Forum home Mountain biking forum Routes, rides and holidays MTB rides

Hitchin, Hertfordshire - regular Sunday Ride

johnhighfieldjohnhighfield Posts: 173
edited February 2016 in MTB rides
We are a group of mountain bike enthusiasts with a range of ages & abilities, male and female, who get out on a Sunday morning at 8.30am for a 2.5 to 3 hour ride on the surrounding off-road tracks. We generally ride in the area between Luton, Stotfold, Stevenage, Walkern and Whitwell and thereabouts.

We meet up outside the Pine Hills Hospital, Benslow lane, Hitchin and most of us cycle there although there is free parking available. This is just behind Hitchin railway station.

We are not any formal group but would expect all those who ride with us to wear a cycle helmet, carry enough fluid for the ride (approx 1 litre per hr), and have a spare inner tube and the tools to change it on a ride.

In the summer we also try and get out for some evening rides – but these tend to be arranged on an ad-hoc basis.

If you are new to mountain biking, or returning, we will have a newbies ride on the last Sunday of every month which will be a bit slower and a shorter distance.

Some useful links:
‘Hitchin are you there…….’ Original thread by Pastasauce with our posts on.

SillyGrin – Ride in Beds & North Hertfordshire

OTT Mountainbiking – Ride out from Harpenden & other starting points.

Post on this thread if you are going to join us so we know to expect you or send me a PM if you have any questions.



  • Unbelievable!

    We've been out every Sunday for 18 months+ and managed to be out after OR before the rain...then all of a sudden several Sundays are hit with rain in a short period of time....

    This is, however, the first time no one has been out! The prospect of riding in torrential rain is not my idea of fun - particularly in a period of drought.
    Hopefully next Sunday the weather will return to normal and we'll be out as usual.

    8.30am outside Pine Hills Hospital, Benslow Lane Hitchin.

  • evo3benevo3ben Posts: 552
    I did wonder if you managed to get out yesterday. I was racing near Chelmsford and it was constant rain till 2pm. Conditions were really bad, muddy, flooded etc which is the same for everywhere i suppose.
    Managed 20th this time and considering conditions and the fact that my brake pads wore down to the metal half way through lap 3 (4 lap race) it made thinks a little twitchy lol.

    Hoping the weather will be bearable next sunday as i am hoping to be out with you all 8)
  • Jamieg285Jamieg285 Posts: 98
    I decided to brave the weather late Sunday morning and went out for an hour. Once I got over the first, "what the hell am I doing" 10-15mins, I quite enjoyed it. Everywhere was flooded or saturated with plenty of slipping and sliding. Made the route pretty interesting.

    Anyone using Strava yet? I used it for the first time this ride and have added a few segments up. Plenty of room for improvement!! I think you need to be registered/logged in to see them, but you can find this and future rides at
  • johnhighfieldjohnhighfield Posts: 173
    Had a great ride this morning, the rain having eased off for a day or so, which saw 5 of us out - with 2 of our usual number joining the roadie fraternity for their ride.

    We did one of our newer rides - which is still being perfected - out through Gravely; on to Weston; down towards Luffenhall; over to the Back Lane Track (Roman Road) around Ardely; & back through Walkern; skirting Stevenage; & back up towards Walkern & home. 23mi on my garmin which was pretty good going given the slipperyness of some of the tracks; the little rivers running down the tracks & the deep puddles. Although it wasn't too bad considering its been raining for the best part of 2 weeks.

    Hopefully next week we might be back to some decent weather!

    8.30am outside Pine Hills Hospital, Benslow lane, Hitchin - if anyone is interested in joining us.

  • johnhighfieldjohnhighfield Posts: 173
    Torrential rain - what torrential rain??

    We got out last Sunday in a break in the weather & 5 of us had a good ride. It was a bit slippery & we went on one of Mark's famous rides down to Whitwell & back up through Langley - about 20mi all in.

    Al (Alcooker) & myself also went out on Wednesday evening - now its nice & light - and did a 15mi loop up through Ickleford, Arlsey, Stotfold & back via the ducks at Radwell & Letchworth's Greenway. I also went out, solo, on Friday evening for a quick circuit over towards Luffenhall & got lost in some terrific countryside before emerging in Walkern & ending up with a 21mi ride. On checking my route on the Garmin I seemed to do a fig of 8 without realising it - some sense of direction I have!!

    The weather for this Sunday looks cloudy - but dry - so we should be out in force again.

    8.30am outside the Pine Hills Hospital in Benslow Lane Hitchin for a 2-3 hour ride - 20mi ish. All Welcome!

  • johnhighfieldjohnhighfield Posts: 173
    6 out this morning including the returning Steve after a year or so absence - on his new 29er.

    Although it was 'cloudy' as forcast the cloud was more like mist - or very low cloud - as there was a persistent mizzle which made for a bit of a miserable outing. We did a shortened ride & got in about 18mi going over towards Luffenhall & back via Halls Green & on to Gravely.

    The forecast is good for the coming week so some evening rides shoud be possible as well as a good ride next Sunday. I will be on the C2C ride - so hopefully the weather up north is as good as down south in Hitchin!

  • johnhighfieldjohnhighfield Posts: 173
    Looking to be out tomorrow night (Tues 22 May) leaving Letchworth @ 6.30pm. I have text the usual suspects but please post I you would like to join us.

    Heading out through Gravely & on towatds Weston & on.....

  • johnhighfieldjohnhighfield Posts: 173
    Had a good evening ride with the sun out and a temp of about 24c with Paul & Stuart joining us. It was good to see them again after an absence from the group.

    Did about 18mi over towards Lufferhall / Walkern looking to develop the Walkern loop by finding a new track - which we actually missed (and it wasn't the 'Private' road either). I've checked the route from the Garmin upload onto my digital map so should find it next time.

    Aiming to be out again on Thursday (24th May) 6.30/7.00 start - so give us a shout if your in.

  • johnhighfieldjohnhighfield Posts: 173
    Hi - Just recovering from doing the C2C (Coast to Coast) ride over Sat & Sun in the blistering heat and a 13mph headwind all the way. 75mi in 9 hours on Sat & 65mi in 8 on Sunday going up the biggest hills I have seen over the Pennines!

    It was like going up the big hill coming out of Barton-le-Clay but 10 times as long & going up 10 times as high. I think Hertfordshire is probably hilly enough for me with its 'baby' hills.....

    Hopefuly there should be some mid-week riding this week otherwise - its the regular Sunday ride - 8.30am outside the Pine Hills Hospital, Hitchin.

    See u there - John
  • johnhighfieldjohnhighfield Posts: 173
    Planning a ride tomorrow evening (Wed 29 May) starting at Hitchin or Letchworth depending on who is coming & starting at 6.30/6.45pm. Subject to it not raining as a shower is forecast for tomorrow eve.....

    I will text around usual suspects - but if your not on my list PM me here for details of the start time & location.

  • Great ride out this morning despite the persistent rain which now seems to be a feature every second Sunday!

    Many of the singletracks are now nearly overgrown & meeting in the middle and the narrow tracks were now little streams...

    However we did one of our usual loops: Ickleford, Pirton. Telegraph Hill, Putteridgebury, Offley, Chalk Hill & back to Hitchin which was about 23mi.

    If the weather picks up we'll start doing some evening rides - otherwise its every Sunday @ 8.30 outside Pine Hills Hospital (Benslow Lane) Htchin for about a 2-3 hr / 20-25 mile ride around the local tracks.

    All Welcome - John
  • Had 7 out last Sunday - dry & sunny but still very squelchy under wheel!

    Tomorrow looks very promising - dry & sunny weather forecast and its now much drier on the tarcks - so we should have a good turn-out.

    8.30am outside Pine Hills Hospital, Benslow Lane Hitchin, for a 2-3 hour jaunt around the local tracks.

    All welcome - John
  • Great ride out this morning with some clouds & sunshine - BUT NO rain!!

    8 of us out & we did a loop to Weston Hills, on to Luffenhall & Walkern & back through Gravely to Hitchin which was about 23mi (more for those who rode further to the start) in about 2.5hrs.

    Congrats go out to 2 of our regular riders last year - Tom & Hannah on the birth of their baby boy Max Robert @ 6lb 8oz. We all wish you well!!

    If the weather stays good we should be able to do an evening ride on Wednesday - probably starting at Gravely at about 6.30pm. All welcome -sStay posted for confirmation.

  • All looking good for an evening ride tomorrow Wed 25th July @ 6.30pm From Gravely.

    Junction of Gravely Lane & the B197. Give us a shout if you would like to join us!

  • Hi,

    I'm fairly new to the area, and to mountain biking and was hoping to join you guys for a newbie ride this Sunday if you're heading out.

    Please let me know if that's ok.

  • Hi Nathan

    I have responded to your PM - You are most welcome!!

  • Looking to be out riding Wednesday Evening (1st August) if anyone else is up for it. Leaving Letchworth to meet up in Gravely at 6.30pm at the junction of the High Street (B197) & Gravely lane.

    Weather permitting - should be out for a few hours going over towards Weston / Walkern.

    Text or PM me if your coming......

  • Great Ride out this Sunday with nice dry weather again (appart from a bit of v light drizzle). This is the second dry Sunday now - which is unusual for this year - and the tracks are dry and fast.

    No puddles - no mud - what a pleasure! But some extremely overgrown tracks now with the very wet weather that we have had....

    Did 26mi last week & 27mi this with a loop from Hitchin through Gt Offley; through Putteridgebury; on to Cockenhoe; Breachwood Grn; Whitwell and up through Langley. We had 4 out today as many are on holiday; 6 last week and now have a group of about 32 occasional riders! Some being more occassional than others...

    If you are around Sunday mornings feeks. l free to join us. We ride from Pine Hills Hospital, Benslow Lane in Hitchin aqt 8.30am for 2.3 to 3 hours doing about 20-25mi depending on the conditions around the local tracks.

    If you want any further info PM me.

  • I have just recently registered to the site - see my newbie post in MTB for beginners. I basically go MTB'ing on my own now, but used to join up with a friend and cycle around CMK and the canal - some 30 odd miles which used to almost kill me, but I felt great for doing it. But now we have now gone our separate ways. I am wanting to meet new people that go MTB'ing again and properly enjoy this hobby.

    Your gatherings sounds great and looks like you are all having fun which I would like to be apart off. I am not a off road expert, and I am not into (yet) jumping off rocks, ladders i think you call them, but any rugged terrain is all good. I got a decent-ish hardtail.

    I live in between Bedford/MK/Northampton and I used to live in Harpenden until 5 and a half years ago. Hitchin just just down the road for me. The next couple of Sundays are busy for me, TruckFest this w/e and next Ferrari Racing Days at Silverstone.

  • Hi you are welcome to join us.

    Nothing we do is technical & the few hills we have in the area are pretty moderate - by all standards.

    There is free uncontrolled residential parking adjacent to where we meet at the opening to Pine Hills Hospital in Benslow lane, Hitchin. and Hitchin station (on line to Kings Cross) is just around the corner.

    We are put every Sunday throught the year (except possibly if its tipping down) so hopefully will see you some time in the future.

    Post here of send me a PM when you intend joining us so we can be sure to meet you.

  • Hi you are welcome to join us.

    Nothing we do is technical & the few hills we have in the area are pretty moderate - by all standards.

    There is free uncontrolled residential parking adjacent to where we meet at the opening to Pine Hills Hospital in Benslow lane, Hitchin. and Hitchin station (on line to Kings Cross) is just around the corner.

    We are put every Sunday throught the year (except possibly if its tipping down) so hopefully will see you some time in the future.

    Post here of send me a PM when you intend joining us so we can be sure to meet you.


    Hi John, thank you. Hope to meet you soon. I'll be in touch.
  • We've had a couple of great Sunday rides recently with sunny weather and fast tracks!

    All looks good for tomorrow morning with dry cool weather forecast and the rain kicking in at about midday (BBC forecast) - when we will be all done...

    Considering a new ride tomorrow so if you are up for a bit of a mystery tour come & join us.

    Normally do 20-25 mi & meet at 8.30am outside Pine Hills Hospital in Benslow Lane Hitchin. There is unrestricted parking & Hitchin station is nearby.

  • Good ride out this morning - a mystery tour - all done & back before the rain - as planned!

    Went for a new ride - beyond our normal riding area - up through Arlesey on to Henlow, Langford and round through Stotfold, round Letchworth's Greenway & Back to Hitchin.

    Made a few mistakes - but these will be worked on. This & our most recent rides are now listed on the 'cycle buddy' website & can be searched in the cycling logs under the postcode 'SG6'.

    Anyone interested in joining us: Every Sunday @ 8.30am outside Pine Hills Hospital, Benslow lane, Hitchin.

  • Hi Bobslop

    Thanks for the PM

    You are most welcome to join us......

    See you tomorrow @ 8.30 outside Pine Hills Hospital, Benslow Lane, Hitchin.

  • Good ride this morning with tracks nice & dry & dry but cool weather.

    Did a 25mi loop down through Kings Walden, Breachwood Green, Whitwell & up through Langley. The logged ride is on 'cycling buddy' ( and can be found by searching postcode SG6 and looking for rides by JohnC.

    We should be out again next Sunday leaving the Pine Hills Hospital, Benslow Lane, in Hitchin, at 8.30am. All welcome!

  • Ah here you are John :).... I'm up for riding this Sundaynif your around? Benslow at 8:30?
    Knebworth MTB Facebook Page -
  • Hi Sticky (pun intended)

    Yes we will be there! I dont know who will turn up but there is normally a core of 4/5. If you are driving there is a bay just along the road from the gates of the Pine Hills Hospital, Benslow Lane, Hitchin - its near Hitchin Station (for pedestrians) but by road is a bit more indirect.

    8.30am for 2.5/3 hrs

    I'll PM you some Mob nos for emergencies.

    See you Sunday - Hopefully - John
  • Nice to have you with us Sticky

    Hopefully you car was OK parked in the grounds of the Hospital - I would park it along the road in future.....

    For your inaugural ride we did one of our classic routes: Ickleford, Pirton, Wood lane, Telegraph Hill, down to the golf course at Streatley, around through Liley and up the Balk, on to Little Offley, Great Offley, down Chalk Hill, and back on to Hitchin. The route is posted on the 'Cycle Buddy' website & can probablt be found by searching the postcode 'SG6'. The web address is in a posting above.

    It was very misty out at times & the ground is getting very slippery again after the recent rain - However we got in about 24mi (fron my starting point).

    Hopefully we'll see you again next week with anyone else who is up for 2-3 hours of off road Singletrack local to Hitchin.

    All welcome - 8.30am outside the Pine Hills Hospital in Benslow Lane, Hitchin. There is a parking bay just along from the Hospital gates.

  • Registration for the Thetford Winter Series has now opened & gets filled up very quickly....

    4 or 5 of us should be doing the 2hr race so if you fancy giving it a go sign up and we will meet up & go together. The first one is on the Sunday 4th get training!

    The weather is looking good for this Sunday - fresh (6-8c) but sunny - so it should be a good ride.

    Join us if you are around - Outside Pine Hills Hospital, Benslow Lane Hitchin, for an 8.30am start. There is unrestricted parking along the road.

  • evo3benevo3ben Posts: 552
    Yes its that time again! wow doesnt time fly! I have entered the complete series and really looking forward to it. Hoping to be out with you this sunday, be good to catch up :)
Sign In or Register to comment.