We’ve tried to make the routes below interesting with a few historical references as we are not able to add any coffee stops with the current lockdown. Somewhere to have short stops are mentioned on some of the rides. Enjoy the wide variety of wildflowers and listen to the bird song along your route.
TIPS – Take a drink and snack and use your bell, particularly if you’re approaching walkers and cyclists from behind; there are lots of dog walkers on these rides.
10 May 2020: 24.4 km; 1 hr 16 mins. Click above to view map and full description.
10 May 2020: 2.2 km; 6 mins. Click above to view map and full description.
The Harland Way was constructed in 1992 on the triangle of railway lines created between 1874 and 1901. Following The Beeching Review of 1962, the railway was closed and the lines removed. The Triangle returned to nature and became an overgrown and muddy path. In 1992, Peter Harland, a keen cyclist and President of Wetherby Lions, saw an opportunity to upgrade The Triangle and following the example set by Harrogate Town Council who had refurbished the route from Spofforth to the Boundary with West Yorkshire, transformed it into an all weather route for walkers and cyclists alike. Members of the Lions engaged with Sustrans, who specialise in converting redundant railway lines into leisure facilities. Together, Yorkshire Electricity, Wetherby Lions and the Countryside Commission funded the project. Unfortunately, Peter Harland died before the project was completed but with agreement, the route was named The Harland Way in his memory and Leeds City Council agreed to maintain the route in perpetuity.
7 May 2020: 15.3 km; 48 mins. Click above to view map and full description.
7 May 2020: 15.8 km; 1 hr 21 mins. Click above to view map and full description.
This ride is classed as leisurely with the following provisos: the route crosses a railway line twice (each time supervised) and crosses the A59 twice (unsupervised); the lane between the A59 and the A168 is rough in places and has potholes, but is negotiable by road bike; and there is one steep hill out of Whixley to negotiate.
4 May 2020: 11.4 km; 35 mins. Click above to view map and full description.
4 May 2020: 10.8 km; 34 mins. Click above to view map and full description.
30 April 2020: 20.1 km; 1 hr 3 mins. Click above to view map and full description.
There are many wildflowers along this pretty route.
30 April 2020: 16.8 km; 53 mins. Click above to view map and full description.
It’s an undulating ride, challenging in places with its sharp uphills and steep downhills. The rewards are the beautiful views and profusion of wild flowers.
26 April 2020: 12.1 km; 38 mins. Click above to view map and full description.
26 April 2020: 21.4 km; 1 hr 7 mins. Click above to view map and full description.
26 April 2020: 15.1 km; 47 mins. Click above to view map and full description.
26 April 2020: 12.4km; 39 mins. Click above to view map and full description.
23 April 2020: 14.7 km; 46 mins. Click above to view map and full description.
A pleasant ride on cycle paths and minor roads, which may be explored in either direction depending on the prevailing wind. Wild flowers and pretty views abound.
Goosemoor Nature Reserve
15 April 2020: This lovely little ‘there and back’ ride starts at any point convenient to your home, so the mileage will depend upon your start point. However, a rough return distance from Wetherby is around 7 miles. Nothing strenuous.
Head up to take the A168 out of Wetherby, going north. In these days of social distancing, it’s better to cycle up the road towards Ox Close Lane. Turn left just before the flyover bridge and take the road to Cowthorpe. Over the A168, then over the A1(M) bridges and continue towards the village. As you get into the village and before the telephone box, look out for War Field Lane on your right. It has a dead-end sign at the entrance, but it does lead to houses new and old. Take this lane and follow it. Further along on the left-hand side is Goosemoor Nature Reserve, a haven for wildlife, birds, ducks and insects. There are two hides and books to check out what you’re seeing. A delightful place and looked after by volunteers.
Return by the same route, taking the slip road before the second bridge on your left to join the A168 and head south for Wetherby. You’ll find you can cycle nearly all the way to the Deighton Road roundabout by keeping to the hard shoulder on the left.
A Spring Ride to Spofforth from Wetherby
15 April 2020: Start Linton Road, Old Station Car Park; 7 miles circular
Leaving the Old Station Car Park at Linton Road in Wetherby, head towards the road bridge and go under, taking the left fork. Follow the Harland Way all the way to Spofforth. As you exit the cycle path, you will see between two rows of house. the entrance to Ginny Green Holes Playground (good for a rest, run around and a picnic).
Pick up the road again, East Park Road, and head towards the junction with the A661 between Wetherby and Harrogate. This can be a busy road so take care, cross over and turn right into the village. At the roundabout, with Castle Inn on the left and the village shop in front of you, turn right. Take the next left into Chapel Lane by the Church. There is a bench beside the Church next to the Spofforth Mounting Stone. When you arrive at the village green, turn right and follow this road, Canby Lane, into Clive Road all the way until it joins the Follifoot Road. On the left, you’ll find the Spofforth Millennium Garden, another good picnic spot.
Leave this garden and continue left around the corner, Spofforth Castle is on your right, another good stopping place and great for running around and exploring. Continue along this road until you reach the roundabout again, the village shop and Castle Inn on your right. Go straight across and continue until you reach East Park Road on your left, turn left and then pick up the Harland Way cycle path once again. Retrace your steps until you reach the junction where the Harland Way splits, take the right path and reach the Old Station Car Park once more.
If you wish, take the centre line between the two cycle ways which goes up an incline. Take a right into the field just by the cycle path entrance and you’ll reach The Little Toe bike track where there are log benches to sit on.
Enjoy your ride!
Sunny Day Ride
15 April 2020: Wetherby, Spofforth, Little Ribston, A168 cycle path, Wetherby. Approximately 10 miles. A really pleasant country lane ride with one serious uphill, but worth the effort. Lots of wild flowers along the way and Spofforth Village Shop to pick up supplies.
Leave from Old Station Car Park on Linton Road in Wetherby and head up to Spofforth on the Harland Way. Lots of people about so take care and ring your bell. At the end of the cycle path, join East Park Road and go on up to the junction with the A661. Turn right and at the roundabout turn right and set off across Crimple Beck on the A661. As the main road turns left, go straight ahead with care, up the steep hill towards Little Ribston. Once on top of the hill, it’s pretty much downhill all the way. It’s such a pretty quiet road with lovely views. At the T-junction in Little Ribston, go right and follow the road through the village and out the other side past the entrance to Ribston Hall. The road rises gently and at the sign for Cowthorpe, turn left. Follow the road downhill alongside the wood until you near the bridge going over the A168. Turn right and either pick up the cycle path back to Wetherby, or turn right at the junction with the road to head back towards Wetherby. You can cycle pretty much all the way to the roundabout on the hard shoulder if you don’t fancy the road. At the roundabout, take the third exit to get back into Wetherby.
15 April 2020: As this is a circular ride, you can drop into the ride at any point depending where you’re coming from. It’s an opportunity to enjoy the peace on the roads and the daffodils on the verges. The distance is around 4 miles.
For ease of explanation, we’ll start in Wetherby and head straight on down the High Street to the roundabout, straight on across the river bridge to the Wetherby roundabout (with the horse) and Privas Way. The daffodils are around in profusion at this point, take a minute to enjoy them, they’ll soon be over.
Take the cycle path on the left (1st exit) or you may wish to take advantage of the lockdown situation making it very quiet and cycle along on the road (A168). There may be quite a few people on the footpath/cycleway taking their once daily exercise, walking along where we would normally cycle, and they have priority.
Now follows four roundabouts, Walton Road, York Road, Sandbeck Way and Deighton Road where you go straight across, taking the 2nd exit on each occasion. Look out for cowslips along the verge. Just after the Deighton Road roundabout continuing along the road, look out for Mark Lane on your left, take this minor road into Kirk Deighton. More daffodils all the way along and a lovely view of the Church on the right through the trees behind the Cricket Club.
Turn left at the junction and follow the road down past the Bay Horse through the village to the junction with the Deighton Road, taking care as you turn right and head back into Wetherby.
Wetherby, Boston Spa & Newton Kyme Viaduct Ride
15 April 2020: There are picnic spots and little playgrounds on this ride, and you can also stop on the viaduct and enjoy the river. It’s around 8 miles and as its circular in nature, you can join it at any point convenient to your home.
Leave from Freeman’s Way cycle shelter, under the A1 bridge and head along the cycle path to Walton Gates. Cross carefully and rather than continuing along the cycle path, take the minor road ahead of you down Woods Lane. This lovely country lane winds its way past hedges on either side, a small copse on the right and continues slowly heading downhill towards Thorp Arch village.
Cross the river bridge over the Wharfe and get into gear for the uphill into Boston Spa village. Take your time and see if you can continue to cycle up to the junction. Well done!
The roads are reasonably quiet and currently, Bar Lane is closed to traffic by fly tipping but still take care as you go left at the T-junction and continue along the High Street. Enjoy the beautiful old buildings on your left and right. Boston Spa village was established in 1744 when John Shires discovered a sulphur spring in the magnesium limestone. It was known as Thorp Spa but declined when Harrogate became very popular as a spa town. It was not until the mid-19th century that it became Boston Spa. Recently, Penny Stables, has started Boston Spa, Wetherby & Villages Green Group which has a huge membership and can only grow in this current climate.
Continue until you reach the new Redrow estate on your left at Newton Kyme, on the site of the old Paper Mill. Just after the estate, take a left tarmac path with bollards barring the way to traffic. You are now on your way to the new viaduct link to Thorp Arch Estate. Just follow this path all the way, over the magnificently restored viaduct over the Wharfe and enjoy the swirl of the river underneath as it changes direction. On the viaduct look to your right and just as the river disappears around to the right, you can see where the probable original crossing point of the river was, St Mary’s Ford, not far from the Church of St Mary’s in Tadcaster.
This new cycle path is a delight! We have waited nearly 10 years for this link to be completed and it’s due to Redrow, Sustrans and Wharfedale Property Management working together to make it happen.
Continue on through the Thorp Arch Estate which was constructed during the Second World War as an Ordnance Factory. It was completed in 1942 and opened by King George and Queen Elizabeth. At its height, it employed 10,000 people working on three shifts throughout the 24 hrs and had its own railway network off the mainline. If you’re interested to know more, please use the contact form at the bottom of the Cycling Page.
Make your way all the way back to Wetherby.
A Wiggle Around Walton
15 April 2020: Start Freeman’s Way Cycle Shelter off Hallfield Lane; 7.33 miles circular
The Fox and Hounds in Walton village is closed currently but providing a free home delivery service for just about everything, including take-out meals. Tel: 01937 7842192.
Leaving the Freeman’s Way Cycle Shelter, head under the motorway bridge and pick up the Wetherby Railway Path all the way to Walton Gates crossing point by Sykes House Farm. On the way, you’ll pass the site of the old Racecourse Station on your left and cross over the racecourse road (take care when crossing). At Walton Gates, cross over the road with care and continue along the David Hall Mile, under the railway bridge and past the Old Engine Shed on your right. You’ll emerge on the Walton Road, cross with care as visibility isn’t great to the right.
Continue past the Breedon Concrete Works on your left, picking up the cycle path once more all the way to Street 1 on the Thorp Arch Estate. There’s a new cycle path on your right, which leads on to a newly restored viaduct over the river and on to the A659. Continue along Street 1 and follow the road around until you reach Street 7, turn left. When you reach George Moore’s on the right, take the right turn at the small crossroads and continue to the roundabout. Left at the roundabout.
Head along the road, and just after the left turn into Thorp Arch Estate, take the right turn into Walton village. Continue round to the left through the village, past the Church and round to the left. Pick up the new Walton Cycle Path just before the junction with the Wetherby Road. Take care as you must cross to get to the cycle path.
Continue and pick up the original Wetherby Railway Path back to Wetherby, taking care as you pass the junction with Sykes House Farm.
Enjoy your ride!