The BikePark Wales crew and MBUK Staff ride Roots Manoeuvres

Our verdict on BikePark Wales’ new red trail, Root Manoeuvres

Rooty by name and nature, BikePark Wales' latest red graded trail is a natural-feeling wake-up call for those expecting an easy ride

There seems to be a bit of a back-to-basics revolution going on with bike park trails these days. Those in charge are realising that what most of us like riding best is real dirt and not manicured pathways. It’s one of the reasons why spots like Revolution Bike Park and Black Mountain Cycle Centre have become so popular – they provide a natural challenge that’s been missing from many trail centres in recent years. BikePark Wales’ newest full length trail follows in that vein. Although there are plenty of rock drops and sculpted berms on offer, the diggers have left things raw so it provides a proper MTB challenge from top to bottom.

Mike Beasley jumps off a tree stump at BikePark Wales
The trail starts off fast and flowing in the open before diving into the gnarliness of the forest. Credit: Andy Lloyd

The trails

Root Manoeuvres is just one of a huge network of trails at BikePark Wales. Gradings range from green to double black and trails vary in length from 0.1 – 4.6km in length.

At 2.5km long, Root Manoeuvres is one of the longest continuous descents in the bike park. It’s graded red (advanced), so a good level of riding skill is required. The challenge it poses isn’t so much jumps and gaps, but finding traction in the natural unsurfaced corners, looking for lines and negotiating tree roots, of which there are plenty!

Whether you’re a first timer or a seasoned pro, BikePark Wales has something for everyone. Click here for a map of the trails.

MBUK Staff members Alex Evans and Ed Thomsett ride a jump into a berm at BikePark Wales
MBUK staff members Al and Ed sampling the goods. Credit: Andy Lloyd

Essential information

Get there

BPW is located in Gethin Woodland Park, just off the A470, 20 minutes from junction 32 of the M4. The postcode CF48 4TT will get you to the roundabout you need to turn off from. A day pass without uplift costs £8, with uplift is £32.50 (weekdays) or £38 (weekends).


Parking, cafe, toilets, shower, bike shop, bike hire, bike wash, uplift service, skills coaching, GoPro hire

Alex Evans rides Roots Manoeuvres at BikePark Wales
Rooty? Yep you could say that. Credit: Andy Lloyd


 Closest Bike Shops

BPW has its own shop on site, complete with expert mechanics, suspension tuning and bike hire.

MBUK Staff Writer Ed and Mike Beasley rail a berm in BikePark Wales
When the berms look this perfect, you just can’t resist railing them. Credit: Andy Lloyd

What else is nearby?

Forest of Dean

The Pedalabikeaway centre has (uplifted) DH runs and two waymarked XC routes.

You can book uplifts here

Black Mountains Cycle Centre

With massive jumps and loads of trails, the BMCC is a great uplift destination if you have a need for speed.

Click here for more info and booking.


Two awesome XC trails and two fun DH tracks with an uplift service run by Cwmdown.

The original Y Mynydd downhill track has just had a facelift and is well worth checking out.

The BikePark Wales crew and MBUK Staff ride Roots Manoeuvres
Twisting between trees, dodging roots and feeling the wheels slide over the rocks, Root Manoeuvres is a proper grin-inducing challenge. Credit: Andy Lloyd

MBUK’s verdict

Why ride here?

The UK’s widest selection of all-weather downhill trails, all ridable on trail bikes.


  • Flowy, exciting, well-maintained trails with loads of variety
  • Speedy uplift service
  • Lots of happy people to get you stoked!


  • BPW can get busy at the weekends
  • You have to book your space on the uplift well in advance
  • Wet weather can make the trail a pretty muddy affair. But who’s scared of a bit of mud, eh?
Rowan Sorrell rides a rock drop at BikePark Wales
Root Manoeuvres is full of features to keep you on your toes. BikePark Wales director and trail builder extraordinaire, Rowan Sorrell, shows us the way. Credit: Andy Lloyd

The bottom line

BPW’s new red trail is a wild and wonderful departure from the hardpack and paved tracks you expect to find at a bike park. The rocky, muddy and rooty surface will keep you on your toes and challenge you at every opportunity. If you manage to nail the perfect line down the hill, you’ll be rewarded with a sense of accomplishment and achievement normally reserved for the sort of backcountry or off-piste gems everyone likes to keep quiet.

To read our full report on Root Manoeuvres, check back to issue 349 or pick up a copy of the latest mag to keep up with our monthly Wrecking Crew reports.

Find out more about the latest issue HERE. You can subscribe to MBUK here and check out our Facebook, Instagram and Twitter accounts for all of the latest mountain bike action.


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