Clayton Vale MTB Trails

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3.9 (31)
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17 reviews with 4 stars

31 reviews

 
(7)
 
(17)
 
(6)
 
(1)
1 star
 
(0)
Overall rating 
 
3.9
Grin Factor 
 
3.8  (31)
Trail Variety 
 
3.5  (31)
Skills Development 
 
4.1  (29)
Trail Quality  
 
4.1  (31)
Facilities 
 
4.2  (31)
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Ratings
Grin Factor
Level of fun had, or to be had
Trail Variety
Variety of specific trail or overall trail centre. Mix of obstacles, berms, jumps, drops, shore etc.
Skills Development
Did it develop or push your skills and leave you with more to come back and learn
Trail Quality
Are the trails well built /maintained using sustainable techniques?
Facilities
From cafe post ride grub to bike wash. Did it meet your expectations?
User Review
Comments
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17 results - showing 1 - 10
1 2
Ordering
great for a quick blast
Overall rating 
 
3.9
Grin Factor 
 
3.5
Trail Variety 
 
4.0
Skills Development 
 
4.0
Trail Quality  
 
4.0
Facilities 
 
4.0
top trail

User Review

Good Points
Its amazing to have this so close to the city centre. If im stuck for time I like to use it for training for XC racing doing a few laps [3 or 4] its a good simulation of a race. Good for the cardio. I can't fault it. Considering it there for free. there are a couple decent sized dropoffs. I reckon its good for people who are new to MTB. I think it good for a family ride too with options for easy rides and picnic areas. Hardtails fine for this. Even ridden the red on my rigid CX bike which is great fun. [missing out the larger dropoffs] Cycle centre nearby with good parking and facilities
Would you recommend?
Yes
T
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Clayton Vale still holds it's own
Overall rating 
 
3.9
Grin Factor 
 
3.0
Trail Variety 
 
4.0
Skills Development 
 
5.0
Trail Quality  
 
3.5
Facilities 
 
4.0
A fantastic resource for Manchester.

User Review

Good Points
Even the easy routes are good for building fitness, purpose built routes so challenging and varied. The friends group run a great little cafe in the Education centre, and they do their best to pick up litter and create a welcoming environment. Good if you want a quick blast for a couple of hours. Also has the national cycle centre at the other end and a skills area in Philips Park, that alone is great for kids.
Bad Points
Occasionally there are pedestrians on the routes who haven't understood the segregation. This is on the fringe of urban Manchester so there are some social issues. The site does get a bit of hammer but I have never experienced any hassle here.
Would you recommend?
Yes
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Overall rating 
 
3.6
Grin Factor 
 
3.0
Trail Variety 
 
3.0
Skills Development 
 
4.5
Trail Quality  
 
3.5
Facilities 
 
4.5
Worth a ride if you live locally

User Review

Good Points
Mix of blue, red & one black trail. Good for an hours or so's riding. Good facilities at the Cycle centre, Evans shop, cafe, etc & small cafe at the Clayton Vale entrance for cheap coffee and food. It's a good place to brush up and learn skills but don't be expecting anything like you would get in Wales since it's an inner city trail.
Bad Points
As it sits between Newton Heath & Clayton people tend to dump stuff from the housing estates onto the park. Also you will come across kids & dog walkers coming the wrong way up trails occasionally as they seem to think they are short cuts through the park! If riding in the evening I would recommend riding as a group and not alone.
Would you recommend?
Yes
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Excellent small scale trails, provided for free.
Overall rating 
 
4.3
Grin Factor 
 
5.0
Trail Variety 
 
4.0
Skills Development 
 
5.0
Trail Quality  
 
3.5
Facilities 
 
3.5
I would like to see a community that looks after the trails as well as rides them.

User Review

Good Points
This is an amazing set of local trails in a city environment. The place has been built with real skill to offer loads of great trail fun in a small plot of land which is shared with general public. They've done a fantastic job of squeezing so much in - and this is for free!
I hope it inspires some local kids to get into mountain biking and develop the health benefits and responsibility to the environment that goes with it.
Bad Points
Because of its location, it is prone to being used for dumping rubbish (at one entrance at least) and I get the impression that people feel the maintenance of the trail is all down to Eastlands Trust or whoever runs the Velodrome. It would be nice if people could realise that it's also their responsibility to lool after it and as much as you don't want to clean up after other people, it would be better than letting litter become a problem.
Would you recommend?
Yes
G
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Excellent innercity trails
(Updated: October 02, 2016)
Overall rating 
 
4.1
Grin Factor 
 
4.0
Trail Variety 
 
4.0
Skills Development 
 
4.5
Trail Quality  
 
4.5
Facilities 
 
3.0
In response to a couple of other posters, my ratings are rating it for what it is (an urban biking centre) and are not done in comparison to proper trail centres.I'm a regular mountain biker. Ride in the Lakes, North Wales, Peaks, as well as trail centres such as Llandegla, Coed y Brenin, Gisburn etc. Given what they have to work with, this is an excellent little set of trails. They make great use of what little elevation they have and the reds and blacks/orange have enough going on that you need to think and have your wits about you. Probably not worth travelling to in the way that you would travel to one of the big trail centres, but for something that is local and easily accessible for Mancunians these are excellent. I've ridden here maybe 20 times and only once had any kind of issue with potential "trouble" and in fairness that was just a bunch of youth hanging out and not (as far as I saw anyway) actually causing any bother. If you turn up expecting a Gisburn or a Llandegla you're probably going to be disappointed. If however you rock up looking for a fun and relatively skills demanding set of trails (particularly if ridden at speed) that you can zip around on your lunchbreak, or after work, then you'll be happy with what you find. 

User Review

Good Points
Fast, flowy, fun trails, with enough technical bits to keep all but the most proficient mountain bikers interested.
Real climbs, it's a good old workout
Nice skills area to practice/play
Short red/orange/black bits have enough of the consequence factor to keep me interested anyway
Easy to get to from Manchester city centre
Next to Cycling centre so secure(ish) parking and facilities on hand (incl a bikeshop)
Bad Points
Not many really, other than its not a full blown trail centre in the mountains (duh!)
Maybe that it is in a somewhat dodgy area of Manchester, but I've never had an issue and never heard of one through mates who ride there or the local biking forums that I spend too much of my time on..
Would you recommend?
Yes
B
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Better than a lot of people make out!
Overall rating 
 
4.1
Grin Factor 
 
4.0
Trail Variety 
 
4.0
Skills Development 
 
5.0
Trail Quality  
 
4.0
Facilities 
 
3.0

User Review

Would you recommend?
Yes
G
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A Fantastic Facility for the Mancunian Rider
Overall rating 
 
4.4
Grin Factor 
 
4.0
Trail Variety 
 
3.5
Skills Development 
 
5.0
Trail Quality  
 
5.0
Facilities 
 
4.5
Clayton Vale is a brilliant facility if you're local come and visit on a Saturday morning or have a post work blast!

User Review

Good Points
I have been riding these trails a couple of times a week now for about eighteen months.

Living in Levenshulme means I can ride almost entirely off road through a busy city and have a traffic free blast on my bike - it's perfect if you live nearby.

The trails are really well designed. You have to go fast to really get the best out of them, but they're still enjoyable/challenging for less speedy riders.

The descents on the Blue are really flowy if you can corner well. If you can ride drop offs and pump well, the descents on the reds are just as good too!

A lap of the dark blue followed by a lap of the red with the orange decent thrown in is nice work out and test of skill on a Saturday morning.
Bad Points
Some people have moaned about locals/dog walkers, but I rarely encounter anyone else on the trails and haven't had any problems.

These trails can't really be compared with somewhere like Penmachno or Gisburn you're never going to get rough naturally varied trails in a park in central Manchester! They've done an incredible job really.

Some people have complained and said they're too tame - personally I think these trails reward technical skill and better you are the more you can enjoy them. I'd love to see a video of someone really going for it - I bet there's loads of possibilities if you're good enough to exploit them!
Would you recommend?
Yes
F
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Great for building skills and confidence
Overall rating 
 
3.8
Grin Factor 
 
3.0
Trail Variety 
 
2.5
Skills Development 
 
5.0
Trail Quality  
 
4.0
Facilities 
 
5.0
Great facility

User Review

Good Points
I think this is an outstanding facility for an inner city area. I use it a lot when I've only got a couple of hours free and it has been a great help to me in rebuilding confidence after a bad crash and in improving my MTB skills. I haven't been doing this long and I've found both Clayton Vale graded trails and the Skills Park to be great places to build confidence on several different types of trail features, especially drop offs, berms and tight switchbacks. Plenty of flights of steps to mess about on too, although I'm sure that's not really what they're for...
I started on the Skills Park and the Blue trails, quickly progressed to the Reds and then the Orange and Black. I'll continue going, even though there's nothing new, because it's the kind of place where you can then start working on improving your flow and speed. The Velodrome facilities are great, good cafe with friendly staff, great to watch BMX events going on inside and Evans run a decent bike shop on site with helpful staff.
Bad Points
As somebody else said, there probably could be more in the way of jumps, as the opportunities that are there on the trails tend to be closely followed by drop offs and berms. I'm sure there are plenty of skilled riders who could negotiate these sections with air and speed, but I think I've got a long way to go...
I know they have limited space, but I'd like to have seen longer Black and Orange runs. I find the Black good fun, but it's over almost as soon as you've started!
Would you recommend?
Yes
C
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A great surprise!
Overall rating 
 
4.3
Grin Factor 
 
5.0
Trail Variety 
 
4.0
Skills Development 
 
3.5
Trail Quality  
 
5.0
Facilities 
 
4.0
Clayton Vale turned out to be a real surprise. A great, high quality facility in the middle of what seems to be a city suburb.
The trails are very good quality, if a little too smooth, it is mountain biking after all. The drainage is good and they looked liked they have been built to last.
Short punchy climbs, lead on to long sweeping burms and switchbacks which just seem to go on and and on. They have managed to fit a lot of action into such a small place. I ride an Orange Single Speed, and this place suited me perfectly.

User Review

Good Points
1. Good quality, very well designed trails
2. You seem to be going downhill more than climbing, a good thing for me!
3. Good mix of trails for all abilities
4. Great location and parking allowing you to take a look around of the rest of the National Cycling Centre
5. Good separation from other users of Clayton Vale
6. A load of big grins of the faces of my mates after a couple of hours on the trails. All giving the place 10 out of 10.
7. This is a great place for novice / intermediate riders looking to improve their skills
Bad Points
Not many really:
1. It could be more technical on the Red Sections. Great fun but not that challenging for an experienced rider
2. The blue route was just a little too smooth, a few strategically placed rocks would probably liven things up a bit and sharpen the senses.
3. The Cafe is a tad on the pricey side. (Manchester City Centre prices!)
Would you recommend?
Yes
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An awesome little fitness loop
Overall rating 
 
3.9
Grin Factor 
 
4.0
Trail Variety 
 
3.0
Skills Development 
 
3.0
Trail Quality  
 
5.0
Facilities 
 
5.0
This is a really good little fitness loop. Considering the area is pretty flat, they've managed to pack in enough sharp steep climbs to test your fitness and enough features to make the trail interesting. Sometimes it feels like they've tried to pack in too much - how the hell are you supposed to pump rollers when you're trying to pedal up a hill?? And some of the rock gardens feel a bit pointless. But I think the fitter you are, the more the trails will flow. But there's so much here for beginners and the trails are so well surfaced, what more could we ask for right in the centre of Manchester!! I used to walk my dog here years ago and never dreamed it would be how it is today.

User Review

Good Points
Locals seem quite friendly so far. If the trails start to become overgrown (nettles!!) you can report it and they will send someone out to trim it back.
Bad Points
There is quite a lot of glass in places just off the trail.
Would you recommend?
Yes
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17 results - showing 1 - 10
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