By Kevin Alton
Cycling in Cornwall is a great way to explore the outdoors, especially if you like riding ‘off road’. Away from main roads and the worry of traffic, you can explore nature and get away from the bustle of society. Cornwall is a perfect destination. Riding in Cornwall’s Tamar Valley is a particularly fascinating journey into history, and trails are available for cyclists of all abilities.
Cornwall’s bike trails give you the chance to ride through some of the most incredible scenery. With a bike, you’ll cover much more territory than you could ever manage as a hiker. You’ll also enjoy a peace and quiet that is impossible with motorised transportation, and with no glass windows between you and the scenery. This makes cycle touring a fantastic way to enjoy all that Cornwall has to offer.
Cornwall’s Tamar Valley is particularly a mountain biking mecca, full of trails you can explore and enjoy. To ride the tracks and trails of Cornwall, you’ll require either a mountain bike or certainly a 26″ wheeled tourer . Compared with road bikes, these are bikes with enhanced durability and better performance — a must-have for the somewhat rough terrain you can encounter on your ride. Around 25km of trails were recently created in the area, so you can discover parts of the valley previously inaccessible to cyclists
Cornwall’s cycling routes represent an enjoyable, healthy way to explore the countryside for both experienced cyclists and afternoon riders alike. Cyclists can ride through Cornwall and its villages, exploring all they have to offer… including the fascinating remnants that mark Cornwall’s fascinating past.
The Cornish Tamar Valley is itself a mixed woodland, but its remarkable industrial and mining history makes it a particular attraction. Throughout the heydays of the Industrial Revolution, arsenic, copper, plus countless other minerals were mined in the Tamar Valley. Fortunes were made at breakneck speed, and new technologies, some unlike any the world ever knew, became common.
Exploring the Tamar Valley is a journey into the past. You’ll find yourself stumbling across structures that date back more than two hundred years, just waiting to be found. Bike the trails, and you’ll pass massive granite engine houses as well as vintage mineral tramways, once used to transport copper ore from one place to the other.
As you pass spectacular views, the trails of the Tamar Valley will also take you past the remains of former mine buildings and mine shafts… as well as woods whose original ownership dates back to a time before modern record keeping. Information boards at different points inform you about the area’s history and its workings.
The Tamar Valley is, of course, not just a historical experience. It has plenty of views to enjoy, as well. If you like, you can even take a detour ‘on-road,’ touring between the many quaint Cornish towns and other places of interest. Many roads in Cornwall are equipped with dedicated cycle lanes, while numerous local cycling shops and councils publish information about the routes located in their area.
Enjoy Cornwall by bike!