When is the bike shop open?
The bike shop is open all year around. 9am-5pm every day except for Wednesdays when it is closed all day.
What do the trail grades mean?
All the trails at Cannock Chase use the green, blue, red, and black grading system. Each trail is signposted with coloured arrows and the Forestry Commission’s grading panels. These are as follows:
Green: Easy. Suitable for: Beginner/novice cyclists. Basic bike skills required. Most bikes and hybrids. The green route can take trailers.
Blue: Moderate. Suitable for: Intermediate cyclists/mountain bikers with basic off road riding skills. Mountain bikes or hybrids.
Red: Difficult. Suitable for: Proficient mountain bikers with good off road riding skills. Suitable for better quality off-road mountain bikes.
Black: Severe. Suitable for: Expert mountain bike users, used to physically demanding routes. Quality off-road mountain bikes.
If you’re unsure which trail to choose, pop into Cannock Chase Cycle Centre and speak to the staff there – they’ll be able to recommend the right trail for you.
How much does parking cost and when does the car park close?
Parking costs and opening times are available on the Forestry Commission website. Part of the car park income at Birches Valley goes toward the mountain bike trails! Apart from the parking cost, the trails are free to ride and open all year round.
Why has my security deposit not been refunded?
The security deposit we take on the day is voided as soon as the bike is returned.
This transaction will usually not even show in your account.
On some rare occasions it can take your bank up to 5 working days to realise we have voided this transaction.
So please allow 5 working days for this to happen.
Where can I get a map?
Cannock Chase Cycle Centre stocks two maps – one showing the XC mountain bike trails and another showing the green/blue walking and cycling routes. There are also information boards at the start of the trails, and all routes are signposted.
You can also download maps from the Forestry Commission website.
What facilities do you have on site?
- Birches Valley Cafe serves sandwiches, paninis, toasties, soups, cakes, and ice cream, plus hot and cold drinks. Open 7 days a week.
- There is an onsite token operated bike wash available. Tokens can be purchased from Cannock Chase Cycle Centre for £1 per token.
- Birches Valley does have toilets, but unfortunately there are no changing rooms or showers.
What should I do in an emergency?
All the marker posts (usually at the start of each section and near technical features) have emergency information on them, including the grid reference, nearest hospital, and emergency contact numbers. In case of an emergency you should contact the ambulance service and, if possible, Cannock Chase Cycle Centre and/or the Forestry Commission. Both numbers are listed on the emergency info posts.
For the downhill trails at Stile Cop, there are marker posts located at the top and bottom of the hill – these show the same emergency information including the post codes, grid references, etc.