Pannier_Tours_Brooks-England

Our Borders Tour defines escaping by bike.

From the industrial heartlands of Birmingham - home to the Brooks England saddle-making factory - we head straight out to the Heart of England countryside before riding off along the Border, into the wild expanses of mid-Wales, on a point-to-point journey taking in single-track touring roads and less-discovered tracks. After exploring the historic region of Radnorshire and the stunning Elan / Irfon Valleys, we finish in the quirky events town of Llanwrtyd Wells after a wild-swim...

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At the end of each of the first two day's riding, you'll arrive into our Pannier Camps, free to gather around the campfire or our tipi(s) for communal drinks. On the final evening, we'll be recouping in remote bunkhouse style accommodation. Off-the-bike highlights include the Brooks England Tour (on the Brooks 'Break-In' version), a number of wild swim opportunities, numerous abbey and remote bothy coffee-brewing stops, local delicacy sampling, campfire cooking ... and bog-snorkelling?

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So, what has industrial Birmingham got to do with Mid-Wales? Back in 1892, not long after Brooks England had started making saddles at their factory, the Birmingham Corporation Water Department took a big punt and bought 45,562 acres of Elan / Claerwen River gathering grounds in order to dam and flood the valleys; a response to rapidly growing demand for clean water. The impressive engineering scheme was opened in 1904 and, ever since, water from the Caban Coch, Careg Dhu, Pen-Y-Gareg and Craig Goch reservoirs is carried by gravity the 117km to Birmingham, via the Elan Aqueduct...

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Note. this is a mixed-terrain route and cannot be ridden on a road bike with less than 30c tyres. The optimum would be 35-40c. You can always drop us a private message - basecamp@pannier.cc - for more queries on this. We are offering a full HIRE package for our Tours, including bike...

 

  • Day 1 (BROOKS BREAK-IN)

    Birmingham > Shropshire HillsApprox. 30km
    Meet in Birmingham for a tour of the Brooks England Factory and custom saddle. From there, we'll transfer out to a Pannier Camp in the Shropshire Hills, hand out bikes & kit and head off on an initial trial ride: Long Mynd "England's Little Switzerland" before heading back for dinner & social...
    Included: Brooks Tour, Lunch, Accommodation
  • Day 1 (PANNIER)

    Shropshire HillsApprox. 30km
    Meet in the Shrophire Hills, from where we'll head to Pannier Camp, hand out bikes & kit and head off on an initial trial ride: Long Mynd "England's Little Switzerland" before heading back for dinner & social...
    Included: Accommodation
  • Day 2

    Shropshire Hills > Elan ValleyApprox. 80km
    Rolling hills and forest tracks along the English/Welsh border, before dropping into the wild moorland valleys south of Rhayader. Easing into the Tour nicely...
    Included: Breakfast, Riding Fuel, Accommodation
  • Day 3

    Elan Valley > Irfon ValleyApprox. 75km
    You won't see many people today - skirting around remote reservoirs, through epic forests and following the contours of river valleys - with a coffee break at a bothy. A challenging day, rewarded by the remoteness of Elenydd "the desert of Wales" and a night's recoup in the small town of Llanwyrtd Wells - the home of Bike Bog Snorkelling...
    Included: Breakfast, Riding Fuel, Dinner, Accommodation
  • Day 4

    Irfon Valley > Llanwrtyd Wells Approx. 35km - 70km
    Starting out from the bunkhouse, there are two options - either riding straight through the Irfon Valley to Llanwrtyd Wells for brunch, and the train back to the Shropshire Hills - or adding a morning loop around Llyn Brianne...
    Included: Breakfast
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  • Curated mixed-terrain routes in the UK's best riding locations; real escapes
  • Awesome Hire Bikes and Kit.Turn up with just a bag and enjoy an adventure cycling experience on one of our Surly adventure bikes, loaded with the best camping and other kit included. Or bring your own (subject to checks). Peace of mind.
  • Pannier Guides are experienced riders, qualified tour leaders and outdoor first aiders. We have toured extensively, some have ridden around the world...
  • Social. Riding with other adventure cyclists, in small groups
  • Authenticity. Our tours reflect the experience of a challenging adventure cycling trip, just with some home comforts in the evenings. A steady pace, riding in all weathers, carrying some of your own gear, communal camping and eating. Background support, when essential. Sometimes it's not as glamorous as it looks on Instagram, but you know that.
  • Pre-tour discount in the Pannier Shop, and access to post-trip deals
  • Meet
    Central Birmingham / Shropshire Hills
  • Accommodation
    Pannier Camps / Bunkhouse
  • Finish
    Shropshire Hills
  • Tour Duration
    4 days / 3 nights
  • Group Size
    6-10
  • Total Distance
    Approx. 240km
  • Bike & Kit Hire
    Bikes and all kit available; recommended
  • Terrain
    67% Paved, 33% Un-Paved
  • FOOD & DRINK
    Breakfasts, Riding Fuel, Campfire Treats, Evening Meal on final night all included
  • Difficulty
    Moderate > Tough
Selected date: None selected
Total Trip Cost: £2500
Deposit Payable Now: £0

Thanks for showing interest in our Tour. We'll be in touch as soon as we have the booking system ready to go. In the meantime, please confirm the following:



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