A 5 day motorbike tour of South Wales (4/5)
"A kamikaze sheep and a cow jam"
Day 4: Brecon - Bristol
Distance: 56 miles (90km) OR extended route of 129 miles (208km)
Highlights: The Glasfyndd Forest, Brecon Beacons, The Wye Valley, Tintern Abbey, The Severn Bridge
Accommodation: Premier Inn, Alveston (£47, double room, breakfast)
SatNav route: (Settings > Motorways) Talyllyn · [[Glasfynydd Forest · Lower Brynamman · Cnewr]] · Abergavenny · Tal-y-coed · Monmouth · Tintern · St Arvans · Severn Bridge · Bristol
Download: Extended Route - full directions and route here (free)
Download: Full directions and route here (free)
Map 1: Standard route overview (Brecon-Bristol)
Map 2: Extended route with a loop through the forest, Black Mountain and the A4069 to Brynamman
I awoke to the sound of sheepies in the paddocks and my body full of aches and pains from shoving Saki around the car park yesterday when she was in a mood and wouldn't wake up.
I had high hopes that Saki might actually be okay today because one of the friendly locals in Talywllyn where I was staying looked over her the night before.
The Grumpy One did indeed start first time and we headed off for a day of twisty roads in the Brecon Beacons, including the famous Black Mountain A4069 from Llandovery to Brynamman.
As I had no plans until the evening in Bristol, I pootled around the A and B-roads for a few hours. The villages that you pass through on your way are very pretty and some are quite historic.
I temporarily lost my confidence after nearly being taken out by a stupid skittish sheep who ran at me from the side of a mountain road. I missed him by a wooly hair's breadth.
A cup of tea at The New Tredegar Arms in Heolgwys restored me and I continued on my exploration, albeit at a slower pace... until I arrived at a cow jam.
A bull was in high spirits, trying to make baby coos with his harem with no sense of propriety.
Be extremely careful about your bike in this situation as it can seem like a challenge to a bull.
I've been advised in advanced rider training that you should stay way back, keep the engine on, drive widely and slowly past but be ready to skeddadle
Old advice was to turn off the engine but 1. that leaves you vulnerable if Mr Bull decides to charge at you and 2. when you switch bike on again the 'roar' seems like a challenge.
The final Welsh stretch on the B4233 from Abergavenny to Monmouth is splendid. Make sure you leave Monmouth on the A466(S) towards Chepstow if you want to visit Tintern Abbey otherwise you can take the B4293 through Trelleck if you prefer.
The Severn Bridge was built in 1966 and makes for a pretty exciting few minutes ride over where you can mull over the longstanding debate of whether it's English or Welsh!
The Premier Inn in Alveston is a nice place to stay, within easy reach of Bristol.
Read about Day 5: A motorbike tour of South Wales (5/5)
For the full 5 day route and overview, head over to 'A 5 Day Tour of South Wales: Itinerary'.