‘Evo Triangle’, North Wales, UK
This Great Road was initially published in issue 78 of Total 911.
A first this edition as our Great Road is not one road, but two. Both form part of a popular route deep in north Wales, often named the ‘Evo Triangle’ after the popular car magazine that first brought the roads to the public’s attention.
Although called a triangle, only two of the sides are of serious merit when it comes to driving. It starts for most people on the A5; the main route into the area from the east and is also the main area of attention for speed cameras. For accommodation, sustenance or fuel, this road offers the last chance on the route.
Turning right onto the A543 at Pentrefoelas, we leave behind the villages and our route becomes worthy of pressing on. Narrow stone walls thin out, the road gains altitude and, after a mile or two, we appear on more open moorland.
Heading north-east, the straight lines of the A5 become a memory as the car rises and falls through fabulous bends. Cambers and curves alternate, allowing excellent opportunity for slow in, fast out in classic 911 style. No matter what model of 911 you have, this initial section is always a joy to experience.
After an all too quick eight miles from Pentrefoelas, we turn right onto the B4501 to head south. Moorland is replaced by forest, and the technical nature in the last ten minutes changes to a steady cruise at speed.
Braking takes a back seat, and the excellent surface is nothing short of a joy. There’s a mix of everything on this one part of the route; long straights with good visibility, sweeping bends, short bends, bends uphill and down.
LATITUDE: 53.0494/-3.6778 LENGTH OF DRIVE: 20 miles POINTS OF INTEREST: FOOD AND ACCOMMODATION: The Groes Inn, Conwy
Betws Y Coed – shopping/fuel/food
Snowdonia National Park
Riverside Chocolate House, Pentrefoelas
LENGTH OF DRIVE: 20 miles
POINTS OF INTEREST:
FOOD AND ACCOMMODATION:
The Groes Inn, Conwy
When we first drove this section back in 2004, the forests were right by the roadside. In recent years they’ve been cleared and the terrain now takes on a totally different appearance. Driving there once meant a narrow, tree-lined blur, which is now the opposite; a more open, slowly drifting rotation in the horizon as the miles roll by.
A few miles in and a reservoir, Llyn Brenig, is visible on the left-hand side. There’s a nice pull in near the lakeside, which makes a perfect spot for a mid-route picnic or break from driving. Getting back on track the character of the route changes only slightly, where altitude variation takes more of a role in proceedings.
Be warned, as there’s a lovely right-left sweep with a steep crest mid-bend that can catch out the unwary or overconfident. There’s a 911-sized hole in the hedge to prove it, made by Total 911’s original publisher, no less! That double bend brings on a gradual drop into Cerrigydrudion, meaning we close the last side of the triangle, meeting the A5 we passed on the way in.
The Triangle is, indeed, a good route, but by no means the only one in the area. Although a modern mecca for petrolheads of all brands, other local roads are just as worthy of attention.
In times when driving any car can be a chore, the open, quiet roads of the Triangle provide a welcome chance to experience conditions we dream of as drivers of high-performance sports cars.
Make the plan to go, drive it and judge for yourself. However, don’t make do with those three roads as being the jewel in the Welsh crown. Head out and find a few of your own great roads nearby.