Biking is big in GB this year. We are happy to encourage all abilities and ages to get on their bikes in Ryedale and enjoy the exercise, countryside and then wind down afterwards in Noelles Cottages. A list of a dozen (well nearly) things to help you on your way…
1 Advice from a man who knows…..Mike Hawtin breathes biking and has a wealth of knowledge of the bike routes in Ryedale. You can ring him or drop him an email for all sorts of advice and suggestions. 01751 47511 07802 883018 mike@gonemountainbiking. Tell him about your link with Noelle’s Cottages. He will help you with guided rides or training if you book in advance.
2 Get you back on the road spares – give Mike a call, he has plenty of standard spares to keep you going and can give bike advice.
3 Bike shops. Pickering has a helpful middle of the road bike repair and parts shop in the Market Place – Pickering Cycle Centre 01751 472 581. There is a smart mountain bike shop Big Bear Bikes near the traffic lights 01751 474 220 and in Dalby Village a bike hire and shop to be run by Pace cycles and CTC (the Cycling Touring Club) details awaited.
4 Guide books and maps. The three key OS maps are West and East North York Moors and the Howardian Hills. Paul Pickering has written a good selection routes of various levels of challenge. These should be available in the cottages. If you want to prepare yourself before you arrive the outdoor shopTrailblazers in Pickering is very helpful and also has an online site.
5 Dalby Forest – this must be on your list of possible destinations. The green and blue routes are good family cycling. Maps are available from Dalby Village or will be found in the cottages. Have a look at the forestry link which gives a good overview. If you ride in its free but cars are charged at £7 each. You can find a wide range of routes and not all have to follow the World Cup route.
6 North York Moors are threaded with bike routes of varying difficulty but my man who knows – Mike – tells me it is easy to underestimate the challenge than many routes can provide. He will be happy to advise. Rosedale is a great place to start from and many enthusiasts set off up Chimney Bank, one of the steepest roads in the UK 1:3 in places. Coming down is more exciting. You can park at the top where the Chimney used to be and ride the largely horizontal railway track used by the ironstone workings in the 19th century. The Lion Inn at Blakey is a good place to head for but it will be hard to extract yourself from the open fires, excellent fuel food and good beer. There are other good rides in Rosedale, you can climb more gently up to the railway if you ride anti-clockwise setting off north from the village towards Dale Head and then have a sharp climb to the railway after sampling Maggies special tea and traditional Yorkshire goodies at Farmhouse Fodder…. I’d push. Not a technical challenge but takes you into lovely countryside.
7 Blansby Park to Newton takes you into lovely countryside, you follow the North York Moors Railway out of Pickering, turn right after the level crossing and follow the valley briefly – the old Royal Deer Park. You then pull up the valley side to the left and take a sometimes gloopy green lane to Newton. From there you can check the local pub and peer down into Levisham Halt where the steam train runs. Noelle and I like to walk down to the station and back up to Levisham village as a leg stretcher but I doubt it makes for good riding.
8 Hole of Horcum to Levisham. I have described this as a walk on the blog. You can park a car in the National Park carpark on the road to Whitby just before it plunges over the rim of the Hole and drops down to the historic Saltersgate pub and Fylingdales listening station – not marked on your map. You can cycle across the moors and pass Dundale pond with reeds and dragon flies and head into the village for lunch at the Horseshoe pub.
9 Test your dirt jumping skills in the newly opened Newbridge Park. Best accessed along the footpath that runs below the castle in Pickering. Please push and respect those on foot. You can get a day pass from Trailblazers in the Market Place in Pickering. In time we will thread a cycle trail through the woods to give various circuits and provide cycle access to Dalby….in time.
10 Outdoor stuff, maps and advice, call into Trailblazers in the Market Place in Pickering and see if there are any toys you are short of. They tend to aim for affordable quality rather than items that will let you down.
11 Short of contours? If its hairy stuff you want then contact Mike and see if he can fit you up with the sort of ride you are looking for. He does guided rides and training and can help you with technical riding and bike issues. He does B and B and if you want you can immerse yourself in cogs, drops and even indulge in f stops and depth of field.
12 – would you like to suggest what to include so others might enjoy?