164 miles – Workington to Tynemouth
The Reivers Route gets it’s name from the gangs of marauders that used to roam the border between England and Scotland for several centuries. At 164 miles, it’s not a short route. More importantly, it passes through some of the most isolated and sparsely-populated parts of England.
In simple terms, you need to ensure you carry everything you need, as shops will be very few and very far between. You will want a gravel bike, a sturdy tourer or a hybrid with chunkier tyres for this route.
Much of this route is along forest tracks and similar. It will be bumpy in places, and muddy in parts.
Coast to coast cycle routes in the UK
The island of Greater Britain is long and reasonably narrow, which lends itself perfectly to a (usually) West-East coast to coast bike ride. Because of this, there are multiple coast to coast cycling routes to choose from. Coast to coast routes vary enormously, in terms of distance, hilliness of the terrain, and how much of the route is traffic-free, versus on-road.
This is a far more challenging route that either the C2C or Hadrian’s Cycleway, purely because of the route surface. At the same time, it is also significantly less hilly than the C2C.
Possibly the biggest challenge is that it passes though far less populated areas and it is essential that you are self-sufficient.
It’s a more challenging route than the C2C, and you will want a gravel or mountain bike (though there’s plenty of cycling on tarred roads). A study hybrid, or a touring bike will be fine, too.
Points of Interest
Unspoilt Northumberland, Hadrian’s Wall nearby, plus the delights of Newcastle.
This route runs between Workington and Newcastle. You can always consider doing it as a loop with the C2C route.
Alternatively, you can get between Whitehaven and Newcastle by train.
If you’re planning on taking the train, do read my Bikes On Trains guide first – it will help ensure a smoother journey, and might even save you money!
Other Coast To Coast Routes
What the Reivers Route looks like
Weather forecast for the Reivers Route
Because of the length of the route, there are multiple forecasts. Clicking each forecast will open it in a new window, in a larger format.
Preparing for the Reivers Route
Once you have a clear idea of over how many days you plan to cycle the Reivers Route, you can work out what your expected daily mileage will be. Just remember that off-road miles take more effort than cycling on smooth tar, and adjust your training accordingly.
Though less hilly than the C2C, the Reivers Route still has a fair bit of climbing, and the best way to prepare for that is to cycle up as many hills as possible. Ideally, on a fully-laden bike!