17km of New Stuff in Kielder Forest

by Ben Haworth 8

Bikers trying out the red trail in Kielder Water & Forest Park and on the 1.2 kilometre timber `fly-over’ - the longest of its kind in England - built to speed riders over boggy terrain. Pic by Mark Pinder.
Bikers trying out the red trail in Kielder Water & Forest Park and on the 1.2 kilometre timber `fly-over’ - the longest of its kind in England - built to speed riders over boggy terrain. Pic by Mark Pinder.

Riders will get chance to tackle its twists, jumps and rapid descents for the first time on 25 and 26 April. The trail’s public opening has been timed to coincide with the staging of the Saab Salomon Avalanche Trophy 2009 at Kielder Water & Forest Park the same weekend.
 
Over 300 top professional and amateur bikers from across Europe will be competing to claim points in the five-legged competition, which also takes at other locations like Alpe d’Huez in the French Alps.  Kielder hosts the opening round.

 

 

Alex MacLennan, Recreation and Tourism Manager with the Forestry Commission, commented: “What a fantastic weekend this will be.  We’ve had incredible interest in the new red route from bikers across the nation. It’s taken five months to build and much longer to design, blending great views with technical challenges, while at the same time steering clear of sensitive conservation areas.  If that’s not enough reason to saddle up, you can then watch superstar bikers go head-to-head in the Avalanche Trophy”
 
The Avalanche Trophy begins with a prologue at 5pm on 25 April at Kielder Castle, followed by the main event the following day between 8am and 5pm. Spectators can view the action free of charge. 
 
Last year Kielder Water & Forest Park hosted the prestigious event for the first time in England and riders gave the trails rave reviews. Racing will take place on the Deadwater red and black routes, but bikers will also be invited to sample the new red trail, which could be used for the elite competition in future years. 
 
Elisabeth Rowark, Director of the Kielder Partnership, said: “The exhilarating red trail is another milestone in our vision to create a world class visitor destination at Kielder Water & Forest Park. Over the past few years facilities have been transformed, creating sustainable and year-round attractions. Being selected to host the Avalanche Trophy again is also another tremendous boost to the whole area.”
 
During the Saab Salomon Avalanche Trophy weekend Kielder Castle will host a bike village with trade stands and a barbeque on Saturday night. Everyone is welcome to attend. Background to the Avalanche Trophy 2009 can be found at www.avalanchetrophy.com
 
Details of the new red route:
The new red route sets out from Kielder Castle and heads into Lewisburn, with its tall trees and stunning river views. It then climbs to an altitude of 1,600 feet and crosses over boggy ground using a one kilometre, one metre-wide wooden broadwalk – the longest “North Shore” of its kind anywhere in the UK. Five truck loads of Kielder grown timber were used in its construction. The route then drops down past the world-famous £480,000 Kielder Astronomical Observatory for a descent to Kielder Castle. 

One of the Avalanche organisers, Clive Forth, tackling the red trail just after the North Shore section. Pic by Mark Pinder.
One of the Avalanche organisers, Clive Forth, tackling the red trail just after the North Shore section. Pic by Mark Pinder.

For more details log-on to www.visitkielder.com

Comments (8)

  1. Is this the trail that Ian Jones worked on?

  2. Sounds cool.
    I noticed that there’s a rally at Kielder this weekend. Does anyone know if it will affect the trails around Kielder?

  3. Sounds good – 1km North Shore!

    Is this the trail that will link to Newcastleton?

  4. schweet – hoping some of this is used on the avalanche event, for I will be there….

  5. Skyspace has to be the coolest shelter on any trail that I have been on.

  6. The northshore is much wider than 1 meter though. The main technical issue about it will be going to fast on it a shooting off the edge. Anyway When in Northumberland I shall not be going so readily to the seven stanes anymore it is a good trail. thanks.

  7. I agree GEDA, Skyspace is very cool, see how many times you can ride around the inside before getting dizzy. I reckon it would be good as one of those ‘things in circles’ that are used on BBC1, replacing the hippos who are frankly implausible.

    Describing the northshore as a flyover is more appropriate, its very wide and from a technical point standpoint rather disappointing. The view however is stunning and more than makes up for the effort of climbing up there. The descent after the northshore back to Kielder village is excellent too.

    As it stands the new red is less of a technical challenge than the existing red on Deadwater, but at the same time it feels like more of an adventure. Its well worth coming up to try.

    Carbon 337: The long term plan is for this trail to link up with Newcastleton.

  8. It’s great that they have put soemthing interesting in this side of the forest. I used to do the Diamond back races there in the early 90’s and they consisted almost entirely of forest track. Putting some single track on the Kielder-Newcastleton link will really expand what’s available.

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