Troutsdale and Dalby loop by Dan Joyce

Troutsdale and Dalby loop by Dan Joyce

Dan Joyce

Even though the sea halves the directions you can cycle from Scarborough, there’s  some excellent riding available in what’s left, with the North York Moors and the Yorkshire Wolds in easy reach. I picked this route because it’s short enough to do on a summer evening or a bleak winter day, so I ride it more often – sometimes on test bikes for Cycle.

The start/finish at Throxenby Mere has a small carpark, but it’s an easy pedal from the railway station: pick up the Cinder Track behind Sainsbury’s and follow it as far as Woodlands Ravine. From the mere, you ride alongside Raincliffe Woods, then head north to Hackness. Leaving the village, you turn off into Troutsdale, a picturesque valley surrounded by fields and forestry. It carries few vehicles except farm traffic; you’ll get filthy without mudguards if it’s wet.

The road winds up the valley, culminating in a steep, hairpinned climb out of it. Then it’s a long, fast descent to Snainton. Don’t overcook this: there’s a T-junction at the bottom. From here, you could follow the busy A170 to Thornton le Dale, but it’s better taking back lanes as far as Wilton. Thornton le Dale has cafés and a bike shop.

You may be passed by cars carrying mountain bikes as you labour uphill towards Dalby Forest, England’s biggest trail centre. There’s a toll (£5+) to drive on the tarmac road into and through the forest, which cuts traffic tremendously and makes it perfect for relaxed road riding. There’s a couple of cafés and a bike shop at Low Dalby, if you haven’t stopped already. Don’t hang around at the top of the forest, however; midges are rife.

Take care down the steep descent of Bickley Gate as you leave the forest. A quiet lane with more ups and downs then takes you through Langdale End and back to Hackness, where you retrace your route.

The ride works equally well anticlockwise.


Level of ride 
Type of bike