Caistor 8

Distance 30.1 miles (48.4km)
Grade Moderate to challenging
Ascent 1405ft (428m) approximately
Time 150 minutes
Start / Finish Caistor
Parking No official car park
Refreshments Heritage Centre in Caistor, The Settlement pub, The Salutation Inn and Dunn Deal Tearooms in Nettleton, Hall Farm Tearooms, South Kelsey, Blacksmith Arms in Rothwell

General Overview

Climb out of Horsemarket to Market Place in Caistor at the end of the ride

This ride has two distinctive qualities a flat ride and a hilly one, which means that although the ride is not a perfect figure of eight it is easy do one or the other depending on time or energy levels. The ride starts at Caistor and heads into the Lincolnshire Wolds passing through village with grand names like Rothwell, Cuxwold, Thorganby, Croxby Normanby le Wold and Nettleton. After descending into Nettleton the flatter section of the ride visits Moortown, North and South Kelsey before returning back to Caistor. The hills are typical of Lincolnshire Wold short but punchy and nothing that would tax an experienced cyclist.

The Route

  1. Starting from the car park (2-hour limit) in the Market Square ride along South Street to the A46 and with care cross to climb Whitegate Hill. This is a half a mile climb, fairly steep at first before easing off towards the top.
  1. Turn right onto the B1225 (Top Road) and take the first turning on the left to Rothwell. Here you have a long decent taking you down into and through Rothwell. You will pass the Blacksmith Arms which has been in existence since the 18th Century in one form or another.
  1. At the fork in the road turn left and climb the hill towards Cuxwold. The steep gradient is short lived and becomes a gentle climb before heading downhill into the village.
  1. At the sharp bend in the road turn right down a lane signposted to Beelsby and Thorganby. The lane is a single-track road but is often potholed and gritty, so care needs to be taken especially when descending at the beginning. The road soon kicks up for another short climb before it levels off.
  1. At the junction turn right again. Follow the road to the crossroads and here you can reduce the length of the ride by turning right and going straight to Croxby, missing out a visit to Thorganby. The main route carries straight on.

    The Lincolnshire Wolds after climbing out of Cuxwold.
  1. Descend down the hill building up speed for the locally called Heartbreak Hill. The climb takes through Claxby Plantation which offers shade in the summer and shelter from the wind at other times.

    Top of Heartbreak Hill
  1. Continue along the road to Thorganby.
  1. At the end of the descent into Thorganby take a sharp right hand turn to Croxby and follow the road. At Croxby you will find a short, but punchy climb to a T-junction.
  1. Turn left at the junction and join the undulating road to Thoresway. At the crossroads ride straight on and begin to climb. The climb is around 2 miles (3.2km) long and only offers a brief rest bite throughout. When you see the fork in the road turn right and continue until you reach the B1225 again.
  1. Turn right onto the B1225 and then take the first turning on the left to Normaby le Wold and Nettleton.
  1. Follow this road until you get to a T-junction. En-route you will have passed the radar station that is close to the highest point in Lincolnshire.
  1. At the T-junction turn right and drink in the views across the western side of West Lindsey. The road follows the cliff to Nettleton taking in the steep descent down Nettleton Hill.
  1. Ride through the village until you get to the A46, where you will turn left and then right to Moortown. You are just over half way around the route and The Dunn Deal or Salutation Inn offer refreshments if required.
  1. Continue on this road for 4.5 miles (7.25km) going straight across at the crossroad in Moortown and onto South Kelsey. Just before you get to South Kelsey is Hall Farm Tearooms.

    Winter sun at Moortown crossroads
  1. At South Kelsey turn right at the crossroads to head to North Kelsey. Follow the road for 2.5 miles (4km) and just after leaving North Kelsey turn right to Caistor.
  1. Follow the road all the way to Caistor as it gently climbs. The gradient slowly increases as you approach the town. There are two way to get back to the starting point, both include a climb of the same magnitude. The first way is to continue all the way up to the T-junction, turn right to climb Caistor Hill and then take the turning on the right after the pedestrian crossing. Or you can turn right onto Hersey Road, left on to Navigation Lane and left again onto Nettleton Road. Follow the road pass the Heritage Centre and climb up to the market square.

    Views from Nettleton Top