The Answers You Need
The natural beauty and scenery is what attracts most people to the FoD so its not surprising that the mountain biking is not always flat. The main routes are all located within the Cannop valley and can provide relatively easy cycling despite its valley location. Most of the effort in climbing the hills are always rewarded with fantastic views of the landscape and most importantly a rewarding descent. If you do need to walk that’s no problem, just take your time and enjoy the wonderful surroundings.
A GOOD PLACE TO START ?
Cannop valley and the Sallowvallets area around Pedalabikeaway cycle centre.
Access to all the approved family trail, cross country trails and downhill tracks are located from here. Cycle centre opening times: Winter: November to March 9am to 5pm, closed Tuesdays . Summer: April to October 9am to 6pm, open every day. Post Code for Sat Nav is GL16 7EH
BEST PLACES TO RIDE ?
Speak to most biking visitors to the FoD and one of the most common questions asked is where are the best places to ride? To be honest the answer is simple, it depends on your type of riding otherwise just go and EXPLORE the Cannop valley!
If your not sure just ask around at the cycle centre. There you will find a great community of friendly bikers all year round.
TYPE OF BIKES ?
People coming to the FoD can be found on a variety of bikes from light weight cross country race bikes, single speeds and full on downhill mountain bikes. The key thing is that it should be in good working order, have a range of gears if you are taking on the hills, and good brakes for coming back down. The final key item is always wear a helmet! Cycle hire available at Pedalabikeaway cycle centre.
LEVEL OF RIDING ?
There is variety in the technical level of the trails from easy routes on hard pack tracks, through to gnarly single track descents. The Verderers Trail is 'BLUE' and the Freeminer trail is 'RED' classification. The DH tracks are 2/3 dot
WHAT TO BRING ?
The FoD does have some pretty remote areas so help might not always be just around the corner, knowing how to do a few basic repairs like mending a puncture can save a long walk. Finally don’t rely on your mobile phone to get you out of trouble as signal reception is not the best around the FoD.
TRAIL CLOSURES ?
Yes, sections of trails and downhill tracks are sometimes closed due to Forestry operations; don't forget the FoD is still a working forest. However every effort is made to implement diversions whenever possible.
Any other closures are mainly due to essential maintenance work.
Pedalabikeaway has plenty of car parking around the cycle centre both in the main car park and to the side of the large compound across from the centre where there is overflow space for busy weekends. All parking is charge for by the Forestry Commission to support the upkeep of the forest. Pay and display machines can be found around the car parks close to the cycling sign posts. For regular visitors it is possible to buy a year-long permit called the Discovery Pass . New 2017 parking charges can be found here
Dean Forest Cycles has its own free carpark
There are loads of accommodation in the FoD, different sorts to suit all wallets. Your choice is from self catering, pubs, hotels, B&Bs, hostels or camping. Wherever you stay in the FoD you should be able to do some great riding straight out the door, so you don’t spend the day driving round.