- Dramatic hills and remote valleys of Northumberland National Park
- Biking through the least populated county in England
- Trying out a selection of fun, flowing singletrack
- Exploring remote bridleways and little known rights of way
- Pease pudding and stotties in a local country pub
- Rolling by wide open countryside with sweeping views and numerous sandstone crags
I always look at Skedaddle first when I look for a biking holiday!
Newcastle is our chosen rendezvous point for the Sandstone Way ride. With its excellent rail and air connections, getting to Newcastle is easy. If the train is your preferred transport mode, we will be happy to collect you from the Newcastle train station at the designated time.
After meeting up early evening, you’ll have the chance to get to know the rest of the group and chat with the Skedaddle guide about the next few days of riding. The meal tonight will be taken at one of the many friendly restaurants on the nearby Quayside. With the Millennium Bridge lit up at night, it makes a great backdrop to this bustling part of Newcastle.
- Meals: Breakfast, lunch
- Ascent: 750m
After breakfast we transfer up the coast to historic Berwick-upon-Tweed (1.5hr), where we will unload our bikes and set off on our journey.
Our first stage takes us down the dramatic Northumberland coast with incredible views over Lindisfarne before turning inland and starting our exploration of the countryside and moors of Northumberland. Farm tracks and forest roads take us past St Cuthbert’s Cave. After our picnic lunch we pass through several quaint villages and below Chillingham Castle before arriving into Wooler for a pint of real ale and an evening of local hospitality.
- Meals: Breakfast, lunch
- Ascent: 1400m
Our second day of riding takes us deep into the wilderness of Northumberland. Heading south over open moorland trails we pass through the idyllic Breamish valley before tackling the cheeky climb over Wether Hill (and the well-earned descent that follows). A section of woodland singletrack keeps us on our toes as we descend down to the beautiful town of Rothbury for lunch.
A climb past the Simonside hills leads us into Harwood Forest and past the spooky Winter’s Gibbet before we tackle some tricky farm tracks and a final traverse alongside the River Rede to our days finish near the village of West Woodburn.
- Meals: Breakfast, lunch
- Ascent: 850m
Our final day of cycling takes us through border country, across challenging bridleways and twisting trails. We pass through Bellingham and skirt past the woodland of Kielder Forest Park and Northumberland National Park. We negotiate a network of bridleways and stream crossings, with a few more cheeky climbs to tackle before our last picnic in the tiny village green in Simonburn.
Eventually we pass over the line of Hadrian’s Wall and enjoy a final descent down to the historic market town of Hexham to celebrate our accomplishment. We’ll have a short transfer back to Newcastle for our return plane or train.
The Sandstone Way uses varied terrain along its whole length taking best advantage of an interesting mix of double-width dirt tracks, sections of singletrack, unsurfaced lanes, bridleways and of all types as well as byways and little known unclassified country roads (UCRs).
The terrain can be rough and there are occasional steep and technical sections. Inevitably, there are a number linking sections of quiet minor roads and surfaced country lanes.
Northumberland is a hilly county and significant climbs will be encountered every day of the trip. A good level of fitness is key to your enjoyment of the route.
Mountain Biking Grade
Distances of 25-50 miles / 40-80 kms per day
Aimed at regular cyclists who have a degree of off road experience
Some moderate and difficult technical sections
Our grading guidelines have been carefully created based on our many years of cycling experience, as well as customer feedback from our trips. Of course, if you're still struggling to figure out where you fit on the scale, do feel free to give us a quick call and we'll be more than happy to help!
For more information about our grading system click here.
Is this suitable for you?
If you have some experience of off road riding on a variety of terrain, and would like to do more, a grade 3 trip could be for you. These rides give you elements of our higher grade trips but at a manageable level with sections of singletrack (narrow trails wide enough for one rider) and shorter steep sections (both up and down) which require more bike handling ability. A day’s ride can see you on the trails for around 8 hours (with breaks) and covering between 25-50 miles depending on the terrain. If you’re generally fit and manage to ride regularly this could be the level for you.
There was such variety every day that it’s difficult to pick a favourite. I had not previously realised the beauty of the Northumberland countryside!
Dates & Prices
Are you keen to only travel with your family or friends? Struggling to find the right date? Well, we can organise a private departure for this tour and tailor aspects to suit your group's specific needs. Contact our friendly team and we'll help you turn your dream into reality.
A) Accommodation (shared twin / double en suite rooms)
B) Meals as itinerary (B=Breakfast, L=Lunch, D=Dinner)
C) Full support service including a guide qualified in First Aid and a back up vehicle carrying spares, snacks and extra equipment not needed on your bike
D) GPX files available upon request
E) Scheduled train station transfers on arrival and departure days
What's not Included
A) Personal clothing and equipment
B) Travel insurance
C) Bar bills, telephone calls, souvenirs, etc.
D) Bike & helmet hire (available if required)
E) Travel or flight costs and charges for travelling with your bike (if applicable)
F) Single room option (may be available if required)
G) Entrance fees to cultural or historical sites and visitor centres
H) Other optional activities
8 reasons to cycle Northumberland
Here's why we think this often-underrated destination is perfect for those seeking a holiday at the speed of the bike...
Our travel guide to 2021
Travel with the seasons! We highlight some of the incredible experiences we can’t wait to share with you...
Sandstone Way: the video
Get inspired by our remote and scenic trip in Northumberland.
Cathy, London, UKGreat service...
Great service from the initial enquiry to the end of the trip. Helpful in accommodating late arrival etc. Efficient booking process and plenty of written instructions; great that you could just phone and chat through arrival plans etc. Made the whole process very easy and straightforward. Fantastic B&B in Wooler; very high quality room, service and breakfast. Would definitely stay here again. B&B on second night very comfortable with great breakfast. The refreshments had plenty of choice and were always delivered with a high level of service. I really enjoyed all 3 days and can’t really pick out one over the rest; beautiful scenery, mix of terrains. Our tour leader was great; informative not only about the riding but the local area, with the patience of a saint! All three of the guides were very friendly, helpful and chatty. They really set a great tone for the weekend from the outset.
Outdoors Radar (2018), Saddle Skedaddle donations support future of Northumberland cycling routeAs seen in the press...
Newcastle-based cycling holiday company, Saddle Skedaddle, is helping to ensure the long-term future of one of the country’s most popular cycling routes by donating a percentage of its sales to the maintenance and up-keep of the Sandstone Way in Northumberland.
Colin, Derbyshire, UKKeep up the good work!
When I booked to go on this trip it was how much but after doing the ride it was worth every single penny and more. The service from the team from Skedaddle was spot on nothing was to much. Aways there to help and full of knowledge. Food and drinks provided on the ride days was plentiful and lots to choose from. Matt was a great tour leader keeping everyone happy full of knowledge to share of local erea we riding. Keep up the good work!
Barry, Bedfordshire, UKI enjoyed all of the days!
I enjoyed all of the days, but Sunday, the big day out, was probably my favourite despite a rather damp morning. Varied terrain, challenging hills and a real sense of travel. All of the guides did a great job. Open, friendly, unfailingly helpful when required on or off the bike. The tour leader had excellent knowledge of the route and provided little snippets of info about the places we passed through and by along the way. I enjoyed the company of them all.
Peter, Worcestershire, UKI always look at Skedaddle first when I look for a biking holiday.
I always say that Skedaddles service excellent – hence I keep using them on a regular basis. It was easy to call Skedaddle and discuss details of the trip, without feeling you were wasting there time. All the staff I spoke to were very helpful. Skedaddle have usually checked out the best eating spots/places, and it is easier than trying to find your own accommodation. Our tour leader was a excellent leader with excellent knowledge of the ride, and the support guide provided good support via the van. All the space on the van was well used. I would say that this holiday is good value for money, considering they arrange everything. ie guides/bikes if wanted/ accommodation/ eating places etc. It all makes the holiday run smoother! I always look at Skedaddle first when I look for a biking holiday.
Jim, London, UKGreat Tour Leader...
Our Tour Leader Matt did a great job. I felt that he really knew what he was doing. My favourite day was day 2 – the longest day. It was a real sense of achievement to finish the day.
Peter, Tyne and Wear, UKThe service provided I could not fault
I enjoyed the whole skedaddle weekend, the ride was described as moderate in mountain bike terms would be tough for the average rider. It was well planned in stages with loads of refreshment stops and breaks which helped to get everybody through. I was very impressed with the buffet lunch provided by the lads…...
Claire, Shropshire, UKAlways happy to help
Each day was different! Our tour leader was very thorough and experienced. He shepherded us all to the finish and was very knowledgeable and personable. The other guides were lovely lads. Chatty and approachable and provided great lunches – always happy to help.
Paul, Derbyshire, UKFANTASTIC.
First time on a MTB holiday, FANTASTIC. My favourite days were day 1 and day 3 , just about the right amount of cycling and fun! There was a very good selection of food and drink, plenty of fruit and protein bars. For the tour leader, nothing was to much trouble, the pace was good, and he had plenty of local knowledge. The same goes for the other guides, and they were always available with advice.
Trevor, Derbyshire, UKExcellent backup and service!
Service provided by the whole team was excellent friendly and helpful. My front brake rota was damaged following a downhill crash and it could not be fixed on the trail. A replacement bike was provided to allow completion of that days ride. The team sourced and fitted a new rota so that my bike was ready to ride the next day, excellent back up and service.