Missing the Marin

So after a bit of reading up it turns out that the trail formerly known as the Marin, is now renamed the Gwydir Mawr with its smaller sibling, Gwydir Bach. Mawr is Welsh for big or large, bach means small. Marin bikes donated the cash to waymark the trail in 2002. No new funding meant a new name.

Above Llay Crasnant

Today’s ride was from the carpark at the Gwydir Mawr trailhead and then climbed up and along the side of the valley to the top of Trefriw and picked up the climb from the ride last Thursday in the rain. The forecast today was much better and there was even a chance of seeing the sun.

Weather forecast

The same close to 5 miles of climbing before the first descent and this time much more rideable trails with lots of fireroad double track before the first sections of singletrack.

Fundamentally the Marin trail seems to be so changed that the original trail can be hard to detect. This might be because every time I rode it I parked in Betws and did the bastard steep tarmac climb up to the trail crossing which I think equates to the bit located in the photo below.

That different entry point to starting the old trail and a hazy memory means it just feels strange. Close to 20 years of tree growth and felling means the landscape views are different too.

The final descent is a proper blast and a lot of fun with lots of drop offs and a decent jump line. There were a few trees still down across the trails since Storm Arwen, but the section that was closed in October for felling was opened again. Looking forwards to joining the Gwydir to Penmachno trails in the summer.

Author: Cris Bloomfield

Usually mountain biking in the North.

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