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Glorious Gravel: Yorkshire Moors

Thirsk, North Yorkshire

Organiser's Description

A mix of dense woodland and open moorland is in store for you on this punchy ride through one of the most sparsely populated and beautiful areas of England.

This hilly 80km route through the National Park starts in the old market town of Thirsk. A relaxed 10km warms up the legs before the first gravel section in Boltby Forest, which gets steeper towards the summit. After riding out into the open moorland, riders will enjoy uninterrupted gravel loops around the Bilsdale transmitter, before a descent and much needed rest in the village of Hawnby.

Another tough summit near Arden Hall and the reward is a cliff edge described as ‘The finest view in England’ by local author James Herriot, with flowing smooth gravel singletrack before a relaxed roll home to soak in the views of the vale of York.

Start Time



80 km

More Info

Event website

GPX Files

Pre Ride Briefing

Two Feed Stops

Free coffee & post ride pint

Ride marshals supporting you on the route

Thirsk, North Yorkshire

By road: Thirsk is only 9 miles from the main A1 road running North-South. Follow the A168 East off the A1.

By bus: There are bus services from the North (No. 70 & 153 Northallerton), West (No. 70 Ripon) and South (No. 30 & 30X York). Unfortunately it is not possible to travel to Thirsk directly by bus from the East. For those you need to change buses in York or Easingwold.

By train: Thirsk station has trains North to Middlesbrough and Sunderland and South to London King's Cross and Manchester.

A hilly but rewarding route presents some of the best views in North Yorkshire and endless gravel tracks from the very accessible base at Thirsk. There are three main climbs in the 80km ride, each one having varying gradients testing pacing and technique. The descents that follow range from focus requiring but satisfying to wide open and leisurely over the moors and through the valleys. The tarmac on this route is for warming up at the start and cooling down at the end, with the only mid-ride sections a useful occasion to eat and spin out the legs. A reference speed for the route was 18km/h taking nearly 5 hours to complete the full distance.

Start Time : From 7.30am

Finish time : Between 1pm and 4pm

Our events are open to all off-road bikes. While it is aimed primarily at gravel & adventure bikes, which are essentially fat tyred drop bar bikes, you are also most welcome on a mountain bike or cyclocross bike. We recommend a tyre width of 33+mm for most for our rides.

What to bring: You will be further from van support or facilities you would find in most towns than with our road trips, so it is advisable to take a little more with you: GPS device with route loaded; spare tube or tubeless plug, pump and/or CO2, mini tool, jacket and/or additional layers

We will email you the GPX route & a full breakdown of the route one week before the ride. Our route director will then be at the start to give you last minute advice and tips. You will be asked to select a start window which we will then confirm one week before the ride to ensure you roll out in group sizes based on current restrictions.


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