After a lazy start to the day I managed to get my act together and made my way up to the West Ridings for a day in Last of the Summer Wine countryside. I parked up in Penistone and dropped down and then climbed up past Scout Dike Reservoir, from there I headed around to Gunthwaite Hall before tackling Heald Head and its two ford crossings and the woodland above Bentcliff Hall before dropping into Cawthorne.

_ Stone paved bridleway _ Rolling countryside _ The sun came out just at the right time for this photo _

From the trail leading across towards Barnby Furnace, the sight of the M1 and Barnsley remind you that you’re not far from built up areas. The Silkstone Trail, a former waggonway, leads up to Silkstone, from where there seems to be a huge amount of climbing up past Blacke Dam for which you never seem to earn back.

The Transpennine Trail is joined just after the Railway bridge adjacent to Coates Great Wood and heads off towards Hull along a disused railway line. After a brief section on the A629, the route drops down over the spectacular Willow Bridge over the River Don. From there a bridleway trail crosses land heading towards Roughbirchworth, but is a section characterised by a staggering number of farm gates. It soon forgotten though as the trail drops back into Penistone.

_ Sweeping avenue _ The Dove Valley _ Willow Bridge over the River Don _

Not a particularly big route, but one that was probably ideal for a winter ride in wet and muddy conditions. It’s given me a taste of sections of the Transpennine Trail that I hadn’t ridden before and it’s again raised the prospect of riding the whole route, one day. For now I’m happy to read other peoples accounts.

Author: Cris Bloomfield

Usually mountain biking in the North.

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