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Katherine Moore

River Otter and Common — Exeter gravel routes

River Otter and Common — Exeter gravel routes

41.5 mi
8.2 mph
2,450 ft
2,450 ft
Expert gravel ride. Very good fitness required. Mostly paved surfaces. Suitable for all skill levels.


More information

Includes a movable bridge

Check opening times.

1 in total

Tour Overview

Starting Point
38 yd

Exeter Quay

Bike Touring Highlight

5.32 mi

Goosemoor Nature Reserve

Bike Touring Highlight

6.72 mi

Exton to Woodbury bridleway

Mountain Biking Highlight (Segment)

13.5 mi

Bear Lane and Shortwood Lane

Mountain Biking Highlight (Segment)

14.5 mi

Hayeswood Lane

Mountain Biking Highlight (Segment)

17.1 mi

River Otter bike paths

Bike Touring Highlight (Segment)

26.0 mi

Harpford and Aylesbeare Common

Bike Touring Highlight

28.0 mi

Venn Ottery Common

Bike Touring Highlight

41.5 mi



Tour Profile


Singletrack: 0.48 mi
Path: 8.64 mi
Cycleway: 8.78 mi
Street: 4.18 mi
Road: 19.4 mi
State Road: < 109 yd


Unpaved: 9.14 mi
Cobblestones: < 109 yd
Paved: 18.7 mi
Asphalt: 12.3 mi
Unknown: 1.30 mi

Weather Forecast

Katherine Moore planned a gravel ride.

February 20, 2021


  • Katherine Moore

    Taking in parts of Woodbury Common, the River Otter, Aylesbeare and Venn Ottery Common, this tour offers great on and off road riding year round, though there may be some big puddles in winter!

    From Central Exeter, leave the city via NCN Route 2 to Topsham, where you can pause to take in the marshland birds at RSPB Goosemoor before taking the bridleway track from Exton towards Woodbury. Take lanes to Pine Ridge, entering the common at the point where you might be lucky enough to see the grazing Highland cattle next to Bystock Nature Reserve.

    Cross the common on wide gravel tracks, then onto a narrow lane to Dalditch Farm, where you turn onto the muddy tracks of Bear Lane and Shortwood Lane, climbing up to Hayes Wood. There are more muddy farm tracks up next with Hayeswood Lane and Tidwell Lane to lead you through Kersbrook to the River Otter.

    The River Otter cycle track is actually an old road that runs next to the river, but high up on a steep cliff, looking down through woodland to the water below. Cows graze on the curvaceous hillside on your right and the undulating riverside road is a real gem.

    At Otterton, you can turn back towards Exeter, past Bicton Park and back up onto Woodbury Common past the castle, then heading north on gravel roads to pass over Harpford and Aylesbeare Common on a lane to Venn Ottery Common. Known as the Pebblebed Heaths, these ancient habitats are crucial for our wonderful East Devon wildlife.

    From Aylesbeare, the way back into Exeter mainly follows small lanes and cycleways past the airport before the busier urban roads.

    • February 23, 2021

Katherine Moore

River Otter and Common — Exeter gravel routes