berms and an extra tabletop. A bit later in 2017 we should see a new top section to Ski Run so it begins at the start mound.
  • Sheepskull - Through the top 'bus stop', then jumping into and out of a bombhole, over some roots onto the middle fire road. Flying on down from there, loads of challenging roots tempt you into breaking, then anchors off into the final fast 'motorway' section. 
  • Corkscrew - Jumpy top section leads into a fast rooty bottom section, then swooping through a valley and over the finishing hip jump. Please note: The bottom hip jump has been reshaped and moved back from the fire road after a number of recent accidents - take it easy on your first run through! In 2017 they have finished a top section to corkscrew also corkscrew has been modified to run into bottleopener
  • The Good the Bad and The Ugly - Drop off's, step ups and fast flowing jumps. For 2017 GBU has an alternate line that avoids the drops called "Drop Dodger"
  • Flatland - A separate top section, Flatland is ideal to lead into the bottom section of Sheepskull. Rooty corners darting past tree stumps lead into a sharp drop onto the middle fire road.
  • Endo - Endo darts down from the middle fire road level, through tight rooty switchbacks and into a fast open bottom section with a tabletop and a small step down drop. 
  • Cougar Root - The Cougar Root delivers the Forest's fair share of loam, with long, drifty corners and roots. Plans are afoot to do work to finish off this track from top to bottom. 
  • Corkscrew 2 - A jumpy alternative to Corkscrew's top section, berms and jumps are in season here. 
  • Mr Rooty - As the name suggests.
  • The OC - OC is currently overgrown and no longer rideable. 

Four New Downhill tracks were built in 2014

  • Two of the new trails are mainly natural, with very minimal amounts of actual building, with a line marked out, catch berms made where needed and let the rest cut itself in! The other two trails have some bigger manmade features like drops and jumps but built in a way that makes them a challenge to even the best riders. A mix of long low jumps, lips that kick you to the sky and some very awkward transitions should really sort the better riders out from the bunch. Berm to berm jumps and berms ending early with meter-high drops will be in there. Also, 2 of the 4 have a steep rock roll in, while the other two start on trails that already exist but aren’t currently accessible with the uplift.

Uplift

  • Fly Up are the only official MTB uplift service at the Cannop Cycle Centre.  

Skills Area

  • New for 2017 a Skills Area has been introduced with 2 lines. One line is for drops and the other one is for jumps.

Pump Track

  • New for 2017 they introduced a progressive pump track for all ages.

Kids Skills area

  • As the name suggests a great place to hone those early skills for kids and beginners alike.

Local Natural Trails

  • Don't forget aside from the trails are 42 square miles of natural single track, well worth a visit alone.

Cycling Groups and Clubs

  • Dean Trail Volunteers are the local trail building group who work in partnership with the Forestry Commission. They have been pivotal in taking the development of these trails forward. Most of the tracks (FC are responsible for Family Trail and Verderers) at the FoD are built and maintained by this handful of volunteers who also finance all the materials (relying on donations) and with 250,000 riders a year hitting the trails keeping the ever-growing trails in good condition is an ever-growing logistical challenge so why not get involved and lend a hand.
  • BigFoot MBCRoyal Dean Forest Cycling Club for rides etc.

Other Stuff

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  • If you have ridden these mountain bike trails at the Forest of Dean then why not share your experiences with us and write a short review, favourite the trail or add some pictures and videos to the listing.

Resources

News

13 visits

Photos

Forest of Dean - Start of the Verderers Trail

Map

Swap Start/End

User reviews

83 reviews

 
(66)
 
(16)
 
(2)
2 stars
 
(0)
1 star
 
(0)
Overall rating 
 
4.7
Grin Factor 
 
4.8  (83)
Trail Variety 
 
4.7  (83)
Skills Development 
 
4.5  (83)
Trail Quality  
 
4.7  (83)
Facilities 
 
4.8  (82)
Freeminers and Verderers xc trails
Overall rating 
 
4.5
Grin Factor 
 
4.5
Trail Variety 
 
5.0
Skills Development 
 
4.0
Trail Quality  
 
4.0
Facilities 
 
5.0

this place is brillliant. we did 2 laps, one of the blue (verderers) and one of the red (freeminers)

did a quick lap of the skills loop first then started on the Verederers trail which was fun good singletrack. fast berms and a few options to get air (all rollable) there was a couple of red options on the way round that were cool. a lap of the blue first was a nice way to get the legs going.
we had some tasty cake from the cafe and then went to the freeminers trail. much more technical from the start with a short rooty climb. gets the heart going right away, on the day we came it was not long after the heavy snow had melted and the rain had come down so the red in places was very muddy and hard to ride. still loads of fun even with the mud. the descents were fast and technical. a mixture of mud, roots and rocks. enough trail features to keep you on your toes and wanting to go and do sections again. it looked like there was alot of natural trails coming off of the waymarked routes.
nearly run over some wild boar at one point also!

User Review

Good Points
trails are well maintained
the right level of features on the trails
lots of different levels of ability catered for
tasty cake
Bad Points
cant think of any
Would you recommend?
Yes
B
Report this review Comments (0) | Was this review helpful to you? 2 0
Like a second home
Overall rating 
 
5.0
Grin Factor 
 
5.0
Trail Variety 
 
5.0
Skills Development 
 
5.0
Trail Quality  
 
5.0
Facilities 
 
5.0

The best place to ride!!!
Lots of women's rides and their kids club is brilliant!!!

User Review

Good Points
Top notch for trails, leisure, learning new skills or catching up with friends. This place offers everything you need for a great day or evening on the trails.
Fantastic cafe..great food and service.
Bad Points
Cafe can get very busy and slow down service. Car parking is great most days but get there early, especially if there is an event on.
Would you recommend?
Yes
Z
Report this review Comments (0) | Was this review helpful to you? 1 0
Just perfect!
Overall rating 
 
5.0
Grin Factor 
 
5.0
Trail Variety 
 
5.0
Skills Development 
 
5.0
Trail Quality  
 
5.0
Facilities 
 
5.0

I would thoroughly recommend the Forest of Dean & pedalabikeaway as the best trail centre in the UK.

User Review

Good Points
Everything about the FOD is just great. Trails are fantastic & really well maintained by the DTV. There’s everything from the green Family Trail, the blue Verderers, to the challenges of the downhill trails, & miles & miles of single track through the forest. You can get 1st class coaching as well with world champion, Katy Curd. (Other coaches are available!) Cafe is really good & the coffee is excellent. I’m fussy with my coffee! ?
Bad Points
None.
Would you recommend?
Yes
AC
Report this review Comments (0) | Was this review helpful to you? 0 0
superb trails
Overall rating 
 
4.9
Grin Factor 
 
5.0
Trail Variety 
 
5.0
Skills Development 
 
5.0
Trail Quality  
 
5.0
Facilities 
 
4.0

Love the place

User Review

Good Points
superb trails - especially considering that there's no full time trail crew, just volunteers of the DTV
DTV constantly working on a huge variety of trails and constant development of new lines including a new skills area and pump track
regular races
pedalbikeaway shop and workshop offer good service
It's all free to ride ( just pay to park)
Bad Points
cafe food and drink is ok but so expensive it's difficult to justify. how much of that goes into the trails? next to nothing is my guess.
Would you recommend?
Yes
TT
Report this review Comments (0) | Was this review helpful to you? 0 0
Splendids
Overall rating 
 
5.0
Grin Factor 
 
5.0
Trail Variety 
 
5.0
Skills Development 
 
5.0
Trail Quality  
 
5.0
Facilities 
 
5.0

Have been coming along to FoD for a number of years and now the kids are of an age, they are ripping Verderers. The missus even took the plunge and had some coaching with Katy Curd.

The centre is well featured, with a top notch café, showers, water and tools.

User Review

Good Points
Great for kids & families
Smashing café
Well maintained yet natural trails
Bad Points
Parking can get a little cramped at Cannop but this is countered by the additional parking at Beechenhurst.
Would you recommend?
Yes
SM
Report this review Comments (0) | Was this review helpful to you? 1 0
Can't beat it
Overall rating 
 
5.0
Grin Factor 
 
5.0
Trail Variety 
 
5.0
Skills Development 
 
5.0
Trail Quality  
 
5.0
Facilities 
 
5.0

I've travelled around but 9 times out of 10 have regretted not just going to the fod

User Review

Good Points
Great riding xc or downhill.
Would you recommend?
Yes
MB
Report this review Comments (0) | Was this review helpful to you? 0 0
A Bit Of Everything
Overall rating 
 
4.7
Grin Factor 
 
5.0
Trail Variety 
 
5.0
Skills Development 
 
4.0
Trail Quality  
 
5.0
Facilities 
 
4.0

An hours drive for me and my favourite riding spot.

User Review

Good Points
Great variety of trails, from waymarked blue and red graded trails, to the selection of downhill tracks which are short, but sweet. Best of all though are the miles and miles of off-piste natural trails. Get out with a guide or a local and see for yourself.
Bad Points
Could do with an extension on the toilet/showering facilities.
Would you recommend?
Yes
MP
Report this review Comments (0) | Was this review helpful to you? 0 0
Great variety of trails
Overall rating 
 
4.9
Grin Factor 
 
5.0
Trail Variety 
 
5.0
Skills Development 
 
5.0
Trail Quality  
 
4.5
Facilities 
 
4.5

The Forest of Dean offers a huge variety of trails that'll entertain everbody from dowhillers to enthusiast kids. It also offers huge scope for progression; you can take on techy single track, different style jumps, blast the uphill or get lost on an epic in the forest.
FOD is a great place, That's well staffed for the whole family.

User Review

Good Points
Extensive and varied trail network.
Friendly and knowledgeable staff.
Great for all abilities.
Not overly groomed.
Bad Points
It can get busy, but once you've parked, it's easy to escape the crowds.
Would you recommend?
Yes
DE
Report this review Comments (0) | Was this review helpful to you? 1 0
Top trails
Overall rating 
 
5.0
Grin Factor 
 
5.0
Trail Variety 
 
5.0
Skills Development 
 
5.0
Trail Quality  
 
5.0
Facilities 
 
5.0

It’s the third trip to the FoD this year and I just wish we lived nearer. Great variety of trails and they are all smooth as. Just perfect

User Review

Good Points
Well maintained trails
Stunning location
Every trail keeps you grinning
Bad Points
None
Would you recommend?
Yes
C
Report this review Comments (0) | Was this review helpful to you? 1 0
Overall rating 
 
5.0
Grin Factor 
 
5.0
Trail Variety 
 
5.0
Skills Development 
 
5.0
Trail Quality  
 
5.0
Facilities 
 
5.0

Love it

User Review

Would you recommend?
Yes
R
Report this review Comments (0) | Was this review helpful to you? 0 1
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