Gawton downhill: Official opening this weekend

South West gravity-fed action

Three new purpose-built downhill tracks will be officially opened at Gawton in Tavistock, Devon, tomorrow.


Corsair rider Chris Smith will be there, along with Cove rider Ash Mullane, and local trail group the Woodland Riders will be putting on a barbecue.

There will also be demo bikes available to ride from Felt, Kona, Turner, RockyMountain, Cove and Orange.

The Woodland Riders received a £50,000 lottery grant and set about building the new trails with the help of Rowan Sorrell. He’s the man behind the epic Cwmcarn and Rheola downhill runs, Brechfa freeride section and Glyncorrwg Energy section.

There are three runs on offer, all supported by an uplift service. HSD, the beginner/trail centre-type run, is a flowing track down the side of the hill which can be taken at pace for more fun or rolled down gently for downhill novices

Egypt is the intermediate run, which mixes rocks, roots and tight switchbacks on a steep descent to the bottom of the valley.

Super-Tavi launches you straight into a road gap followed by a rock drop which spits you into the trees at the other side. Steep, tight switchbacks are then the name of the game, with a few kickers and a rock garden thrown in to mix it up.


We visited Gawton before the official opening and were very impressed with the riding on offer. To see our video from the day, presented by Mountain Biking UK’s Ric McLaughlin, click here. Hopefully it’ll give you a flavour of the great riding on offer at Devon’s newest downhill venue.

Ash mullane on the road gap: ash mullane on the road gap
Matthew Cole/BikeRadar