Tanya Marchant

Big E-Bike Demo Weekend – 2nd & 3rd March

Our First E-MTB Demo Event

One of the advantages of being a newsletter subscriber is that you’ll hear about (and get to book on) upcoming events first (if you’re not a subscriber you can sign up here!)  And here’s the next one – our first big E-Bike Demo event – a partnership between Pedalabikeaway and Pedal Syndicate.

If you haven’t tried an e-bike yet (where have you been hiding?) or want to know which one to choose next, this is the event for you.

There is such a wide range of bikes, motors, weights… lightweight, midweight, full fat…it’s difficult to know which is best!

Which bikes can you demo?

Whyte Bikes will be showcasing their new E-Lyte 150. It’s one of the first opportunities to demo it in the UK and you can directly compare it with the Transition RelayPivot Shuttle SL and hopefully the Specialized Levo and Kenevo SL (TBC) – the only other lightweight e-bikes worth riding in our opinion.

Yeti will have their amazing 160 E and you’ll be able to compare it with the Pivot Shuttle LT and AM, Whyte E-160 S, and the Transition Repeater.

That’s a lot of riding!

How to Book:

Book your place here

It’s £20 per person per day and you can demo as many bikes as you like for up to one hour each. 

ps. Just don’t forget to bring your drivers licence or passport as proof of ID. 

See you there!

Gareth and Ian


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Christmas Opening Hours

Here’s our opening times during Christmas and New Year :

Christmas Eve: 9am to 3pm

Christmas Day: CLOSED

Boxing Day: 11am to 3pm

27th-30th: 9am to 5pm

New Years Eve: 9am to 4pm

New Years Day: 11am to 5pm

Be Nice, Say Hi!

First off, we love e-bikes! I was an early adopter of the EMTB as it allowed me to commute off road from the Wye Valley to Pedalabikeaway and back again most days!

We are also seeing an increasing trend of e-bike sales. Over the last 12 months at our sister shop Pedal Syndicate over 70% of new bike sales have been EMTB’s

It’s introducing a lot of people to the world of mountain biking for the first time, and allowing others to come back to the sport, but also creating some conflict out on the trails!

E-bikes, by their very nature, allow you to ride uphill faster, ride in a tight group, and allow you to reach places you may not otherwise have been able to access.

All of these create challenges. We all ride mountain bikes for very similar reasons, and this is definitely not an us and them scenario…

But when we are on e-bikes there are a few things to be mindful of;

  • You’ll be approaching riders, especially uphill at much greater speed. Think ahead and slow down and be respectful of all other users – particulary younger riders, horses and walkers.
  • If you are riding in groups again be mindful of the other user groups. Big groups of riders can be quite intimidating to other users, especially when moving at speed.
  • Downhill the bikes carry huge amounts of momentum, so you may need to anticipate further ahead that you are used too, and give yourself a greater stopping distance.
  • The bikes may take you further away and potentially into more remote areas – do you have the appropriate kit with you?

E-bikes are growing, and will soon make up 50% of the mountain bikes out there, and they really do offer some massive benefits for both time, health and fitness.

If you haven’t tried one yet, we definitely recommend trying them – in particular the new breed of lightweight e-bikes. Are they the best of both worlds?

Ride Sheffield recently came up with a great and simple catch line ‘Be Nice, say Hi’ –  just slow down  and say hello.  A smile and a simple hello breaks down no end of barriers, after all, we are all mountain bikers…

Now get out there and ride.

Top Winter Riding Tips

So it’s finally here……the long nights, wet weather and sloppy trails! Winter riding can be some of the best fun you have on the bike too.

Here are some of our top tips to enjoy riding this winter!

  1. Ride with a group/friends

If the weather is crap, it’s oh so easy to sack off going riding. Once you’ve committed riding with a friend or a group it’s definitely much harder to drop out!

So message one of your friends or join a group ride and commit to getting out whatever the weather!

2. Ride at Night

Yes it gets dark early, but night riding is soo much fun! Proper night lights are a bit of an expense, and we would recommend having both a helmet light and a bar mounted light, but once you have a set, they will last for many years of fun. I still have my exposure Max D Mk2. Exposure are now on mark 12 or 13, so that bar light has given me over 10 years of riding fun. If you are worried about getting lost, or don’t fancy riding on your own, Wye MTB do a monthly shop ride from Pedalabikeaway, so you can ride with like minded people. Learn more

3. Fit a Grippy front tyre

Get a specialist front tyre for that winter slop! It will be a bit draggy, but it will transform your winter riding.

You are looking for something with wider spaced nobbles to clear the mud, and a soft compound to smear itself across the trail : )

Some of our favourites are the Maxxis Shorty, Specialized Hillbilly or the Contintental Arogotal. If you are more of a trail or XC rider, the new Maxxis Forecaster is a great shout.

4. Get a Front Mudguard

They don’t look cool, but front mudguards are a must when it comes to winter riding. They keep the majority of mud out your eyes and face, and allow you to focus on finding grip!

Bigger is definitely better here though, so check out the RRP or Mudhugger mud guards if you want comprehensive coverage.

5. Wear riding trousers (and waterproof socks)

Riding trousers are great for winter riding! Not only can you just strip off your trousers when you’re finished and not be covered in mud, but when combined with a waterproof sock, they stop your feet getting wet too! The water can’t spray over the top of the sock (the one downside with waterproof socks and shorts) leaving your feet nice and dry and keeping a smile on your face!

6. Layer up

Multiple layers are much better. Not only do they transfer the sweat away from your body better, but they also help you regulate your own temperature too by peeling off or adding layers as required.

In winter we roll with a Merino wool base layer (this is a magic material) long sleeve top and then outlayer. Our favourite outer layers are the Patagonia Houdini for Autumn or the new Troy Lee Designs primaloft Mathis for those really chilly days, or the Dirt Roamer Storm for those wet days.

Now get out there and enjoy those winter rides!

Fod Fest 2023 – 22nd & 23rd September

Preparations are in full swing for our annual MTB Festival at Pedalabikeaway. This year there will be even more supplier stalls with great bikes, accessories and merch, top bikes (from Norco, Nukeproof, Whyte Bikes, Transition Bikes, Orange Bikes & Pivot Bikes) to demo, timed runs, competitions, spot prizes, our own Festival Ale, live entertainment on Friday night and camping available at nearby Worcester Lodge. Obviously there will be great food from the Pedalabikeaway team to refuel everyone and it goes without saying, a great vibe too! FOD Fest is free to attend and everyone is welcome regardless of riding experience. If you would like to participate in timed runs or demo a bike or two, there is a cost and you need to book your places here. Places are limited so don’t leave it until the last minute to secure yours. https://pedalabikeaway.co.uk/event-directory/

Pedalabikeaway Wins Forestry England Contract!

We’re delighted to announce that we have been successful in the Forestry England tender to operate café & shop for another 10 years. We’ve worked hard to make our café feel like a friendly FOD Clubhouse for hungry and thirsty visitors over the last 12 years, and we’ll continue to work hard to provide great value food, drink, riding related accessories and events for our customers & community. 

The café has been rebranded to fit Forestry England styling but rest assured it is the experienced Pedalabikeaway team who continue to serve your food and drink.  We continue to source local ingredients where possible and always provide gluten free and vegan options on our daily and specials menus.

We plan to extend our pop up facilities this winter to give us more flexibility in opening times and reduce wait times in busy periods. 

Pedalabikeaway Takes Full Ownership of Ace Bicycles Monmouth

Pedalabikeaway is rebranding Ace Bicycles Monmouth to “Pedal Syndicate” to reflect a move to 100% ownership following a departure from the business of Toby (Ace Bicycles Guildford).

Ace Bicycles Monmouth launched 3 years ago as a collaboration between Gareth Sheppard and Ian Officer from Pedalabikeaway, and Toby, from Ace Bicycles Guildford. The two businesses have always worked closely together as a bike shop was a natural next step for Pedalabikeaway and it’s team of passionate mountain bike enthusiasts, but the right retail space was not forthcoming at it’s Forest of Dean Cycle Centre base.

To celebrate the change, all Ace customers have been invited to a Summer Ride Out event complete with food and goody bags. 

“Pedalabikeway already operates a small shop at the Cycle Centre stocking mostly riding accessories but the only bikes we sell are our ex-hire bikes at the end of each season. Being able to sell new bikes to our customers seems like a very natural step. Although Pedal Syndicate is located in nearby Monmouth, customers will be able to demo bikes in the Forest of Dean but all the personalised set up and maintenance will happen at the Monmouth store.” Ian Officer, Director, Pedalabikeaway.

“The new Pedal Syndicate will maintain it’s own identity and will continue to offer fantastic bike brands, services and outstanding customer support to everyone looking for premium mountain bikes and workshop services. Our fantastic team will continue to be led by Amy and Martin and supported by Alex and Henri” 

“It was great to get Andy from Cinderford Agency, Squiff of Squiff Creative Media involved in the design of our new logo. It does everything we asked – brings synergy with the existing Pedalabikeaway brand and we particularly like the internal arrow pointing to all the rad riding in the Forest!” Gareth Sheppard, Director

Pedalabikeaway has recently won it’s Forestry England contract to continue to operate the cafe and shop at the Forest of Dean Cycle Centre as well as it’s own Bike Hire operation that it’s been running for the past 12 years.

For more information about Pedalabikeaway or Pedal Syndicate contact Gareth Sheppard, Director, Pedalabikeaway. gareth@pedalabikeaway.co.uk.

Planned Closure

Planned Closure at Pedalabikeaway 12th-23rd June (with outdoor cafe, shop & bike hire 17th/18th June)

While our Landlord, Forestry England, carries out essential electrical works Pedalabikeaway Cafe, Shop and Bike Hire will be closed from 12th – 23rd June (although Bike Hire will return on 17th-18th & 23rd June and outside Cafe & Shop will be open on Saturday 17th & Sunday 18th June). Over the weekend we’ll be serving a hog roast on 17th and homemade pizzas on 18th alongside our coffees and cold drinks.  We’ll reopen on 24th June with normal services returning.

Please note that toilet facilities will be available throughout the closure.

Thanks for bearing with us. 

 

May News & Event Updates

At last, there’s holiday sunshine in the forecast, upgraded trails, a new hire fleet and the FOD Thursday (Race your Mates) dates are available to book! We are also closing briefly between 12th-23rd June for a rewiring project. Read on for more detail.

Don’t forget to hire your holiday bikes!

With the final May Bank Holiday and half term just days away, our hire bikes are booking up fast. We have a wide selection of leisure and mountain bikes for all the family plus e-bikes and accessories such as tagalongs, child seats and trails. We typically do sell out this time of year so if you are thinking about a ride in the Forest of Dean – please book to avoid disappointment.

PBA Closure (Essential Electrical Work)

The Cafe and Shop will be closed on Wednesday 24th May and then again from 12-23rd June with a limited outside cafe service on 17th & 18th June. Please note Bike Hire will be open from 16th-18th June.

Diary Dates:

FOD Thursdays – Race Your Mates

29th June, 6th & 20th July – Now includes an earlier session for U16s. As usual food and drink included in your ticket. Book your slot(s)

Late Night Thursdays:

Our popular Late Night Thursdays continue every Thursday with a cafe special each week – last food orders at 8.15pm. Showers & toilets also open until 9pm.

Trail Update:

  1. The Skills Area (over the bridge) has had a make over and is ready for action again! It’s a great place to warm up or for kids to get an introduction to mountain biking before trying the singletrack and downhill trails behind the bike hire yard.
  2. The Start Mound is Ready! The reshaping of the downhill start mound is now complete. Each downhill line now has a separate start and the GBU trail now has a new qualifier drop too. Have you tried them out yet?

If you would like to help out with trail digging get in touch with Dean Trail Volunteers who are always looking for more hands! 

Ex-Hire Bikes Update:

There’s now just a few of our ex-hire bikes left! As well as a selection of Specialized Sirrus and Whyte mountain bikes in small and medium sizes (great for kids and smaller builds!), we also have a large full suspension Orange Switch, plus a large Whyte e160. 

All bikes have been regularly serviced and come with 3 months warranty. They can be collected from the Cycle Centre or delivered free within 10 miles or couriered anywhere in UK for £20. 

Going, going…


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