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Bristol gravel routes — Doorstep exploring and urban dirt

Katherine Moore

Bristol gravel routes — Doorstep exploring and urban dirt

Bike Touring Collection by Katherine Moore

7

Tours

33:11 h

278 mi

14,425 ft

Tried and tested, adapted and improved, this is a Collection of my favourite gravel and off-road loops to explore outside of the city limits of Bristol. With the Cotswolds to the north, Mendips Hills to the south and the Wessex Downs to the east, we’re absolutely spoilt for great riding here in the capital of the South-West, and that’s not just limited to the road!

Here you’ll find routes suitable for a quick blast right the way through to big days out; or you could make a few of these into a weekend bikepacking adventure, such as to Cheddar Gorge in the Mendips or to the Cotswolds. Check out the Tour descriptions for more information about the terrain and elevation, which varies from smooth and fast-flowing gravel roads suitable for all abilities to narrow, steep and chunky singletrack trails.

Do you love exploring wide byways, hidden bridleways and delicious singletrack on your doorstep? This is for you. You’ll be surprised how much you can discover when you take the path less travelled.

All Tours in this Collection start and finish from Business As Usual, Bristol's friendly cycling hub. It's a great place to meet friends, enjoy a coffee or steamed chocomel (yes, really) from Camber and get any last minute spares from Forever Pedalling. If you're visiting Bristol, it's just a 10 minute ride from Temple Meads Station or right next to Lawrence Hill Station.

Ideally for these Tours you’ll need a cyclo-cross, gravel or mountain bike with tyres at least 40 mm wide. You’ll enjoy them most in the summer months when it’s drier, making the trails dusty and much easier to tackle. However, as long as you’re okay with getting your feet wet, there should be nothing stopping you enjoying them year-round!

If you’re visiting Bristol, you’ve got a few transport options, but your best plan is to come by train. Bristol Temple Meads is the central station and very well connected, but do make sure you check if you need to book your bike on when you purchase your ticket.

On The Map

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Tours & Highlights

  • Intermediate
    02:36
    23.2 mi
    8.9 mph
    800 ft
    800 ft
    Intermediate gravel ride. Good fitness required. Mostly paved surfaces. Suitable for all skill levels.

    Heading out of the city of Bristol to the north-east, this short Tour takes in some of the closest byways and bridleways in the green belt, made easily accessible thanks to the Bristol to Bath Path, a traffic-free way out of the centre of the city.

    

    The length, accessibility and easy nature of this Tour

    by Katherine Moore

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  • Difficult
    05:47
    48.8 mi
    8.4 mph
    2,175 ft
    2,175 ft
    Expert mountain bike ride. Very good fitness required. Advanced riding skills necessary.

    If you're looking for a big day out with every kinda British trail type going, the Cotswolds is always a great place to start. From fine dusty gravel roads along the Cotswold Way to bumpy cow fields and leafy forest singletrack of the Monarch's Way, this Tour has a little bit of everything.

    

    From inner

    by Katherine Moore

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  • Difficult
    04:27
    37.6 mi
    8.5 mph
    2,575 ft
    2,550 ft
    Expert mountain bike ride. Good fitness required. Advanced riding skills necessary. Some portions of the Tour may require you to push your bike.

    Stretching from the Siston Common in the west around South Bristol to Ashton Court in the east, this is the southern half of the Bristol Green Belt route. The Bristol Green Belt route fully circumnavigates the city, taking in many sections of unpaved ways in the surrounding rural areas and some urban

    by Katherine Moore

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  • Intermediate
    03:20
    27.4 mi
    8.2 mph
    1,475 ft
    1,475 ft
    Intermediate gravel ride. Good fitness required. Mostly paved surfaces. Suitable for all skill levels.

    I can’t take credit for this one; local gravel and cyclo-cross Kev (komoot.com/user/787040171960) has found all the best bridleways and byways in the Keynsham area to the south-east of Bristol. You’ll find a lot of his highlights in this Tour!

    

    This is a really hilly loop that doesn't go far from Bristol

    by Katherine Moore

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  • Intermediate
    04:44
    46.0 mi
    9.7 mph
    2,125 ft
    2,100 ft
    Intermediate mountain bike ride. Good fitness required. Advanced riding skills necessary.

    This triangular route heading east is one of my favourite local gravel loops, and a pretty big day out too. Taking in parts of the Cotswold Way, the stunning bridleways of Castle Combe, the Fosse Way bridleway descent into the city of Bath and then an easy finish following the river and the traffic-free

    by Katherine Moore

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  • Difficult
    04:21
    37.1 mi
    8.5 mph
    1,400 ft
    1,400 ft
    Expert gravel ride. Good fitness required. Some portions of the Tour may require you to push your bike.

    A corking circular route that heads to the north from Bristol, touching on the edges of the Cotswolds. You’ll explore Bristol’s green outer edges and visit Chipping Sodbury.

    

    With a few more lanes than other routes in this Collection, this is a great gravel bike route, or one for when you only have a

    by Katherine Moore

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  • Difficult
    07:56
    58.2 mi
    7.3 mph
    3,925 ft
    3,900 ft
    Expert gravel ride. Very good fitness required. Some portions of the Tour may require you to push your bike.

    In Bristol we’re spoilt for riding. The Cotswolds to the north, the Wessex Downs to the west, Wales a short ride away and the Mendips to the south. Classified as an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, the Mendip Hills are a chain of rolling green fields, secluded woodland and the well-known rocky outcrops

    by Katherine Moore

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Collection Stats

  • Tours
    7
  • Distance
    278 mi
  • Duration
    33:11 h
  • Elevation
    14,425 ft

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Bristol gravel routes — Doorstep exploring and urban dirt

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