Hadleigh Park Mountain Bike Trail Centre

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Trail, Centre or Base
Address
Hadleigh Park, Chapel Lane Car Park, Chapel Lane, Hadleigh, Essex, SS7 2PP
Directions
Hadleigh Park is located at Chapel Lane Car Park, Chapel Lane, Hadleigh, Essex, SS7 2PP. Follow signs to Hadliegh Country Park (very poorly signposted)
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Hadleigh Park mountain bike trail centre is based in Hadleigh Country Park in Essex, England. Famed for being the home of the 2012 mountain bike Olympic Games, it has been converted as part of the Olympic Legacy and is open and can be ridden by the public (no need to book in advance). It opened on the 29th April 2015.

There is a a red trail (with black options) which was the Olympic course as well as a blue, green and all ability trail.

There is also a pump track and a decent skills area.

Olympic Mountain Bike Course (Red with Black sections)

  • Since the games they have retained and developed the 2012 Olympic mountain bike course. It's open to everyone and is 5km long made from crushed sandstone. They have worked well with the terrain to create both technical up-hills and descents. Some are quite steep, many rock gardens, a northshore section and tight berms.

  • The majority of the Olympic mountain bike course is classified as red apart from 6 black features including the Triple Trouble, Deanes Drop, Leap of Faith, Oak Tree, North Shore Gap Jump and the Final Descent sections.

Blue Trail

  • The Blue trail at Hadleigh Park is 4km long and for novices. The red and the blue trail share many of the same sections. The blue which is for novices is more flowing and features berms, switchbacks and a dual slalom section.

Multi-User trail (Green)

  • The green trail is a multi-use trail. Pedestrians have priority so keep aware. It surrounds the northern perimeter of the park and bisects the marsh reaching as far as Benfleet station to the west and Hadleigh castle to the east. It is approximately 9km and is more accessible to families but does contain some steep climbs and decent.

All Ability Trail

  • The all ability trail is 1.3km long and has a gradient of less than 12:1 so it is more suitable for people with physical disabilities. The all ability trail takes in views of the Olympic Mountain bike trail, Hadleigh Castle, the country park and the Thames Estuary.

Pump Track and Skills area

  • There is a neat little pump track as well as a decent skills area with different progressively sized drops (some quite big), rocky sections and rollers / jumps. 

Club and Groups

The Hub

  • The Hub is what the Visitors Centre is called. Core to the adaptation and as part of the community consultation was to make this more of a community hub to be a Gateway for all the outdoor activities on offer here at Hadleigh be it cycling or walking etc. It features a cafe, rangers offices, childrens play area, toilets, changing rooms and a community room. Bike hire and shop will be available from July 2015.

Other Stuff

  • Car parking is £1.50 per hour, capped at £6 for anything over 4 hours. The trails themselves are free to ride.
  • The car park and toilets are open between Dawn and Dusk (8am – 8pm in Summer and 8am – 5.30pm in Winter). Staff will always be on site between 8am and 5.30pm.
  • Since London 2012, Essex County Council, along with Active Essex, have been developing Hadleigh Park into a sporting venue as part of the Olympic legacy.
  • Architrail trail builders converted the olympic track to make it a defined trail centre accesible to the general public. 

Share and Review

  • If you have ridden the mountain bike trails at Hadleigh Park then please share your experience with us and write a short review or post your photo's or vids to the listing.

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Hadleigh Park Mountain Bike Trail Centre

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User reviews

9 reviews

 
(2)
 
(7)
3 stars
 
(0)
2 stars
 
(0)
1 star
 
(0)
Overall rating 
 
4.0
Grin Factor 
 
4.2  (9)
Trail Variety 
 
3.3  (9)
Skills Development 
 
4.2  (9)
Trail Quality  
 
4.3  (9)
Facilities 
 
4.3  (8)
View most helpful
Hadleigh Park
Overall rating 
 
4.1
Grin Factor 
 
4.0
Trail Variety 
 
3.0
Skills Development 
 
5.0
Trail Quality  
 
4.0
Facilities 
 
5.0

I coach at Hadleigh and it's a great place to ride and coach. Brilliant features to build skill on, not sure you'll find man made features like it anywhere in the UK.

User Review

Good Points
Hadleigh park is great for fitness building with its hills and if you work it right you can session some of the features. Makes a great coaching venue for teaching riders as well.
Bad Points
The hills, if you aren't that fit our don't ride much it's hard work and can take the enjoyment out of it.
Would you recommend?
Yes
C
Report this review Comments (0) | Was this review helpful to you? 1 0
Overall rating 
 
3.9
Grin Factor 
 
4.0
Trail Variety 
 
2.5
Skills Development 
 
4.0
Trail Quality  
 
4.5
Facilities 
 
5.0

Would recommend this place to anyone but have to remind you that it's not easy here and to wear a crash helmet!!

User Review

Good Points
Tough, twisty, fun and a decent workout. An all weather location with Stunning estuary views. Loads of other trails near it too. It's right in my doorstep.
Bad Points
It needs some more subtly added in technical sections to the existing trails.
Needs more trails.
Would you recommend?
Yes
C
Report this review Comments (0) | Was this review helpful to you? 1 0
Reflecting after a great afternoon pumping the Olympic 2012 Trails
Overall rating 
 
4.7
Grin Factor 
 
5.0
Trail Variety 
 
4.0
Skills Development 
 
5.0
Trail Quality  
 
5.0
Facilities 
 
4.5

Three Ladies all the way from near Brighton in East Sussex.
Did we enjoy our weekend at Hadleigh? Oh yes, yes we did. Three ladies with good skills celebrating ones 50th birthday found the trails engaging, technical at times and very very ride able despite rain one day and frosts the next. The scenery was fantastic and the trails were well designed and had good surfaces throughout. We would have liked longer trails and better directional markings at key points and a hot shower to finish. That said. It was just brilliant to be riding the Olympic 2012 Park where we sat one sunny day way back watching in awe those skillful riders who blazed the trails and showed us how it should be done.

The Salvation Army Cafe was really well run, warm and friendly and a welcome stop off between trail rides. Toilets were super clean and the whole park facility was well laid out with ample parking at a very reasonable rate. Just wish I could have parked up overnight in our motor home so that we could have maxed out our time here.
We would happily have paid for an over night stop with electric hookup, something for the organizers to consider in the future perhaps as there is so much room to do so.

Thank you to all for a very welcoming venue.

User Review

Good Points
<div>Access, parking, Cafe, Shop and ride able trails whatever the weather. Friendly staff, super clean well run facilities.</div>
Bad Points
<div>No showers, would have been nice to clean up and warm up after a wet cold day. No overnight Motor home parking facility despite the massive car park</div>
Would you recommend?
Yes
JG
Report this review Comments (0) | Was this review helpful to you? 0 0
Orange Crush-RS ride at Olympic Park
Overall rating 
 
4.7
Grin Factor 
 
5.0
Trail Variety 
 
4.0
Skills Development 
 
4.5
Trail Quality  
 
5.0
Facilities 
 
5.0

ok so not exactly the blackest runs, but seriously it does not matter you are riding the 2012 Olympic MTB park....!!!

you get to ride some of the iconic rock sections, board walk and drops pass through the rabbits holes, watch out for the 2012 markers and grin! the slalom is a must to go head to head with your mates.......

This is a fast XC track that caters the entry level armature to the full on pro. Ride at you own pace to get the most out of it.

the tracks are clean and clear well maintained.

We could not believe how quite it was and yet so close to London.

Cracking Café, with reasonable prices. car parking is bit higher than advertised in many places £6 is what we paid. Useful bike store on site.

To get there follow directions to the country park (the post code seems to put you down a lane).
once there, from the centre follow round to the left through the gates, you should see 4 flag poles (START). the track follows right to the top of the hill and you can see the magnificence spread before you (take a moment). down the hill to you right you should see the podium and flag poles.
that is where you are aiming for. ones on the track follow Anti-clock for the rest of the day :-)

thee is a short blue loop just after the slalom, it is worth a visit no matter you level. fast free flowing down and gentle rise back up. interesting touch or two of black.

the rock gardens are perfect for tall bikes, 29s etc. but watch your chain rings if you are a shortie.
there is a lot of evidence of chain ring grain on the rock.


Ridden on Orange Crush RS, revolution 140mm, Conti Mountain kings
my local track http://www.oneplanetadventure.com/

User Review

Good Points
it is the 2012 Olympic MTB park (Grin)
good trail markers point direction once on track
Bad Points
GPS post code leads one down a lane.
Would you recommend?
Yes
G
Report this review Comments (0) | Was this review helpful to you? 1 0
Overall rating 
 
4.0
Grin Factor 
 
4.5
Trail Variety 
 
4.0
Skills Development 
 
4.0
Trail Quality  
 
4.0
Facilities 
 
3.0

Rode here recently and was very impressed. There were a few bits still being finished when I visited but the hub seemed very nice. My mate rented a bike from the shop and was very happy with it, especially at £13 for 2 hours.
We set off and found the skills area which was a nice warm up. Then set off looking for the start of the trail, I'm not sure if we missed a sign or what but took a while to find it. Signage in general could do with being a bit more obvious.
Once on the trail we were very impressed. We did a lap of the blue first then went round again to do the red. The features on all grades were fantastic and easy enough to push back up and do it again. Hadleigh park is going to be seeing alot of me!
Biggest let down however was after the ride we went for some cake in the cafe. There wasn't any! They did some hot food and a few other bits but a big slice of cake after a ride should be the law!

User Review

Good Points
Line options- choice of red/black features
Fast
Can session sections easily
It was the Olympic course.
Bad Points
Signage a little poor
To many people cutting corners.
Cafe didn't have cake!
Would you recommend?
Yes
B
Report this review Comments (0) | Was this review helpful to you? 0 0
Legacy done
Overall rating 
 
3.9
Grin Factor 
 
4.0
Trail Variety 
 
3.5
Skills Development 
 
4.0
Trail Quality  
 
4.0
Facilities 
 
4.0

It's taken 3 years but the Olympic mtb trail is open to the public and it's excellent.
Probably not long enough for the mountain purist but it's got a great variety of technical sections and some fast flowing trails especially when dry. There are short steep climbs that make you blow before the downhill rewards. The skills section is a good warm up. The visitor centre is excellent and the car park fees are changing to £1.50 an hour. Definitely worth a visit.

User Review

Good Points
New trail with decent technical features
Good car park and visitor centre
Variety for riders of all abilities
Bad Points
Quite short
Walkers
Idiots going wrong way
Would you recommend?
Yes
G
Report this review Comments (0) | Was this review helpful to you? 0 0
(Updated: June 06, 2015)
Overall rating 
 
3.5
Grin Factor 
 
4.0
Trail Variety 
 
3.0
Skills Development 
 
3.0
Trail Quality  
 
4.0
Facilities 
 
4.0

Overall good fun and worth another trip of 50 mins each way for me

User Review

Good Points
Compact and a good workout .Nice views when taking it easy .Trails not too busy and with a decent carpark and reasonable coffee prices I guess it will be a winner.Harder than it looks so expect sore legs
Bad Points
Sign posting to an official start would be helpful .Red trail would have been nicer with a longer lap maybe with some flat sections to enable a group to get back together .
Signage outside the venue virtually non existent ,very poor
Would you recommend?
Yes
TS
Report this review Comments (0) | Was this review helpful to you? 2 0
Short but with some real bite.
(Updated: October 11, 2015)
Overall rating 
 
3.8
Grin Factor 
 
3.0
Trail Variety 
 
3.5
Skills Development 
 
5.0
Trail Quality  
 
3.5
Facilities 
 
4.0

I visited Hadleigh Park the day after it had opened. The car park is big so they are planning for busy which I sense It will be. The small pump track at the entrance is confidence building and the skills area consisting of rocky sections, jumps and three progressive large drops is really spot on. I spent a good 20 to 30 minutes warming up here and didn't bore.

Then we headed off to the find the trail head. This is impossible to find and leads a bit to chaos as you ended up joining the trail randomly not sure which direction to ride in. This is just teething errors. Once on the trail the signage is good but fails at the first post unfortunately. A good 20 mins was wasted here searching. My recommendation is if not obvious when you arrive just join the trail at the first opportunity even if mid trail.

We did a lap of the blue first. The lap is short but fun. The best feature is the dual slalom so out can race your mates. NB most of the blue is also part of the red so if you did the red you will still do the dual slalom. Some of the descents on the blue are quite tight (feel like tight switchbacks) and lack a little flow. I think to make these more confidence inspiring for novices theses should have the corners built and banked up a bit. You feel like you are descending on flat corners. Still saying that there are still really good other fun sections with flow.

The red is also short but fun. It's technicals in nature and more tricky than fast and flowing. With rocky descents, north shore sections, and technical up hills and some steep descent sections. The black sections (there are 6 as offshoots of the red trail) are quite severe but then again this is the Olympic track.

The great thing about this trail centre is the blue, red and black really form the same trail they are just predominately different options on that same trail. This is great as you could go with three mates of differing abilities and each have a blast.

Recommend a minimum of two sessions and probably three if the third doesn't start to bore. It's great for skills progression, is technical (mostly has easier options alongside making it progressive in nature) and so has some bite. Given the height limitations (still a puff to get up) and length though and why it was originally built they have packed a great amount in. I think it is a brilliant addition to the south east of England MTB community of trails and will add to one of my regular choices to alternate on in the weekend.

User Review

Good Points
- skills park
- facilities
- technical and progressive
- ability to session lots throughout
Bad Points
- short
- can't find trail start
- cafe food is not mtb friendly
- blue could be more flowing.
Would you recommend?
Yes
S
#1 Reviewer 89 reviews
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hadleigh mtb
Overall rating 
 
3.6
Grin Factor 
 
4.0
Trail Variety 
 
2.5
Skills Development 
 
3.5
Trail Quality  
 
4.5

Being a local Hadleigh Farm and the downs are somewhere i've ridden a lot, including pre- build during build and after the event, there are some good places to ride just outside of the olympic course also. The olympic course shouldn't be confused with a trail center (YET ?) because its a race track, not a trail....the features are tricky and big and designed to slow people down, not like a trail with features that are designed to blast off for fun, bear that in mind when you ride here, it only just touches on small downhill type sections with small xc type sections linking them its neither one or the other, hopefully when the revamp has been done there will be a lot more entertaining sections to session like some doubles, table tops, etc

User Review

Would you recommend?
Yes
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