Wharncliffe and Grenocide "Greno" Woods
Humpday Wednesday and I was looking for somewhere to ride at the weekend. I started to look at few websites for a route in the peaks, or somewhere within a 2hr drive of my native fenland home.
So I asked the guys where they wanted to go, they hit me with the standard reply of "I don't mind." My brother pipes up and said no to peaks. He's put on some weight and wouldn't keep up. I fancied heading somewhere new. Thinking back to my uni days I remembered riding at Wharncliffe woods on a trip where I just jumped in a van and followed my mates down, steep, woodland tracks before smashing some beers down the pub. The memory is a general blur of beer and good times... So I pulled up google to do a bit of research and generally the information was pretty rubbish. So I hope to rectify the situation and help any of you that fancy riding there.
From the top car park, (Postcode S35 8RS, For your sat nav) there are two lots of trails. See the map below.
I'll start with Grenoside woods. Subsequently, if you search this in google you can find some information here. But as I'd never heard of it, it didn’t help me. From the car park you cross the main road and go over an anti-vehicle thingy and ride up a small hill to the top of the first track. If you turn left (Up the hill) the next track heads off on your right and are signposted.
The trails are good fun with flowing jumps and berms heading down the hill. These are similar in difficulty to many trail center lines. Man made jumps which are all rollable or with chicken lines, my only issue was when I couldn't decide whether to pump or double a jump and got the timing a bit wrong... Our favorite was the steel city line of Steve Peat fame. Below is a top to bottom, helmet cam video.
After spending the morning in "Greno" woods as it was called we headed back to the car park for lunch. To find the trails in Wharncliffe woods I asked a local and was given the directions of down there, go right, go right again and they’ll be on your left..... So we kitted up again and headed out. We rolled down the hill and took the first right. Someway down the trail, we came across a bit of single track going right, I had vague memories of going down there before, so I went for it. Some gloop mixed with rock gardens later and more than a few dabs, I genuinely think this might have been the toughest section of singletrack xc I have ever ridden. We emerge onto a fire road and headed right. We passed another local who confirmed, "Yeah just go down there mate and there on your left."
The first track we came upon was awesome, a rocky shoot mellows out to criss-cross a path, (which we used to push back up). Rock jumps (Roll-able) are littered down the hillside. Multiple paths split just before a medium sized drop on the left, heading into a steeper section with various lines to various rock jumps. Here we spent a while trying each of the different lines and jumps. The pine littered floor was perfect for sliding the back end out and just having fun.
An hour or so later we find our way back to the top. Heading a bit further down the fire road we arrived on. I followed general tyre tracks before coming across a couple of lads on big bikes. Perhaps the 3rd run on the left, but there were so many lines I'm not too sure. The lads tell me this is the best run here so we have to gave it a go.
Immediately the difficulty is a step up from before. Each section is within my ability but I take it real easy and look at each bit in turn before committing. About halfway down my mate "Cheval Rouge" takes to the front before immediately going over the bars on a rocky entry to a turn. Initially, he looks like he's got away with it but no, somehow on he's taken a large chunk out of his leg just below his knee pads.
Some first aid later and we slowly make our way to the bottom. First passing through a tough rock garden before some loose turns and a straight shoot onto the fire road. limping back to the car park as light is fading and bodies are injured and tired from a full on day of riding.
In many ways, I'm glad to have cut Wharncliffe site a bit short. It leaves me with a new playground to explore within my day trip radius giving me "I have unfinished business" to follow up on. Next time I think I will arrange to meet up with a couple of locals to show me around. Maybe Steve Peats will be available?...
Greno woods- http://www.ridesheffield.org.uk/projects/greno-woods/