Change of plan

Normally I’d say I love a Bank Holiday. Its a free day off. This time though its caused be a bit of minor stress. I’ve begun booking my accomodation for my cycle tour in May and it hadn’t occurred to me that I go away over the May Bank Holiday. Not a problem, I thought, when I did realise but 1. trying to find accomodation and 2. not paying through the nose for it has forced a change of plan.

So a couple of weeks ago I fired off my booking requests for just simple B&B’s that can lock up my bike and where I can get either an evening meal there or within walking distance. I had to do a bit of research and came up with 4 places for my 4 nights (I’m stopping at my parents on Day 4). This then lead me to think why could’t all the major booking sites like,, etc have a simple cyclist friendly filter like secure storage available for your bike alongside parking for example? It would make it a damn site easy to find somewhere for what I want. Anyway, I digress. Emails went off. Boom, Bala and Oswestry came back straight away. Booked. I waited and waited for Knighton and Aberystwyth, nothing. I sent the emails again, nothing so I began to find alternatives and it became very obvious, accomodation was limited and what was left was expensive. I don’t want to pay £75 B&B to stop in a posh cottage in the middle of nowhere nor do I want to pay it for a sea-view in Aberystwyth. I came up with a much, cheaper alternative on Day 2 by staying at the Borth Youth Hostel. Right on the seafront just a little further riding that day up the coast but I was struggling with Day 1. Knighton is small and limited. so I started looking further afield. All the local(ish) hostels were full. I had a think and came up with a change of tack. Look at the bigger towns which had a better chance of having somehwhere to stay and work around that. Machynlleth was was my first choice. Boom, found a place, just needed somewhere for Day 1 on the way there. I skirted around and found a cool place available in Clunbury, literally in the middle of nowhere (not far from Craven Arms) and that was that. Route changed, accomodation sorted.

day 3 - mach - bala
Day 3 – it will be the hardest day

BUT….my orginal idea was to get to the seaside. Day 3 to Bala was only 30-40 miles now so I’ve worked a coastal loop through Aberdovey, Tywyn, up towards Barmouth, jumping on the Mawdach trail to Dollgellau and then beasting myself, as I originally planned, over Bwlch-y-Groes. The distance has gone up to almost 70 miles so I’ve had to lose Lake Vyrnwy and the Hirnant Pass but I gain 30 miles of coastal, sea views, which in hindsight is probably better and a bit more manageable. Definitely a queen stage now for the views, ascents and gradients.

Here are the my new first 3 days

Day 1 – Bromsgrove – Clunbury

Day 2 – Clunbury – Machynlleth

Day 3 – Machynlleth – Bala


day 1 - broms - clunbury

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