This route navigates the rural lanes of Surrey and West Sussex, taking you far from the hoards of weekend cyclists. Mile upon mile of hedgerows, narrow lanes and woodland provide a rewarding and accessible loop.
There’s a sting in the tail with the classic Surrey climbs of Combe Lane and Crocknorth Road, but you can avoid these if you’re cooked by that stage!
All metrics in this article are approximate.
Our favourite part of this ride is the steep, narrow climb of Black Down, south of Haslemere. This short, sharp rise in the still solitude of the forest is the perfect antidote to the busier areas of the Surrey Hills.
1. Dorking to Ellen’s Green – escaping the madness: 0-42 km
From Dorking, the route heads south with Box Hill behind you, on the tiny farm track of Tilehurst Lane. The route traces the rolling countryside and villages of Leigh, Charnwood and Rusper. After crossing the A24, the route turns off the B2126 and follows a stream along the magical tiny forest road of Weare Street.
2. Ellen’s Green to Bramley – Sussex wilderness: 42-98 km
After a very short stretch on the B2128, the route cuts westward on quiet roads through Loxwood, Ifold, Balls Cross and Ebernoe. There’s no major defining feature to this stretch, other than the therapeutic solitude of rural lanes.
Soon you’re at the furthest point from the start of the ride, in the picture postcard village of Lurgeshall. The Noah’s Ark Inn is worth returning to for a meal, when not in lycra!
After Dial Green, the short, sharp climb to Black Down provides some welcome variety, before heading north through Wormley, Hambledon, Hydestile and Busbridge, before dropping down to Bramley.
3. Bramley to Dorking – the climbing finale: 98 – 121 km
The A281 at Bramley marks your return towards the Surrey Hills area. After Wonersh, a climb takes you to the tucked-away sleepy village of Blackheath.
After Chilworth and Albury, you could follow the busy A25 back down to Dorking. But why not take the quieter, more charming and leg-busting rollercoaster of Combe Lane, down Green Dene and finishing you off up Crocknorth Road.
Combe Lane gets steeper as you climb, with only momentary respite before hitting the steepest section on the off-camber hairpin. You’ll struggle to get this done out of the saddle, especially if it’s wet – you’ll need all your weight over the rear wheel! The last gasp climb up Crocknorth rises steeply under a high bridge, with a killer 13% section. Finally, roll down Ranmore Road to finish off your ride.
32km: Instead of turning off at Weare Street, carry on along the B2126 for a few hundred metres to Village Greens Farm Shop, a great place for a coffee and snack. When you’re refuelled, head back down the road to Weare Street.
59km: Take a short detour into the village of Kirdford to refuel at Kirdford Village Stores. They have a café, as well as a good selection of food and drink in the shop.
97km: Bramley has a number of shops for provisions, including the Esso garage and Budgens on the main crossroads. For a sit-down snack and coffee, try the Bramley Cafe (not open on Sundays).
Our team lives in the Surrey Hills area, so don’t have firsthand accommodation suggestions. However, being locals, we have visited quite a few of the hotels for reasons ranging from using sports facilities to visiting for afternoon tea.
Check out our ultimate guide to cycling the Surrey Hills for full details.
Read our tips for cycling the Isle of Wight, before you set out. Though it’s a different part of the UK, they are very relevant to cycling in Surrey
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Don’t miss our other ride guides on the Surrey Hills and southeast of England: see the related rides section above and articles below.
Check out our ultimate guide to cycling the Surrey Hills.
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