The Wales Dirt Dash is a self-supported bikepacking event in the historic county of Brecknockshire (Breconshire) in Wales, split over two days with an overnight camp on 1/2 May 2021, starting and finishing at the Tafarn Y Bont Pub in Govilon near Abergavenny. It’s the perfect way to experience the rugged beauty of Wales with fine off-road cycling, camaraderie and camping (and maybe castles).
The event will be held for the first time, but here’s what the participants said about our event in Dunoon:
‘Bikepacking is kind of new to me but everyone was so helpful and I have definitely come away learning from it. The whole event was very well organised by very friendly bikers and couldn’t fault any part of it. I will be back.’
‘A truly awesome weekend, unlike any cycling experience I’ve had before, and Markus + Charlie should be proud to have created such a great atmosphere.’
The basics you need to know before entering:
- When: Saturday 1 May to Sunday 2 May 2021
- Format: non-timed, self-supported reliability trial with overnight camping
- Route: around 125km with ca. 2200m of climbing. The provisional route can be found here
- Entries: £85
- Navigation: The route will be supplied electronically before the event. The course is not marked, you are responsible for your own navigation.
- Bikes: mountain bikes (e-bikes are allowed, but we cannot guarantee charging points) which must be in good working order. For skilled riders gravel bikes will be an option, but for the course we recommend bigger tires than in Dorset or Dunoon
- Terrain: Singletrack, gravel paths, forestry roads, public roads, cycle paths and terrain without an obvious route choice
- Start: 9am at the Tafarn Y Bont Pub in Govilon
- Finish: Saturday afternoon/evening at the Tafarn Y Bont Pub in Govilon
- What is provided: Rider briefing, route for navigation, campsite & evening meal on 1 May, goodie bag, broom wagon
- Camping: We provide a suitable place to pitch your tent with other riders, toilets, drinking water supply, catering. Assume that there are no other facilities (shop etc.) on site.
- Food: Riders will be provided with a complimentary evening meal. Vegetarian, vegan and gluten-free version are available on request (please let us know when you sign up). You need to bring your own bowl, mug, fork and spoon.
- Minimum kit: Helmet, front and rear lights, sufficient water, emergency blanket or sleeping bag, waterproof jacket, first aid kit, phone or GPS for navigation, multitool, spare tube, tire levers, puncture repair kit, tent/bivvy bag/tarp. You need to carry all your own kit.
- Insurance: You will need your own insurance.
- Refunds: No refunds, but you can insure your entry. You can transfer your entry up until the closing the date.
How to get there
By bike: Once at Abergavenny Train Station, it’s about 5km to the start.
By train: You can take the train to Abergavenny and cycle from there to the start. For timetables and fares check the National Rail website.
By car: Govilon is near Abergavenny in the Brecon Beacons, South Wales. If you are coming from the South or East, use the M4 which leads you onto the Heads of the Valleys and then finally the A40.
Parking: There is NO parking at the start. We recommend staying in Abergavenny on the Friday or at the Old Station Hub in Talybont on Usk.
There are plenty of options to stay in Abergavenny. We can also recommend the Old Station Hub, which offers plenty of accommodation, including bunk beds, bell tents and camping. It is run and owned by keen cyclists. Please check out the website for more information.
Registration & Rider Briefing
You need to register for the event. Registration is open on Friday 30 April from 7 – 9pm at the Tafarn Y Bont Pub or from 7.30 – 8.30am in the morning on Saturday 1 May. All riders MUST attend a rider briefing at 8.30am.
Here are a few more rules:
- Stay cool, be nice, don’t hurt yourself or others.
- If you don’t know what is around a corner, assume it’s a steep drop-off.
- Cycling on public roads carries risks and that you are aware of these risks.
- All bicycles in your party will be ridden safely and responsibly at all times.
- You will obey the law. Whilst using public roads, all riders must observe the Highway Code. If cycling off road, please stick to the route and exercise due care to all other users.
- Cycling at night is more dangerous, all bikes will not be ridden at night unless lights are used.
- A cycle helmet must be used at all times.
- You understand that bicycling is a hazardous activity. You understand that the sport of bicycling and the use of this equipment involve a risk of injury to any and all parts of the user’s body. You agree to freely and expressly assume and accept any risks and all injury to the user of this equipment while bicycling. You understand that bicycle protective gear such as helmets and gloves are recommended, but they do not eliminate the risk and may not reduce the risk of injury in the event of an accident.
- You agree that you will release the organisers from any and all responsibility of liability for injuries or damages or to any other person. You agree not to make a claim against or sue this organiser for injuries or damages relating to this event.
- It’s not a race.
- Don’t be a dick.
- You allow us to film and photograph you and use those images for promotion or documentation.