Stage 1: Plymouth to Postbridge – The West Country Way
A part of your ride takes you along a designated mountain biking route
There are fewer restrictions on mountain bikers on these parts of your route. They are likely to be signposted with trail markers.
10.7 mi in total
Bike Touring Highlight
Mountain Biking Highlight (Segment)
Katherine Moore planned a gravel ride.
January 22, 2020
The official start of the first stage of the West Country Way is not until the Plymouth Hoe next to Smeaton's Tower, however here we start at your likely joining point at the train station, making the first stage 32 miles (51 km) long.
Start by leaving the station and heading south through the city to the Hoe, where you’ll find the iconic Smeaton’s Tower lighthouse looking out over the English Channel. Trace the coastline to the Barbican, over the cobbled streets and then take a network of cycle paths and roads out of the city heading east, crossing the River Plym and onto the traffic-free cycle route, the Plym Valley Trail.
You’ll gently climb up through Plymbridge Woods; in fact you’ll be climbing pretty much all of this stage as you go from near sea level up onto Dartmoor! Join the road soon after the Dewerstone, heading east now and continuing up onto the moor on Hoo Meavy climb.
As you pass Gutter Tor, the off road will start ‘proper’ – this is what you’ve been waiting for! Named after the disused tin mine here, Eylesbarrow is a fast and fun section of singletrack leading up to Eylesbarrow summit.
Take Ivybridge Lane singletrack all the way north to Princetown; home of Dartmoor’s famous high security prison. Good news; there is also a fantastic cafe here and village shop – bet you’ll be hungry already! Then head east out of the town, along singletrack over Royal Hill before joining a doubletrack gravel road to Hexworthy Cross, then on lanes past Dartmeet to rejoin a doubletrack riding against the flow of the East Dart river.
Cross the river twice before entering Bellever Forest, where you’ll find a fun and technical singletrack to finish the stage. We suggest wild camping here in a secluded spot, although if you’d rather a roof to stay under, there’s a YHA Youth Hostel just a short ride north in Postbridge – also a great place to get an evening meal in the East Dart Hotel.
January 23, 2020
Hiking Collection by Kit P
Hiking Collection by komoot
Bike Touring Collection by Halfords UK
Bike Touring Collection by Kit P
Hiking Collection by sianannalewis
Hiking Collection by Dan Hobson
Mountain Biking Collection by komoot
Mountain Biking Collection by Katherine Moore
Bike Touring Collection by Amy