|24 km/15 mi - Circular||301 m/987 ft||Easy|
|Train: Shanklin, or Car||Shanklin Station||Wroxall /Godshill/Newchurch|
Two thirds of this ride will be on the 'Squirrel Trail', which is well sign posted. There is a Spar Shop at Wroxall, and numerous cafés at Godshill.
1. Shanklin to Godshill
Starting from Shanklin Train Station car park, Exit from the station, via the steps in the right hand corner - as you face away from the station. From the bottom of the steps cross the road and head up the road leading to Haven Holiday Camp - following the signs for the Squirrel Trail for Wroxall. You actually ride on the pavement here and fork left before the holiday camp. Here you follow the Squirrel Trail. all the way to Wroxall.
This section is well surfaced cycle track which continues for 4 kilometres, until you reach Wroxall.
Leave the cycle track before it narrows and keep following the Squirrel Trail signs through Wroxall. I won't give you road names as the route is well sign-posted. But, ensure you turn right at the main road. Then turn left into Appuldurcombe Road. Follow the Squirrel Trail in to the field.
Still keeping to the Squirrel Trail, pass through Freemantle Gate and take a swooping downhill into Godshill, with only a small climb, past a few houses, on the way down.
2. Godshill to Alverstone
When you reach the main road at Godshill, take a left, and then almost immediately a right into an rough road leading to Moor Farm - still on the Squirrel Trail.
After Moor Farm you truly go off-road on to a sandy bridleway crossing the River Yar and then passing Budbridge Manor to our left until you reach the tarmac again.
At an old railway bridge, just after some houses, still following the Squirrel Trail, take a left, down a slope to another cycle track (Route 23). Turn right and keep to the cycle track crossing the main road at Horringford, via the Traffic lights, until you reach Alverstone, and finally leave the Squirrel Trail.
From now on, you will be truly navigating, as we have left the Squirrel Trail.
3. Alverstone to Borthwood
At Alverstone turn right on to the road and climb up hill past the NC17 Sign on our left, where you then take the 1st right up an unmade road to follow the NC42 upwards to the tarmac road, (Youngwoods Way).
Go directly across the road at Youngwoods Way, till you meet tarmac again at Alverstone Road.
Take a left on the road for 300 meters until you reach the entrance to Borthwood (National Trust).
Enter the wood, ignoring signs about not riding - this is a bridleway.
Keeping to this track but bearing left at the obvious fork, continue through the wood; until it reaches a small bridge and an open field.
4. Borthwood to America Woods
Leaving Borthwood, keep going straight ahead, across the field, keeping to the bridleway until you reach the main (busy) road.
Take a left here and continue past the Airport entrance, and over the bridge where you promptly turn right (with care), onto a bridleway at the white walled Scotchells Lodge, before the 30mph sign.
Continue on this bridleway through two gates until you reach a crossroads, where you take a right on the tarmac road 18a Ninham till you reach Ninham Farm. Keeping left, and past the Farmhouse, go through the gate on to the SS19 America Woods onto a rutted path running alongside a brook - until you reach the edge of America Wood.
After entering the wood, climb upwards an leftwards, keeping to the obvious track until you reach the stone house. Continue past the house, but not alongside it. YOU should be on the path that is 30 metres to the right of the house.
The path becomes narrow and undulating. Eventually you reach a small climb to the edge of the wood on to a very busy road.
5. America Woods to Shanklin
Take a left here, until you reach the sharp bend, where you turn left on to the unadopted road Upper Hyde Lane. You are now running parallel to the cycle track you used at the start.
Keep to the track until it starts to get close to the cycle track, where you will see an obvious gap in the hedgerow with white picket fencing. Re-join the Squirrel Trail back to our destination. If you miss the gap, continue into the Holiday Park and keep right until you find the park entrance.
This is an easy, mainly flat ride, mostly on good surfaces.
A significant portion of this ride keeps to the Squirrel Trail, which is a recognised bike trail. I've added two wooded sections to negotiate, which adds some swooping singletrack to the end of the ride. A portion of the ride is on the National Cycle route 23 which has a tarmac surface.
If you come by via the Wightlink Portsmouth - Ryde Catamaran, it is possible to bring your bike right through to Shanklin on the train.
- Ordnance Survey Map
- 1:25000 - Explorer OL29 - Isle of Wight
- 1:50000 - Landranger 196 - The Solent & Isle of Wight
Shanklin Train Station
Sat Nav: PO37 7AR
OSGB: SZ 580 818
You can bring your bike on the train from Ryde via Wightlink's Portsmouth - Ryde Catamaran route.
This is an easy ride passing many towns with plenty of shops and cafés. Escape routes are not necessary.