Analysing terrain data
The exposure grade describes the potential consequences of falling or slipping off the path.
Low Exposure: The path is on completely flat land and potential injury is limited to falling over.
Medium Exposure: The trail contains some obstacles such as outcroppings and rock which could cause injury.
High Exposure: Some trail sections have exposed ledges or steep ascents/descents where falling could cause serious injury.
Extreme Exposure: Some trail sections are extremely exposed where falling will almost certainly result in serious injury or death.
After exiting the car park go up to the swing bridge, then turn left onto the canal.
You will shortly reach the White Hart pub where you exit the canal, turn right and up and over a hump back bridge over the canal following a dirt track.
You will then reach the start of the Brinmore Tramroad where there are various displays describing its history and usage which are well worth stopping to read.
The track at the start is flat but can be bumpy, and is walled by hedges either side.
After passing through a few gates (make sure you close them) enter the forest where you will start to gradually climb and the surface can be looser in places.
See if you can spot evidence of where the tram tracks used to be.
After exiting the forest you will come to a junction which is signposted Tramroad straight on to your left or Taff trail to your right.
At this point there are numerous routes and distances that can be chosen (see other Talybont on Usk tramroad routes). Take the Tramroad sign to your left and continue climbing on a sometimes rough & loose track through the forest, upon exiting the forest cross straight over a forest road and continue into the forest again, climbing where the track gets narrower.
Pass through a gate with the reservoir still on your right and just as you exit the forest there is a short, steep and very rocky ascent to negotiate; select a low gear, get your speed up and keep pedaling, choosing your line wisely. When you reach the top turn right onto the gravel track and follow this through a number of muddy wet areas until you start climbing on some rough rocky sections.
At this point you can see the track snaking uphill along the side of the mountain.
Climb some more & then stop and turn around.
Awaiting you is a breathtaking view over the valley, the reservoir and to the rolling pastures below.
After catching your breath continue climbing,through a gate in a saddle between two mountains and see if you can climb the rocky steps in front of you.
At the top continue straight on some muddy sunken tracks (often used by 4x4 drivers) and follow this wet and muddy track as it undulates across the mountain ( with a quarry on your left).
Continue along track, often vague in places until you descend on a rough track to the dam wall at Pontsticill.
This is a great place for a break and to soak up the stunning scenery.
You can now either take the road alongside the reservoir or the Taff trail route through the forest.
Cross over the reservoir and then take the road climb up past Dolygaer centre on your right and onto a rough track which is a challenging climb in places.
Continue straight on uphill at any junctions and eventually you will reach the edge of the forest and a gate.
Go through the gate and re-join to the right the track you came along at the start then retrace your route until you come to the point on the gravel track earlier.
Do not go down here but continue on the flat with great views of the reservoir to your left.
Continue along this track until you reach the tarmac road, and then downhill on the road until you return to the start at Talybont.