Yorkshire is England’s largest county. It is home to 5.5 million people. It is also home to 25 major rivers and the living things that depend on the water. The Yorkshire Divide takes 10 of these rivers and the bridleways, moorland singletrack and ‘B’ roads that run along them on the high ground and across the floodplain as the inspiration for the ‘Source to Sea Trail’.
This is a new circular route that takes you from Pennine moors where many of the best known rivers in Yorkshire have their source among cotton grass and heather, along wave after wave of Dales valleys clad in ash and oak till you reach the coast before returning across the Vale of York and back over the Pennines.
The route passes through semi-wild green spaces, on through the centre of market towns like Richmond and York and onto traffic-free cycle paths along canal towpaths and reclaimed railway lines. The full 909km route takes you across the Humber Estuary on the world’s longest cycle lane on a suspension bridge and back over the floodplain and onto the edge of the Peak District to return to Hebden Bridge. The ‘short’ 750km route cuts south from Selby to Castleford to rejoin the main route along the River Calder.
On the event riders will experience two sharply contrasting landscapes. The western section around Hebden Bridge, past Malham and up to Keld and onto Whitby then Scarborough is on bridleways and tracks across open moorland and steep valley sides. The eastern section from Malton down to York and onto Castleford is on free-flowing greenways and quiet ‘B’ roads across the level floodplain.
The inaugural event starts in Hebden Bridge next to the Blazing Saddles bike shop. Riders are provided with an event hub, field tested gpx file and a ‘dot watching’ platform for their personal gps trackers plus an embroidered cloth badge made in Leeds and other goodies. The event is supported by RESTRAP and local cycling community hubs such as the Dales Bike Centre outside Reeth and Stage 1 Cycles in Keld. The adventure though is entirely yours.