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newbee where to ride?
#1
Hi, having just got my first bike i was looking for somewhere with mixed terrain to try it out and get used to the whole mtb thing, nothing too challenging just somewhere to get out and play near larkfield? Thanks in advance!
Regard Lee
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#2
"chunk" Wrote:Hi, having just got my first bike i was looking for somewhere with mixed terrain to try it out and get used to the whole mtb thing, nothing too challenging just somewhere to get out and play near larkfield? Thanks in advance!
Regard Lee

Mereworth - riding distance from Larkfield. Its a bit of a maze and can get really muddy in places, but for getting your fitness up its perfect.

Map
http://opencyclemap.org/?zoom=13&lat=51....&layers=B0

My Old Info Thread
http://www.sketchymtb.co.uk/Blah.pl?m-1240082931/
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#3
thank you
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#4
excuse my ignorance but what paths are you allowed to ride on! footpaths, bridlepaths etc as i have no idea
cheers
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#5
"chunk" Wrote:excuse my ignorance but what paths are you allowed to ride on! footpaths, bridlepaths etc as i have no idea
cheers

the only trails you aren't allowed to ride are Public Footpaths. Bridleways are fair game though you should give way to walkers and horses. The secret is to be courteous and say hello and thankyou. and smile.
At Mereworth there is very little you need to avoid.  Smile

Other local riding can be found at Bluebell Hill and Oldbury.

Keep your eye on the forum for an organised ride. by far the best way to get out see what about.

How is the bike?
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#6
thanks for that! yea the bike is mint well pleased with it trying to pump the suspension up for a fat boy! thank god for the internet!!!
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#7
"chunk" Wrote:excuse my ignorance but what paths are you allowed to ride on! footpaths, bridlepaths etc as i have no idea
cheers
Officially you are allowed to ride Bridleways and Byways, footpaths should only be ridden "officially" if they specifically grant you permission as shared paths (like the paths around Leybourne Lakes). In practice some can be ridden without objection (but not legally) if you give way to any walkers you come across.
You dont say where you are in Larkfield but you have access to Bluebell hill via Alyesford and to the North Downs Way via Snodland  
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#8
Technically only bridleways, permissive footpath, national trails & cycle paths if my knowledge of the Rights of Way act hold true (ish).  In fairness though most things are fair game as long you respect where you are, dont damage property, go riding through peoples flower beds etc.  Give way/slow down for walkers and horses and say hello to people as you pass.

If you do get told that your not supposed to be riding somewhere by a landowner then your best bet is to do as your told and figure out another way round.  Theres some more infomation from another site in PART 1 and PART 2.

As for where to ride from Larkfield you have a whole host of oppertunities from the the above mentioned Mereworth, North Pole Woods and Barming, Kings Hill, Wateringbury, the North Downs Way along Snodland, Leybourne Lakes, Bluebell Hill, the river to Medway or back towards Farleigh the list just goes on as we are quite spoilt in having an abundance of natural riding on our doorsteps here.

If you get hold of Ordnance Survey (OS) map 148 Maidstone & Medway Towns (£7 pounds from Smiths or Waterstones for a paper one £14 for the waterproof version which I use) fold it out on the table, find where you are and look for areas to ride.  Base this on footpaths etc that you already know in your area and try to link a few of them up together to form a loop.  To start with it will be a bit hit and miss as you find your way around however this will improve your local knowledge and you never know when you will come across and unknown gem of a trail Wink

Do you have a gps device like a Gramin for the bike?  Alternatively do you have a smart/I phone?  If so then get yourself an app called Endomondo which will track your route as you go and upload it to their site.  This will show you exactly where you have been on a google earth map along with how long it took and speed etc.  

You can the export this as a .gpx file to other sites such as <!-- w --><a class="postlink" href="http://www.justgoride.co.uk">www.justgoride.co.uk</a><!-- w --> or WHERES THE PATH so you can see the route overlaid on an OS map so you can check out what else is in that area or how well the route flowed or could be extended.  I have many variations to the routes I ride which gives you the option to keep things fresh.

To get yourself started you can use either of the above sites to plan routes out and hoave a good look around the local area to see whats about.  Its well worth having a paper map too IMHO. Where abouts in Larkfield are you roughly, I could knock up a couple of short loops for you to loko at if you like?  Also are you free wednesday evening as there is normally a local ride around Bluebell Hill.  Its a nice friendly group and newcomers are always welcome.  You will need lights though as it gets dark early now.  If you haven t got any and bribe with haribo ask nicely you maybe able to borrow some.

Check out HERE for more details on that and keep on eye on the rides folder for details for wednesday.

HTH and happy trails Smile
Ride the Spiral to the end
It takes us to where no ones been
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#9
Thanks very much for the info i live up gighill and would very much like a loop if you can recommend for me! got 3 kids so loads of haribo!! i have a bike and that it but can get other bits i need if you can help me out with what else i need to buy
Thanks Lee
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#10
Just downloaded that iPhone app as well cheers
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