Salisbury plain

Commuting, Day rides, Audax, Incidents, etc.
roberts8
Posts: 265
Joined: 20 May 2011, 9:14pm
Location: Surrey

Salisbury plain

Postby roberts8 » 22 Jan 2019, 3:39pm

Just ordered the OS map and plan to spend a few days touring the area. Looking for quiet roads and great views in the summer. Generally looking for 40 to 50 mile days and B and B in the early summer, any local knowledge appreciated.

whoof
Posts: 1950
Joined: 29 Apr 2014, 2:13pm

Re: Salisbury plain

Postby whoof » 22 Jan 2019, 3:56pm

The Wylie Valley (NCN 24) that runs West of Salisbury is very nice. As is the NCN 45 which follows the Avon north of Salisbury. Salisbury itself can very busy with traffic.

If you mean the plain itself there are various military roads and byways you need to check that the army aren't firing (can be done online or they put up red flags).

https://www.gov.uk/guidance/public-acce ... bury-plain

Old Sarum is worth a visit.
https://www.english-heritage.org.uk/vis ... old-sarum/

Possibly a loop to Caen Hill Locks
https://canalrivertrust.org.uk/places-t ... hill-locks

and Avebury

https://www.nationaltrust.org.uk/avebury
or Bath via Two Tunnels
https://visitbath.co.uk/listings/single ... -greenway/

mnichols
Posts: 1449
Joined: 22 Apr 2013, 4:29pm

Re: Salisbury plain

Postby mnichols » 22 Jan 2019, 4:17pm

whoof wrote:The Wylie Valley (NCN 24) that runs West of Salisbury is very nice


I'm lucky enough to live in the Wylye Valley, in fact the river runs past my front door, but so far not through it.

I'm biased, but I moved here after cycling through it many times and thinking it was beautiful.

I'd recommend a loop through Stourhead, Shearwater and Longleat. Longleat is on my lunchtime loop and I'm always amazed that I'm allowed to cycle through it for free, because if you turn up in a car it's very expensive. You can even cycle threwhen it's shut like it is now, and when they have events on

Phil Fouracre
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Joined: 12 Jan 2013, 12:16pm
Location: Deepest Somerset

Re: Salisbury plain

Postby Phil Fouracre » 22 Jan 2019, 6:00pm

Perhaps they want to get rid of cyclists? I assume not the bit with the cats in! :-)
Never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity

rjb
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Joined: 11 Jan 2007, 10:25am
Location: Somerset (originally 60/70's Plymouth)

Re: Salisbury plain

Postby rjb » 22 Jan 2019, 7:37pm

mnichols wrote:
whoof wrote:The Wylie Valley (NCN 24) that runs West of Salisbury is very nice


I'm lucky enough to live in the Wylye Valley, in fact the river runs past my front door, but so far not through it.

I'm biased, but I moved here after cycling through it many times and thinking it was beautiful.

I'd recommend a loop through Stourhead, Shearwater and Longleat. Longleat is on my lunchtime loop and I'm always amazed that I'm allowed to cycle through it for free, because if you turn up in a car it's very expensive. You can even cycle threwhen it's shut like it is now, and when they have events on


I had a day ride from Bridgwater, got lost in Longleat as the cycle route signs were not that visible. Ended up in the traffic queue for the lion enclosure :shock: but made it home in one piece.

If you like climbing try a loop that takes in gold hill in Shaftesbury and zig zag hill up to cranborne chase. Its a mini alp d'huez with amazing views from the top.
At the last count:- Focus Variado, Peugeot 531 pro, Dawes Discovery Tandem, Dawes Kingpin, Raleigh 20, Falcon K2 MTB dropped bar tourer, Longstaff trike conversion on a Falcon corsa. :D

Bmblbzzz
Posts: 2919
Joined: 18 May 2012, 7:56pm
Location: From here to there.

Re: Salisbury plain

Postby Bmblbzzz » 23 Jan 2019, 9:14am

Another vote for the Wylye and Avon valleys. The "lost village" of Imber is also worth a visit if you pick the one or two weekends a year when the army aren't training there (generally August bank holiday, I think) -- be sure to go in the medieval church if you get the chance.

whoof
Posts: 1950
Joined: 29 Apr 2014, 2:13pm

Re: Salisbury plain

Postby whoof » 23 Jan 2019, 11:30am

Bmblbzzz wrote:Another vote for the Wylye and Avon valleys. The "lost village" of Imber is also worth a visit if you pick the one or two weekends a year when the army aren't training there (generally August bank holiday, I think) -- be sure to go in the medieval church if you get the chance.


CTC Bristol do an annual ride to Imber.

althebike
Posts: 242
Joined: 10 May 2018, 12:58pm

Re: Salisbury plain

Postby althebike » 23 Jan 2019, 11:51am

I passed through a military exercise the year before last. It was spectacular, the light was fading, lots of flares went up and I was buzzed a few times by helicopters, I guess they were making sure I was not part of the exercise. Certainly one of my highlights of the year.

mnichols
Posts: 1449
Joined: 22 Apr 2013, 4:29pm

Re: Salisbury plain

Postby mnichols » 23 Jan 2019, 5:28pm

Bmblbzzz wrote:Another vote for the Wylye and Avon valleys. The "lost village" of Imber is also worth a visit if you pick the one or two weekends a year when the army aren't training there (generally August bank holiday, I think) -- be sure to go in the medieval church if you get the chance.


I think Imber is only open 1 day a year, might be 2 now, but you can ride over the plain when they aren't training

mnichols
Posts: 1449
Joined: 22 Apr 2013, 4:29pm

Re: Salisbury plain

Postby mnichols » 23 Jan 2019, 5:30pm

Phil Fouracre wrote:Perhaps they want to get rid of cyclists? I assume not the bit with the cats in! :-)


There are two national cycle routes through Longleat, you do go alongside the lion enclosure but ive never seen one. You do get to see a lot of the animals if you know where to look
Last edited by mnichols on 23 Jan 2019, 9:00pm, edited 1 time in total.

roberts8
Posts: 265
Joined: 20 May 2011, 9:14pm
Location: Surrey

Re: Salisbury plain

Postby roberts8 » 23 Jan 2019, 7:58pm

The map has arrived and your routes and thoughts look good. Sitting down with a beer planning a route that is not big by any means but it is fun. The few days will involve stopping and painting so I do appreciate your input.

mnichols
Posts: 1449
Joined: 22 Apr 2013, 4:29pm

Re: Salisbury plain

Postby mnichols » 23 Jan 2019, 8:59pm

roberts8 wrote:The map has arrived and your routes and thoughts look good. Sitting down with a beer planning a route that is not big by any means but it is fun. The few days will involve stopping and painting so I do appreciate your input.

Hope you share the paintings

basingstoke123
Posts: 145
Joined: 13 Feb 2008, 10:05pm

Re: Salisbury plain

Postby basingstoke123 » 24 Jan 2019, 12:10am

I realise that this is not quite Salisbury Plain, but slightly east (and north of Andover).

We all know that the Roman's built nice straight roads. Not always! Here is a half circle Roman road, 4 miles long, Chute Causeway. Once you get up there, the road is flat. In the middle are some step descents - ideal for ambushes.

https://www.google.co.uk/maps/dir/51.32 ... e0!5m1!1e4

I find this area fascinating, even if no one else does.

captain offensive
Posts: 140
Joined: 22 Oct 2014, 8:36am

Re: Salisbury plain

Postby captain offensive » 28 Jan 2019, 8:40pm

I grew up around the plain though not lived there for many years. If you can get a weekend when the ranges are open (they normally open at Easter and a few days in August) then you're in for a treat.

The Western plain (Warminster side) is the infantry ranges and if you can get up to Imber across the range roads it will be great riding (I've ridden across the plains as a teenager, but always whilst hiding as they weren't open at the time!).

The eastern plain (Larkhill) side is the artillery ranges. It doesn't have the old closed roads in the same way as the Western ranges and I don't think it therefore gets opened in the same way. As such you can ride the roads any time of year but you don't get such a good feel for the plain. Saying that there are a bunch of newer tank roads built in the 90s (I worked on the archaeological mitigation for a lot of them which was great). If you ever can get on them you'd be out in the wild.

If you can get onto the plain then heading across from Gore Cross through Imber and then to either Warminster or Heytesbury will show you the best of the plain.

If you go when it's closed the road between Knook, Chitterne, and Tilshead gives you the next best flavour.

As above, just to the south of the plain but the Wylye valley is beautiful. Also around the upper Wylye valley (the Deverills) is also great (that's where I'm actually from) and the northern extent between Westbury (you follow the valley but could climb up to the horse and drop back down into Bratton if you're after a climb) across the Devizes is good also.

captain offensive
Posts: 140
Joined: 22 Oct 2014, 8:36am

Re: Salisbury plain

Postby captain offensive » 28 Jan 2019, 9:09pm

And a follow up having had a play on cycle.travel...

If you manage to find a time when the plain is open I've taken the liberty of suggesting a possible two dayer (based on your c50 mile a day comment) starting and finishing at Westbury (well it has a station). Head around the north edge (starting with a ride up onto the White Horse) and then into Devizes (lovely market town) and then back to cut across the plain (I dont know what the off road bit south of Upavon is like - you might be better on the road through Upavon - which is also quite pretty) then dropping down the Avon valley through Amesbury (diversion to Stonehenge if you fancy) and into Salisbury going past Old Sarum. Then day two has you following the Wylye valley up to Sutton Veny (where I went to school) and then cut across to Heytesbury, Knook, and along the open roads to Chitterne and Tilshead before following the main road (though don't think it would be too busy) up to Gore Cross. From there, if you can you can follow the old road across the Plain proper, into Imber (which is one of the most beatiful and eerie places in the UK), across to Warminster and then back to Westbury.

https://cycle.travel/map/journey/88064

Well its a starter anyway! :-)

Looking forward to hearing how you get on. CO