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Outdoor Activities

Haydon Bridge is the ideal centre for those who appreciate the outdoor life at any time of the year allowing you to enjoy scenery, relieving stress, finding peace in nature, enjoying life and relaxing.

Walkers can use the quiet paths with many walks directly from the village centre. See below for more walking information.

The two loops of the ‘John Martin Trail’ have attracted many walking groups and individuals following in the young Martin’s footsteps and seeing the magnificent views which so influenced this famous Victorian artist.

The Roman Wall is close by with its many linear and circular trails. kayak
There are nearby facilities for swimming outdoors, rock climbing, skiing and snowboarding in winter, pony trekking, cycling and mountain biking, golf, horse racing, running routes and clubs, canoeing and kayaking, angling in the lakes and rivers, sailing and windsurfing, diving, motor cycling on some of the best recommended routes in the UK, camping, caravanning, bird watching, painting, gliding and ballooning, wildlife photography and many other exciting opportunities.

You can even swing through the trees and zip wire down if you feel the urge.
Some of these activities are detailed here for you with links to more information.

Birdwatching

Haydon Bridge was the first sighting place of the bewick swan. The loughs of the Roman Wall area are famous for wintering birds, whooper swans, goldeneye, greylag and white fronted geese, wigeon, teal, lapwings, and tufted ducks. Grindon Lough can be seen from ‘The Stanegate’ road and Greenlee Lough from a hide built by the National Parks. Northumberland’s own bird the curlew is on the moorland with hen harriers, peregrine falcons, buzzards and, to the east, the red kites. Other locations can be found here at the following websites:
www.northumberlandnationalpark.org.uk
www.northernkites.org.uk

Cycling

The countryside around Haydon Bridge offers the chance for cyclists to explore the beautiful Northumberland countryside on quiet, traffic-free roads. The Northumberland National Park, the North Pennines Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, Hadrian's Wall and many other attractions are just a short ride away.

Cycle Rides Around Haydon Bridge is a leaflet featuring three routes exploring the countryside around the village, while for the more competitive rider our annual cyclo-sportive, the Haydon Hundred in early June is not to be missed.

Full details on cycling and leaflet download

Fishing

Langley Dam is a 14 acre lake set in beautiful countryside which lies approximately 3 miles south of Haydon Bridge. Stocked weekly with rainbow trout. Anglers who don’t hire a boat will need waders for the most part.
There is a new lodge with car park and toilet facilities and rods and tackle can be hired. In addition, the fishery lodge sells a limited amount of tackle.
Opening Hours: Daily.
Bookings: 01434 688846.
Location: Just south of Haydon Bridge on the A686.
Admission: Permits available.
Access: For wheelchairs.

Website: Langley Dam Fishery

Geocaching

For Geocaching fans there is an excellent multi-cache based on the six John Martin Heritage Trail information panels and starting at the 'Bridge' library.  Details 

This is ideal for introducing you and the children to both Martin and the countryside which inspired him.  Car or bicycle (some steep climbs) use is recommended or you could walk around 14 miles for this (and don't forget your GPS!)  A copy of the free John Martin Trail leaflet detailed below would be helpful.

There are several other fascinating and varied caches in great locations around Haydon Bridge for you to find. Check here

For full information for newcomers to the hobby, you will need to register for basic participation which is free from here

Be warned, Geocaching is possibly more addictive than Golf but much cheaper and more rewarding.

Go Ape

This is your opportunity for the excitement of swinging through the trees at the nearby Matfen Hall adventure park.
You can find full details and booking on their website at www.goape.co.uk

Haltwhistle Walking Festival & Challenge

The nearby town of Haltwhistle organises these events in May and October each year and are very popular. Haydon Bridge offers accommodation allowing easy access during these busy periods. Many walks are in our immediate area too and connections by bus and rail are available should you not wish to use a car.
Website www.haltwhistlewalkingfestival.org

Hexham Racecourse

The home of National Hunt racing in Northumberland, the natural amphitheatre provides provides a wonderful and uninterrupted viewing of horse racing the whole way round the course. Located two miles south of Hexham Town Centre (less than 10 miles from Haydon Bridge) the racecourse is easily accessible to the public with buses from Hexham Railway Station on race days. Directions on the racecourse website. 15 fixtures in 2010, with a range of admission prices. Annual Membership (single and double badges) includes free entry to 38 race meetings at other courses round the country.
Website www.hexham-racecourse.co.uk

National Trust

The Trust’s local attraction, which should not be missed, is Allen Banks which leads into the Staward Gorge. These were the Victorian grounds of Ridley Hall (Private, now the Haydon Bridge High School boarding wing) and home to the Bowes-Lyon family. See the Dippers as they feed in the River Allen, Red Squirrel and the last home of the Dormouse in the north. Near is the hamlet of Beltingham and its famous church and ancient yew tree. Access is free to the grounds and walks but there is a small parking charge.
Website www.nationaltrust.org.uk

Other trust attraction within easy travelling from Haydon Bridge are Cragside, Gibside Pleasure Gardens, Housesteads and Hadrian’s Wall, Bellister Castle, Souter Lighthouse, Washington Old Hall, Seaton Deleval Hall, Thomas Bewick’s Cherryburn, George Stephenson’s Cottage at Wylam, Wallington, The English Lake District and the amazing Northumberland Coastline. Find them here www.nationaltrust.org.uk

Pony Trekking

A trekking centre offering treks in the North Pennine hills is to the south of the village at Sinderhope, Allendale. You can see information online here www.sinderhopeponytrekking.co.uk

Rock Climbing

Good quality routes are to be found at nearby Crag Lough on the Roman Wall for low to mid grade climbers in spectacular countryside. The Northumbrian Climbing Guide has details for you here www.thenmc.org.uk

Ski Allenheads

One of the few locations in England where you can enjoy the benefits of portable and fixed tows. Check all the conditions on the web site before you go www.ski-allenheads.co.uk

The John Martin Trail

This is in two sections, an easier North route of 2.5 miles and moderately strenuous South of 11 miles. This popular walk covers the areas which influenced Victorian artist John Martin, born in the village, who became the ‘most popular artist of his day’. There are regular waymarks and six information panels en route. A free pamphlet with maps is available from Claire’s Newsagents, the 'Bridge' library both in Church Street, T.I.C.s or download in PDF format (1.1Mb) by following the link.

Walks Information

Three walks leaflets containing a range of self-guided trails are available from The Bridge Community Library and other outlets in the village.

Farms, Romans and Countryside is either a seven mile loop, a 13 mile loop through Northumberland National Park and along Hadrian’s Wall, or can be used as a six mile walk connecting the village with Housesteads Roman Fort.

Hills and Woods That Inspired An Artist explores the valley to the south of the village in loops of 7¼  or 4 miles. Climbing into the North Pennines AONB through countryside which inspired the works of celebrated Victorian artist John Martin, it passes his birthplace on the outskirts of the village.

Village Walks offers three short and easy walks in the immediate surroundings of Haydon Bridge. These favourite strolls for villagers over the years explore the riverbank and some hidden corners of the village.

Click here for more details and downloadable copies of the leaflets

For all information Ordnance Survey 1:25000 scale Outdoor Leisure map OL 43 is an essential. This is available from Claire’s Newsagency, Church Street, Haydon Bridge during your visit and covers the Roman Wall area of the National Park and most of the surrounding zone of interest. It is also available directly either in paper or digital format from www.leisure.ordnancesurvey.co.uk

Other nearby area walks can be found here

Walking The Hadrian's Wall Path? If you need a self-guided walking tour of Hadrian's Wall you can find details of one company providing this service at www.hillwalktours.com

Other local walks can be downloaded via the National Trail/Hadrian’s Wall website at www.nationaltrail.co.uk

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