Danby – Commondale – Danby – Glaisdale Rigg

This was an amlagamation of 2 routes found on Muddy Bums (links later). It wasn’t meant to be an amlagamation of two routes but half way round the first (blue) route I realised that I had loaded the wrong route onto my GPS software on my phone, so we turned back and joined on to the route we intended to do. Just a small 6 mile detour…

The actual red route was pretty tough. Starting with some very difficult technical off road riding and downhill, followed by a tough long on road up hill section and ending with a relentless slog across Glaisdale Rigg. Definitely a hard one, but great scenery and some good technical riding along the way.

Most of the fast downhill sections are on road, and the first downhill section is very tricky single track and rocky.

All in all a good ride if you like a challenge. Not so great if you’re looking for thrills and spills!

More info on these routes from Muddy Bums:
Here: http://routes.muddybums.org.uk/route/danby_commondale_with_panniermans_causeway\
And Here: http://routes.muddybums.org.uk/route/danby_glaisdale_rigg\

One man, two wheels, three peaks! Donate now (if you want)

The Yorkshire Three Peaks is one of Britains most famous WALKING challenges. Starting in the heart of yorkshire at Horton in Ribblesdale and taking in three of Yorkshires highest hills –  Pen y Ghent (694m),  Inglebrough (723m) and Whernside (736m), the challenge on foot is to complete the 25 mile loop in under 12 hours. You know what, if you want to know more – google it – there’s loads of information out there, there’s no need for me to write it all again.

Having done the walk with a couple of friends last year, talk came around to doing it again this year. Not keen on that idea (what’s the point in repeating a challenge?) I thought I’d try something different. And so, on Saturday when @pkryder and @andybell79 are trudging round a’pieds I will be attempting this challenge…on a bike.

My route is a little different to the walking route in order to miss out some of the more tricky bits, but will no doubt involve some lovely pushing, carrying and general awkwardness when trying to take a bike where it’s not supposed to go (only Inglebrough has a recognised mountain bike route up and down). The route I am aiming for is below.

Whilst I and we are and am not specifically doing this for charity, rather because I am a bit of a mentalist,  I do support the Make A Wish foundation so if you do fancy making a donation, please head over to http://justgiving.com/philmarsay and give anything you can spare. I’m still slowly edging towards a £500 target. If and when I hit this, I will voluntarily throw myself out of a plane (preferably with a parachute attached). I’ll pay for this out of my own pocket so your money will not be going towards me doing something else generally a bit stupid!

Whether you donate or not, wishes of good luck will be most appreciated / needed!! Please pass this link around if you feel it is worthy of someone elses attention 🙂

Altura Trail, Whinlatter Forest

You’ve not done a red trail at a forest until you’ve done the Altura trail at Whinlatter! There’s no fannying around on wide forest access roads or meandering gently through the trees here. It’s high intensity rocky, steep, single track  and generally quite mad from start to finish. It’s also totally brilliant!

With some of the trail single track on the edge of a hill with a sheer drop threatening your very existence, including the fast downhill section from the top of the  it’s not a route for anyone with a problem with heights or anyone not so confident on their wheels!

There’s also plenty of both technical and lung busting climbing so a decent level of fitness is reccommended.

The only disappointing thing is that it’s over too soon 🙂



Darlington – Croft- Teesdale Way Route

Quite a good little training route this for getting back into the swing of things after some time off the bike. Not too long but has a little bit of everything with some country roads, bridleway and a short, testing off road section on the Teesdale way.

Though it didn’t seem that challenging it did manage to break the axel on my back wheel – so be warned it may get bumpy!!

Hamsterley Forest Red(ish) Route!

Hamsterleys new Red route is a lot of fun!

The route plotted here is a slight variation on the full red trail. Where the red trail forks off forest drive onto the road, this trail does not and instead carries on along the blue route until it re-joins the red on Forest Drive again.

Also, on the descent, I ignored a red sign pointing down a forest road and dove into the forest for more tree hugging downhill fun, but comparing this with the official trail, I can’t quite see where I went off trail!

Hamsterley Forest Blue and a Bit!

This route at Hamsterley follows the Blue trail until it rejoins the red. It then continues a short way along the red trail before cutting back along a mostly gravel forest road down hill and back to the visitor centre, taking in the short forest section at the start and again at the end.


Gunnerside / Rogan’s Seat MTB Ride/Route

This was a mega bike ride on what might be the last chance I get to get out properly this year as winter and bad weather approaches and thoughts turn to snowier exploits!

On the whole it was a good route. The scenery on the loop from Gunnerside is spectacular and the summit of Rogans seat though rather remote and not overly scenic was an easily accessible bonus, and it is good to say I’ve been to the highest point of the yorkshire dales on my bike!

The small section of bridleway from Arkle Town to Moulds Bottom was pretty boggy, overgrown and unridable and so should be avoided. Also crossing the valley at Gunnerside (around mile 9) was particularly precarious with a single track path cut into the steep side of the valley with a rather nasty drop making it only ridable to the most expert rider and only with some serious balls or screws loose!

The rest of the route was either gravel or rough track or road.

It’s a long tough slog up to the top of Rogan’s seat, but from that point on, the descent was fun and fast.