Three Rivers – Northumberland
Stats: 61 miles and 1650 feet of ascent
Cafes at: Consett, Thornley Woods, Quayside, South Shields, Sunderland
Using National Cycle Network routes 1, 7 and 14 along the Rivers Wear, Derwent and Tyne on a mix of road, tarmac path and solid track.
1. Starting at the Marina, head along the river initially on NCN 1 past the university and under the Wearmouth Bridge to join NCN 7.
2. Follow route 7 along the Wear through a mixture of parkland and former railways out of Sunderland, through Washington and Birtley and past Beamish museum and on into Consett.
3. Pick up NCN 14 for Rowlands Gill/Tynemouth at the C2C junction. Follow the former railway path along the Derwent valley through woodland and past old railway stations and the Gibside Estate until the Derwent meets the river Tyne.
4. Turn right and continue on route 14 around the Metrocentre and into Dunston.
5. Turn left at the Tudor Rose pub and use the new section along the riverside to Gateshead Quays. Pass the swing bridge and go under the Tyne Bridge past the Sage and Baltic Gallery. Continue through the industrial estate, along Felling shore path, Bill Quay City Farm and Hebburn Riverside Park to Jarrow.
6. Once past Tyne Dock and into South Shields where the route meets NCN 1, follow it to the coast then south along the edge of the North Sea past Souter Lighthouse through Whitburn and Roker and back to the River Wear.