Any one cycled this route - Coast and Castles

ozboz

Veteran
Location
Richmond ,Surrey
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This is my intended tour this year , I’ll contine the coastal route after Berwick , but may have a look at Kelso if the races are on ! ,ive been threatening to do the this for a good few years now but come June / July I’m off !! Maybe even earlier , camping is what I want to do , so any good tips on stays near a good pub are most welcome,!
 
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Pedaljunkie

Regular
Cycled the coastal route a couple of years ago, from Edinburgh to Lincoln. We stopped in Berwick, and then on to Newcastle. Berwick was a good stopping point with several good pub options, but be aware that the route has long stretches with no civilisation for miles! Also the NCN1 over much of the Northumberland stretch is unsurfaced, with some very poor sections which are essentially on the beach! I would recommend at least 32mm tyres. Great route, and beautiful scenery. Enjoy!
 

NorthernDave

Never used Über Member
I've done bits of it, mainly around Seahouses and Bamburgh.
That's on road - the tarmac quality on the country lanes was poor in places but I was on a carbon road bike with skinny tyres and there were no issues.

As has been said above (and elsewhere on here), parts are unsurfaced, essentially tracks through fields and can get muddy in wet weather - I think the stretch from Belford up to Berwick has caused a few comments in the past.
@mjr might have a few words on this?

Otherwise it's a fantastic part of the world and if you're lucky with the weather there are few places finer.
 
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ozboz

ozboz

Veteran
Location
Richmond ,Surrey
I have had a change of plan , I’m going to Berwick then heading SW into the National Park and on toward Carlisle ending up in
St Bees , ( hopefully ! )
And then , if ( a big if !) threre is anything left of me I may travel down the west coast to Blackpool and on to Our Kids in Oldham , may wishful thinking but hey !
I think I’ll need a more suitable bike , I’ll have a look around ,
 

mjr

Comfy armchair to one person & a plank to the next
As has been said above (and elsewhere on here), parts are unsurfaced, essentially tracks through fields and can get muddy in wet weather - I think the stretch from Belford up to Berwick has caused a few comments in the past.
@mjr might have a few words on this?
Only secondhand swearing because I've not ridden that bit yet. The map on https://cycle.travel makes it easy to see what is unsurfaced and downrates them approriately.
 
Location
London
I have had a change of plan , I’m going to Berwick then heading SW into the National Park and on toward Carlisle ending up in
St Bees , ( hopefully ! )
And then , if ( a big if !) threre is anything left of me I may travel down the west coast to Blackpool
Via the Knott End ferry? Check that it's still running though - was under threat a while ago. Have used it with a bike.

You can then do a lot of the ride to Blackpool traffic free along the various upper and lower proms.

If you head further round the coast, decent spoons in St Annes in a quiet back-street with lots of outside seating to sit with a bike.
 

Pale Rider

Legendary Member
I have had a change of plan , I’m going to Berwick then heading SW into the National Park and on toward Carlisle ending up in
St Bees , ( hopefully ! )
And then , if ( a big if !) threre is anything left of me I may travel down the west coast to Blackpool and on to Our Kids in Oldham , may wishful thinking but hey !
I think I’ll need a more suitable bike , I’ll have a look around ,
Sounds like a tootle through Kielder Forest is on the menu.

Proper darkness in there, no light pollution which is why it's home to an observatory.

Worth timing the ride to be there at night, even with the naked eye the sky is spectacular in clear conditions.

https://kielderobservatory.org/
 
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ozboz

ozboz

Veteran
Location
Richmond ,Surrey
Kielder forest is in the menu, it sounds as though it’s a bit Middle Earth ! Hopefully the Fellowship will be there to see me through !
 
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ozboz

ozboz

Veteran
Location
Richmond ,Surrey
I do believe I once travelled on the Knotts End Ferry, but many years ago , I’d forgotten about it to be honest .
 

Pale Rider

Legendary Member
Kielder forest is in the menu, it sounds as though it’s a bit Middle Earth ! Hopefully the Fellowship will be there to see me through !
Kielder Forest Drive takes you east to west from the A68 at Otterburn and enters the forest at the atmospherically named Black Middens Castle.

It's three quid for cars, might be free for bikes.

Described as 'unsealed' it should be doable on a tourer.

That takes you through to Kielder Castle/village, which is a few hundred metres from the observatory.

Camping is not my thing, but there are a few sites on the western side of Kielder Water.

You could do worse than do the 26 mile circuit of the reservoir if you are looking for an excursion.

It's maintained by Northumbrian Water who have plenty of money, so the path is always in good order.

Surprising amount of climbing for a lakeside circuit which you might think would be flat.

https://www.forestryengland.uk/kielder-castle/kielder-forest-drive
 
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ozboz

ozboz

Veteran
Location
Richmond ,Surrey
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Looks like there’s some climbing to do In this NP ,and this route is only part of the plan , I hope my old legs are up to it !
 
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ozboz

ozboz

Veteran
Location
Richmond ,Surrey
So what's your route from Berwick to Carter Bar (which appears to be the start of above profile)?
I’m hoping to enter the NP at Kilham or West Newton further NE of that point, the App I have doesn’t really allow me to plot an accurate route from kilham area , I am guessing it will be just as picturesque which ever way I go and hilly , I am a bit of a hill whimp mainly due to left leg not firing on all four so to speak , I’m going to Waterstones today to look at the OS Map section of the area and see the Park trails that I can cycle in more detail . To be honest I am happy reading and plotting with OS Maps , must be an old Soldier thing , a good back up also apparently the mobile roll out is not 100% in that area from what I can make out
 
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