(Ride shown in Green: Nearby bridleways and byways suitable for MTB’s are shown in Blue)
This ride takes in some of the best and easiest bridlepaths in South-West Sheffield. Although there are more difficult bridleways in the area, and this route links to them, most of this route can be enjoyably done on a hybrid or touring bike. Where it isn’t suitable there are alternative routes. You will enjoy it best on a Mountain Bike.
We’re starting at Bingham Park, on NCN Route 6. Follow the Porter Valley up to Forge Dam and then the second turning off onto Ivy Cottage Lane. Take this up to Whiteley Woods Road, turn right and a short way take the bridleway to the right. This crosses Cottage Lane and continues to Ringinglow Road. Turn left and you will see another bridleway on the right. This is Coit Lane – follow this around the sports centre and it will take you to Whirlow Grange Farm (which has a shop and cafe).
If you’re on an MTB, Fenney Lane, which is quite steep and narrow, will be a doddle. Otherwise, take Broad Elms Lane r. Whirlow Lane, r. Croft Lane, r. Ecclesall Rd Sth which will take you to Whinfell Quarry Garden. Take the left turn to Limb Lane. About half a mile along you will see the entrance to Ecclesall Woods, follow this down and as you near the bottom, the bridleway turns to the left, but if you dismount and go straight along the footpath, there is a link to the right that takes you to Ryecroft Glen road. At the junction with Dore Rd turn right, up the hill a ways and left onto Victor Road. Left onto Cavendish Road and at the bottom you will see the entrance to the Water Lane bridleway. The bridleway has two tracks, the one on the right is smoothish tarmac, the one on the left is more technically challenging. At the bottom you are on Abbeydale Road near Dore Station.
Turn left and take this busy road to the junction with Abbey Lane, turn right with care. A few hundred yards up turn right for Beauchief Abbey Lane, which becomes a Drive, take this up to the top and turn left through the access barrier to continue on the unmade section to Hemper Lane. Throw a left here and at the Greenhill Roundabout take the third exit onto Greenhill Main Road. At the White Swan go through the barriers on the left onto School Lane becoming Greenfield Road. This will bring you to Chesterfield Rd South, use the pedestrian crossing and take the footpath directly adjacent. Turn left when you emerge on Little Norton Lane and keep an eye out for the track on the right that separates Graves Park from the Housing estate. This brings you out on Norton Lane, turn left and left again for Bunting Nook. If you go through Graves Park, don’t let the sheep eat your bike!
Here you are on the Heeley to Meadowhead cycle route that the council started but never completed. When you get to Hemsworth Rd take a left and quick right to go down Warminster Rd, but don’t get carried away – get ready to turn left again onto Mount View Road. At the bottom of this turn left to swoop down Woodland Rd past Newfield School, till you get to r. Lees Hall Rd and left to Lees Hall Place which is the last bit of rough stuff. Left onto Carfield Place and through the bus gate, onto Carfield Ave and left onto Lismore Rd (you are near the Meersbrook HPV Centre) left onto Meersbrook Road and just past the junction turn left onto Albert Rd. At the bottom cross Chesterfield Rd with care, under the railway bridge and you’ve joined the Sheaf Valley Route. Should you require refreshment at this point, the Sheaf View, the Brothers Arms and the White Lion are nearby (but make sure you’ve locked up your bike securely)