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31
4.6 out of 5 stars
The Good Mountain Biking Guide: England & Wales
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on 1 May 2011
I have a box of various maps and guides along with several regional guidebooks from a range of sources, including Bike Maps own guides to the Peak district, which are really clear and useful. So having one book with 500 mountain biking areas in it for England and Wales is an excellent idea and this guide does not disappoint. As well as providing routes for local areas, the guide has come in handy for finding routes in new areas I did not know about. It's also really motivating and makes you just want to get out and discover these great new routes! The book is clear, concise and practical, with straightforward easy to follow maps and instructions, including details of where to park, pubs, cafes, and trail conditions and gradients. Really useful features are atlas style maps with all the areas marked and the mini area maps showing where the route is in relation to major towns/villages. Trail centres are also covered, with a description of facilities and route gradings. All in all, at over 600 pages, this book offers incredible value with enough in it to keep all riders of all abilities satisfied.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on 2 June 2011
Now this simply stays in my car with the relevant OS maps. Ride regularly around South Downs and similar areas....and thought I knew most of the routes! Been VERY useful linking routes as well as highlighting new ones. Make a lot of trips to Afan, Wales and was impressed with the overall quality, coverage and detail this book offers. If you want to expand your riding with minimal 'thinking' then this is an essential purchase! Do it!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on 30 May 2012
I bought this book for my boyfriend as he has just treated himself to a new mountain bike. Now he is going through the book every other night planning his next trip. It is really good to get an idea of areas around you to head off to as well as areas further a field.
Only downside is it doesn't have a bike trail map so you pretty much have to figure it out for yourself when you get there but otherwise highly recommendable!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 18 October 2011
This is the best MTB guide book I've ever read. It's designed to stay in your car or at home to use as a reference for planning where to go for your rides. Not (as one reviewer suggested) as a map to take on the trails.

So, the way I've been reading it is when I want to go somewhere I simply pick this book up and look at where the best trails are that will be nearby. And that's exactly what you want from a reference book. It'll tell you a bit about the area and amenities such as pubs and tea stops, bike shops etc. It'll also tell you which OS maps you'll need when you get there. It'll also tell you about travelling there by car or train, and provide an overview map of the some suggested routes.

Great book, well written and informative.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 12 June 2011
I wish I had read this before I took my latest ride in the Lake District! It's intended to be a "check it out before you go" book, rather than one to use on the trail, and it fits this brief very well. There are good web references to bike parks, too. One review earlier questions who wrote this - I know one of the many people involved (and no, that's not me - I hadn't seen the book until a few weeks ago when I was given a damaged but still very useable copy), and I know (a) that they are mad keen mountain bikers themselves, (b) that this has been a major labour of love, and (c) they have recruited people from all over the country to put in their best locations and rides. So - check it out!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 12 March 2012
I love this little gem. If, like me, you'd rather spend time on your bike, rather than slogging through the internet, MTB mags and OS maps to map out a ride in unfamiliar territory, then this handy little compendium is a must-buy. It's also helped me venture out a little further into my local territory, with some really refreshing trail ideas. There's clearly a lot of local knowledge which has gone into compiling the trails in the book. The guide is best used in conjunction with a 1:25000 OS map, but you can get by navigating from the maps inclded in the book. I love the altitude data on the map....almost as useful as the pub locator (also included), but not quite!
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
on 7 April 2011
This book is great if you are being dragged away for the weekend (i.e.to visit relatives!) to some unfamiliar area, and want to know whether it is worth taking your mountain bike along. It gives a good overview of the options, and the web links to other local sources of info/guides is helpful. The guide is quite bulky, so you will need to get the relevant OS map (details given), or photocopy the page. It would be good to see the suggested routes graded by difficulty, and a bit more info on which way round to tackle some of the routes.
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on 2 March 2014
There are lots of fine books out there for mountain bikers but none quite like The Good Mountain Guide. It’s a weighty volume not intended to squeeze into your Camelbak next to the chain tool and spare inner. Rather than cover a single area, it covers England and Wales. And, rather than giving prescriptive directions, it offers an overview of the area with Ordnance Survey mapping with the legitimate trails marked on. This allows scope for the twin virtues of initiative and imagination to devise your own routes, although there are serving suggestions. The idea is that visiting an unfamiliar region, the book will kit you out with all the information you need to find the best base, the best trails, the best cafes and, for the confirmed bermbuster, the trail centres.

The book has a good geographical spread from the chalk streams of Sussex to the peaty burns of Northumberland with a huge sweep of downs, mountains and moors to sink your knobbles into. The photos are particularly good, with many fine contributions from muddybums and bogtrotters, especially. There is one shot that I think is outstanding, taken by Simon Barnes, featuring brightly-lit night-riders conferring in the forest like an illicit convention of wizards. If that doesn't make you want to straddle your steed and get Out There, I can't help you.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on 14 September 2013
Good for identifying an area to ride with route information that confirms that any unfamiliar tracks are at least potentially rideable. Coupled with my Satmap it is very useful.
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on 27 June 2012
I really like this book. If you travel around the UK on holidays or find yourself in parts of the country with time to kill and a bike in your boot then you must get this book.

I have a young family, and live in Yorkshire. We holiday on the south coast, in wales, and east coast quite often, and historically I wouldn't even bother taking my bike, certainly not my mountain bike, as even if I had time to go out, I'd never really know where to go or what to do and don't want to end up on dual carriageways.

But this book instantly gives you local knowledge, context and familiarity with an area which OS maps simply can't give on their own. So rather than have to cycle around roads and frustrating dead ends through farms where bridleways peter out, you can have confidence of getting a great ride in and seeing some great stuff that would otherwise escape you without the knowledge of a local rider.

Just buy it, put it in your glove box and leave it there. You'll find yourself thumbing through it time after time and it will deliver every time...and give you an escape from the family on those holiday where before you had none!
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