Check out the new East Devon Trail bikepacking route spanning 185km / 115mi

Covering a range of terrains, the multi-surface route takes in Devon’s rolling green hills and big sea views

East Devon Trail
(Image credit: ForTheHellOfIt.cc)

The East Devon Trail is a new long-distance and multi-surface bikepacking route, starting and finishing in the county’s capital of Exeter, over in the South West of England. 

Proud Devonian, Katherine Moore – a zoologist by training and cycling writer by trade – curated the route as a showcase for the stunning roads, trails and views the region has to offer.

Rather than being simply the back drop to a race course for a select few to trade Fastest Known Times over, the East Devon Trail was designed to show something a little different.

East Devon Trail

(Image credit: ForTheHellOfIt.cc)

Pop that competitive mindset to one side and try adopting a different pace for this one – it’s no accident that the EDT winds its way through a variety of nature reserves, gorgeous towns, quaint villages and the odd dog-leg to a viewpoint. It's perfect for exploring on a gravel bike loaded up with a full complement of bikepacking bags and overnight gear. 

The intention has been to show the incredible wildlife of East Devon and its rare lowland heath. There are migratory bird service stations, nation-leading species reintroductions and, of course, the marvellous vistas and views along the gravel tracks that accompany them.

Then there’s the more earthly satisfactions of fish and chips on the beach, farm shops bursting with local produce and delicious cream teas. (If it’s not too personal a revelation, Katherine Moore herself falls into the #creamfirst camp. Though surely the most fundamental question is really: what cream? Whipped or clotted…?)

 Sustainable travel

East Devon Trail

(Image credit: ForTheHellOfIt.cc)

Accessibility has been a key consideration. The East Devon Trail deliberately starts and finishes at the main train station in Exeter, catering for car-less travel. It’s also possible to link up the trail with other established bikepacking routes, as the EDT intentionally strays – just a little – into Dorset to the border town of Lyme Regis, where you meet the Wessex Ridgeway and Old Chalk Way routes.

The East Devon Trail can be viewed – and the GPX file downloaded – on Komoot, by following the link here. Otherwise you can follow the link from the box below. 

 

The East Devon Trail was created in partnership with local stakeholders, including Devon Wildlife Trust, Wild East Devon, the Pebblebed Heath Conservation Trust, the RSPB and East Devon AONB.

While enjoying the East Devon Trail is free, riders are strongly urged to consider donating to the local FORCE Cancer Charity to help fund their vital work. FORCE (Friends of the Oncology and Radiotherapy Centre, Exeter) became a charity in 1987, with a Cancer Support and Information Centre at the Royal Devon and Exeter Hospital that has supported many families in the decades since. 

Check out more great gravel rides in the UK

For those a little further afield, why not check out our guide to the best places for gravel riding across the US and UK. Otherwise, if you're interested in some curated gravel and bikepacking routes, we've team up with Pedal Tripr to offer some unforgettable experiences.

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Stefan Abram
Stefan Abram

Starting off riding mountain bikes on the South Downs way, he soon made the switch the road cycling. Now, he’s come full circle and is back out on the trails, although the flat bars have been swapped for the curly ones of a gravel bike.


Always looking for the next challenge, he’s Everested in under 12 hours and ridden the South Downs Double in sub 20. Although dabbling in racing off-road, on-road and virtually, to date his only significant achievement has been winning the National Single-Speed Cross-Country Mountain Bike Championships in 2019.


Height: 177cm

Weight: 67–69kg