The Maybecks Meander

A circular route on forestry track, bridleway and minor roads. The route passes through woodland, up onto the Whinstone Ridge, down into sheltered farmland and passes the Falling Foss waterfall. Riding conditions are best after a dry spell.

From the Forestry Commission car park head uphill on the broad, hard pack road. Ignore the way-marked trail to the right and continue up to and through a gate (889022). Keep riding past a small reservoir (885016) until the broad fire break with a path (waymarked with a blue arrow) on your right at (884013). Take this path and ride up to the Whinstone Ridge (876016).

The track along the ridge is mostly ridable, but is rather rutted in places. Ride NW-ish for 2 kms or so. A few hundred metres past the pylons (860024) take the narrow, twisting bridleway on the right down a heather covered, peaty slope. If the peat is dry, this is a great ride. However if it is sodden, the path is a mud bath. At (864029), near an inscribed boundary stone, cross the beck and follow the path tending right. This contours around the hill for more good, tricky riding. This brings you onto the Leas Head Road, a farm track crossing a few fields. Eventually you drop down to Leas Head Farm (882034). On the map, the bridleway goes through the farmyard, but there is a cut-through to the right of the barn.

A bridge crosses the beck at (881033) after which the bridleway continues uphill. Turn left at the top (883031) and ride past Foss Farm. Continue down an interesting bumpy track to a bridge at the bottom of an attractive, wooded valley. This is very close to Falling Foss waterfall if you fancy sight-seeing. Once over the bridge, ride up the track/bridleway which becomes a minor road. It feels like the hill goes on forever, but the surface is good and it is doable if you are fit. At Red Gate (892047) turn sharp right and a further 2 kms of quiet road riding takes you across Sneaton Low Moor and down to the Maybecks car park.

There are lots of waymarked walks from Maybecks, detailed on a board in the car park. The one up the valley to John Bond's Sheep House is particularly pretty and very sheltered.

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