Here are some of the routes I ride, I have placed them up of GPSies web site you can search for my rides simply by searching my name (xendistar). The routes I list on here will have a bit more of an explanation.
- Lyndhurst Loop, strictly a summer ride, when I rode it there were several dried up mud beds to cross so I would hate to think what it would be like in the winter months. The ride starts from the centre of Lyndhurst, so if you have the family with you and they don’t want to ride they can wander around Lyndhurst while you go off exploring. Apart from the mud it is is mainly flat, mainly fire roads but there are a couple of road sections as well.
- Wilverley Plain (New Forest) A simple short loop of a ride in the middle of nowhere……..OK the New Forest. Start from the car park at Wilverley Plain, all wide open fire roads, a small section of road riding, bit of a short uphill drag near the end
- Badbury Rings is an Iron Age Hill Fort and this ride take you around the hill fort. The ride starts from the back of Kingston Lacy but you can always start from the Badbury Rings car park. A few small hills to negotiate a couple of which can be more difficult in the winter if wet due to the heavy clay soil. This ride is actually 10.5 miles not the 9.3 reported.
- Old Harry Rocks and Corfe Castle a nice ride over the Purbeck Hills with views out across Poole Bay to the Isle of Wight right round to Swanage Sea front and Peveril Ledge and out across the Purbeck Hills. But this is not an easy ride with two very large climbs between Corfe Castle and Old Harry Rocks (of course what you ride up you must ride down 🙂 ). This ride can be ridden either way round and you can start from the Banks Arms at Studland or from Sandy Hill Lane in Corfe Castle. There is a section of road riding in Corfe Castle and a smaller section in Studland between the Banks Arm and Studland Heath.
- Throop Loop Starting and Finishing in the car Park at Brecon Close Northbourne, you ride along the River Stour passing through the enclosure at the end of the river foot path** (take the top path not the one that goes back along the river bank), make sure you close the gates. You exit the enclosure along a narrow path between a hedge and a field boundary fence, then cross a field which bring you out on to a road outside the sewer works!! Follow the road towards Throop Mill and take the path down the side of the mill then across the first small weir then out across the field towards the main river weirs. Cross the weir and turn right and follow the path, along the river bank. When you get to the gate go through the gate into the small field, this field can be very mud in the dip in the middle of the field in the winter. Exit the field via the gate and follow the track, if it is winter time the track is likely to be flooded stay close the the left handside. You will come to a pond, bear to the right and take the narrow path and cross the bridge, after crossing the bridge over the pond take the road and then take the first right. Follow the road after about quarter of a mile the bear left and then there is turning on your right over a bridge, take this road up to the main road. About 40 yards to the left of where you come out on the main road is the entrance into Ramsdown Forest follow the paths and then into Sopley Common. Leaving Sopley common opposite the rear entrance to the Industrial area at Hurn Airport, take the road for about quarter of a mile, then enter Hurn Forest, Zig Zag your way across the forest and then head toward Oakdeane Caravan park. Take the foot path toward the Moor River over the bridge and onto Parley Common which leads onto a bridleway which leads onto Parley Lane, follow the cycle path (read pavement) towards Hurn Airport, turn right opposite the Airport entrance towards Merritown, take the first right, follow the road to the end then take the path on the left through the trees into the fields which will lead you back to the Weir at Throop Mill and follow the river path back to Brecon Close.
- NOTE: 1) The path along the River Stour, from Oakdeane Caravan park and over the Moor River, are liable to flooding during periods of heavy rain.
- NOTE: 2) After crossing the second weir over the river, you turn right along the river path, you go through a gate into a small field then across the filed to another gate which leads into a lane. If this lane is flooded stay as close as you can to the left hand side of the lane as you can (as you look up the lane) the water level is quite low on this side (the right handside is water\mud upto your axle, you have been warned). Once you get to the slight right kink after 100 yds you will be OK
- NOTE: 3) **Since Mid 2015 the path along this section of the ride has been upgraded to a wide gravel track. This upgraded section continues down to the sewer works.
- Longham Loop via Horton Tower The ride starts from Haskin Garden centre at Longham, Bicycle World are next door to Haskins and open 7 days a week should you need assistance or just want to browse. Take the road toward the Wimborne, it can be quite busy so opt for the cycle path\pavement. When you reach the bye pass roundabout take the Colehill exit (3rd exit), staying on the road go up the hill and continue on until you get to the school where you will turn right and head towards Canon Hill Plantation. Many parts of this route get muddy during wet weather so care needs to be taken. The climb itself up to Horton Tower is not steep but the trail before the Horton Tower path and the path upto Horton Tower are heavily divetted from horse hoofs and make it a difficult ride. When you leave the run onto Holt Heath turn left (my GPS route show me making a mistake and turning right), if it is wet follow the path that runs parallel to the road and then turn right with the path, follows this right to the end turning right at the bottom.
- Moors Valley. A single track family trail for suitable for even the youngest member of your family. The route starts and finishes (different places) close to the visitor centre. The hard packed stone trail winds it way through the forest for just over 4 miles. While not taxing for the experienced riders the fun comes when you try to ride the trail at speed. Don’t try this during busy periods, it is a family trail after all