Cycling Long Mountain, Wales
Ride 1.8 miles gaining 912’ at 9.6% average grade.
This modest climb, by Welsh bike climbing standards, is #10 on the Welsh Top Bike Climbs list. There is a monster 16.4% quarter-mile beginning at mile 0.9 that will test your legs, and the climb is generally up, up, and more up. 👍
The Long Mountain climb begins at the intersection with a :major” highway -- major by middle-Wales standards that is. In any case, there was a fair amount of traffic, and from the pullout at the bottom of the climb that I parked in, I waited a good number of minutes for the traffic to die down enough to cross the highway to the start point. I recommend parking along the highway if you are driving to the climb. Apart from some pullouts, there aren’t many good locations for parking along the route of the climb.
Start at the intersection of A458 and Welsh Harp Hollow Road at the eastern edge of Buttington.
Along the opening kilometers of the climb, there are several farms you’ll pass as the road stairsteps up the hillside. This is a typical one-lane Welsh country road with seven-foot tall hedges lining the side of the road for the bottom miles. Up toward the top of the climb, you snag views of the ancient lands surrounding - and this is part Wales. The village called Berriew was home to a Viking vs. Welsh battle in the year ~890. The summit is marked by an intersection with another narrow farm road. Continue straight about a half-mile at this intersection and you’ll officially enter English territory, although it is not noted by any signage.
Finish at what is marked on the map as “National Cycle Rte 81”
“Route 81 runs from Aberystwyth to Wolverhampton, with the section running through Wales called Lôn Cambria. Lôn Cambria travels 113 miles from the coast at Aberystwyth to the historic border town of Shrewsbury, crossing the heart of beautiful Mid Wales through the Cambrian mountains and alongside the beautiful Elan Valley reservoirs to Rhayader” (Route 81 - Sustrans UK).