Edge of Kielder
Stats: 59 miles and 4880 feet of ascent
Cafes at Elsdon, Otterburn, Bellingham, Rothbury
Loop based in Rothbury, taking in the Alwinton valley, skirting the eastern fringe of the Kielder National Park and the plateau of Sweethope Loughs, on quiet roads and single track.
1. Starting at Rothbury head west and turn right at Thropton, then next left and go through Snitter.
2. Continue to Netherton and turn left to Alwinton.
3. At the bridge turn left, pass through Harbottle, turn right just before Sharperton and follow the river Coquet (“coke-it”), to rejoin the B6341 turning right.
4. Climb onto Bilsmoor Common (as featured in the Virgin Money Cyclone), and descend into Elsdon.
5. Veer right in the village and head for Otterburn. Briefly join the A696 for Otterburn.
6. Turn left in the village and pass the mill. Cross the A68 and go over Hareshaw Common and drop into Bellingham.
7. Turn left then right onto the Redesmouth road (also signed for NCN 10, Reivers).
8. Climb from the bridge at Redesmouth up the hill locally known as ‘vomit’ and cross the A68 onto Sweethope Lough windfarm. Carry on, pass the shoe tree, and cross the A696 at Knowesgate.
9. At the next junction turn left, then right at the end.
10. Turn left and pass Rothley lakes and follow the undulating road through Forestburngate all the way back to Rothbury.