If you like to experience adventures on two wheels as well as four, grab your gear and get to grips with these recommendations for the top 5 UK mountain bike trails for autumn.
Autumn’s unpredictability makes it an exciting season – one into which you can pack a multitude of very different experiences.
One minute, you can be taking a break during a weekend walk and relaxing in a warm breeze, watching sunlight filter through leaves that are rapidly changing from green to brown. Then, just a few minutes later, you could be sheltering from a sudden downpour under the very same tree.
Wherever you’re heading over the next few weeks to make the most of last, lingering fair weather, you can be sure that driving a Subaru will get you out there with the utmost safety, capability and reliability.
Enjoy an autumn adrenalin boost
If you’re keen on adventures on two wheels as well as four, what better way to enjoy the excitement of an autumn adrenalin boost than in the saddle of a mountain bike? Whether you love the rush of the crisp morning air or prefer to make the most of the last embers of lighter evenings, it’s a great way to immerse yourself in nature and soak up some of the best landscapes the UK has to offer.
With their sure-footed handling, strong, lightweight construction and excellent brakes to keep you out of danger, the best modern mountain bikes, much like Subaru’s range of SUVs, are ready for whatever nature can throw at them. So why not grab your gear (or plan to head to a handy hire centre), jump behind the wheel of an ever-eager Subaru and set off to tackle an off-road cycling route?
Choose the best bike rack for your specific needs
Speak to your local Subaru dealer and you’ll find you have a number of different options when it comes to carrying your bikes on your car.
Start by considering whether you’d prefer your bikes to be carried on the roof of your Subaru or on a rack attached to a towbar. Subaru roof bars and towbars are available as optional items for all models, excluding BRZ.
Choosing a roof-mounted option means that it’s always easy to access the boot of your car – and this is your only option if you also plan to tow a trailer or caravan, of course. However, bear in mind that the bikes will need to be lifted up to roof level. A handy tip for people who struggle to raise bikes onto the roof because of their age, height or health is to keep either a set of small folding steps or a sturdy toolbox in the boot, to give you a bit of extra reach as you stand at the side of the car. Subaru offers a choice of basic and premium roof carriers for bikes, both of which are fully lockable.
There are three options for towbar-mounted bike racks – to carry two bikes (up to a total of 36kg), three bikes (up to a total of 45kg) or two electric bikes (up to a total of 60kg). Each of these options comes with appropriate electrics to plug in to the 13-pin socket on your Subaru, so that the rear light functionality is extended to display on the towbar rack.
Top 5 UK mountain bike adventures for autumn
All kitted out and raring to go? Great! Here are five recommended mountain bike trails around the UK – offering something for everyone…
1. Surrey – Peaslake
The Peaslake area, south of Guildford, is huge fun for riders of all abilities – from the mountain bike novice with the spotless tyres to the grizzly expert with the war wounds to prove it. There are over 50 trails to choose from. Or better still, combine these options with riding in the Hurtwood area, meaning you can keep coming back and always feel like you’re getting something different from your ride.
Naturally, Subaru SUVs with always-on Symmetrical All-Wheel Drive love variety too. From sand to snow, and rocks to roads – there’s no terrain or weather conditions too challenging for a Subaru. But while the journey conditions might fluctuate wildly in autumn, your Subaru’s ability to deliver you to your destination safely is an unwavering constant.
2. Wales – Gower Peninsula
The first place in Britain to be designated an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, the Gower Peninsula in South Wales offers bikers everything from tree-lined green lanes to stunning widescreen vistas of blue sky and miles of ocean.
Still got some energy left after your exertions and explorations? Travel north and experience your Subaru’s unbeatable traction and control on the twisty roads of the Brecon Beacons National Park. Or simply stick your bike back on the roof carrier and reach for your surfboard instead – the Gower Peninsula’s miles of white sandy beaches and numerous coves make this area the home of Welsh surfing.
3. Norfolk – Thetford Forest
Proving that a lack of hills definitely doesn’t equate to a lack of thrills when it comes to two wheels, Thetford Forest in Norfolk is packed with miles of trails. The trees lining each route add to the sense of speed, but it’s the bomb holes (the result of military action during WWII) that will really keep you on your toes.
And if those bomb holes have piqued your interest in the war, skip the official forest café and journey back to Thetford itself to the Dad’s Army Museum and tea shop located in Thetford Guildhall, where several of the original TV episodes were filmed.
4. Peak District – Jacob’s ladder
Definitely not for beginners, this infamous Peak trail isn’t hugely long, but the punishing ascents and tough, boulder-strewn descents ensure both bike and body get a serious workout.
Once you’ve loaded your bikes back onto your Subaru, climb out of your muddy clothes and head over to explore the stunning interior and grounds of Chatsworth House, seat of the Duke of Devonshire.
5. Scotland – Kinlochleven
Once crowned Trail of the Year by the experts at Mountain Bike Rider, the Ciaran Path, close to Glencoe on Scotland’s western coast, is sure to test you with its demanding changes in terrain – from fast flowing tracks to more technical rocky sections. Bear in mind that, with boggy ground made wetter by autumn showers and several streams to cross, finishing the ride with dry feet isn’t a given.
But your Subaru doesn’t mind a bit of mud. So shake yourself off and set the navigation to head to the nearest tavern for some fire-side refreshments.
Drive – and ride – safely
As ever, we recommend you take all the necessary precautions to ride sensibly, safely and responsibly. While we can’t guarantee your safety on the two-wheel trails, we have moved mountains to protect you on the way home.
You can sit behind the wheel of any Subaru SUV, crossover or estate (Forester, XV, Outback or Levorg) with the peace of mind that it has the maximum 5* Euro NCAP rating and a suite of advanced safety technologies – all fitted as standard – to help keep you, your passengers and other road users optimally protected at all times.
Finally, we should probably also point out that a Subaru SUV is inevitably guaranteed to be more reliable than any autumn weather forecast, of course. But don’t let that hold you back – get out there anyway!
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