Level: 6

MTB Ride Level 6


30 miles

Ride Type

XC / Gravel


2,800 ft

Trans Isle of Wight

£165.00 inc. VAT

New open group date for September 2023

This summer it’s time for a new adventure with a difference. We’ve created the exciting feeling of a big Marmalade weekender, but as a one-day experience.

The Isle of Wight is a biker’s paradise: a haven of rolling chalk hills surrounded by the sea, with quiet trails and stunning views. This is your chance to bike across the island – from Ryde in the east to  to Yarmouth in the west – on our brand new ride for 2023: a big day out that could be the highlight of your mountain biking year.

Two ferry crossings and minibus travel back to Portsmouth are included.

Fancy this as a private experience?

Taking a bike across the Solent to ride around the Isle of Wight and savour its landscape has long been a rite of passage for road cyclists. Now it’s time for mountain bikers to enjoy an island adventure of their own. Resident bikers know how good the riding is, basking in seclusion from the mainland. For 2023, we have created a trip to remember – delivering the best mountain biking experience on the Isle of Wight with all the logistics taken care of by the Marmalade team.

A big day out

  • Sail to Ryde Pier from Portsmouth on the Wightlink passenger ferry, specially designed to carry bikes
  • Enjoy a seaside warm-up along Ryde promenade towards Nettlestone Point
  • Connecting with the vast off-road trail network we head towards Alverstone and the first of our exhilarating descents
  • More superb cross-country miles bring us close to Newport then on to Brighstone Forest
  • The white cliffs past Freshwater Bay and the Needles come into view as we ride over Compton Down
  • Rounding up a brilliant trans-island adventure with a cold drink in Yarmouth before the ferry to Lymington
  • The final leg back returns us to Portsmouth in a luxury minibus and bike trailer

A route for regular off-road bikes or e-bikes

This route is a traditional cross-country mountain bike ride. There will be fun bumpy descents, rooty forest trails and wide-open pastures. So a hardtail or short travel full suspension mountain bike would be perfect. Big travel bikes are welcome – just be prepared for some extra effort.

This ride can be enjoyed on a conventional mountain bike, e-bike or gravel bike. If this ride is right for your level of experience and fitness, then bring your choice of machine. Marmalade rides have a friendly welcoming atmosphere, and e-bike riders who find themselves first up the hill are always patient and understanding of those relying on human-power alone. 

Ensure your bike of choice is maintained and ready to ride, and please pack a spare mech hanger with your usual trail pack spares. For e-bikes please consider bringing a spare battery or range extender if you feel your power consumption may call for one.

Riding with Marmalade

A vital part of the ride is the special Marmalade MTB ingredient: fun. Marmalade events are known for their friendly, sociable and welcoming buzz. We ride and we laugh. With this new Isle of Wight trip, we have captured the adventurous feeling of a big Marmalade weekender into a superb one-day trip. We think you’ll love it.

Bike hire

If you need to hire a bike,  we can recommend these excellent providers. Based in Sussex and Surrey, you may have to co-ordinate carefully with them to agree when you pick up and return your bike before and after our full-day Isle of Wight experience.

  • Duration: We have all day, if we need it, but we expect to take around 4 to 6 hours, with plenty of stops
  • Distance: 30 miles / 48 kilometres (approx.)
  • Elevation gain: 2,800 ft / 855m (approx.)
  • Technical Grade: Advanced Novice (But this ride is awesome for all levels)
    (any questions, please contact us)
  • Meet time: 8.00 am for a 9.00 am ferry crossing
  • Meet point: Wightlink passenger ferry terminal, Portsmouth Harbour rail station
  • Group size: 5-7 (max.)

What’s included

  • Ferry crossings: Portsmouth to Ryde and Yarmouth to Lymington
  • Minibus and trailer transport from Lymington to Portsmouth
  • Fully guided by a professional MTB leader
  • If you’ve enjoyed other Marmalade rides like the Devil’s Punch Bowl, Cheesefoot Head or the Tour de Rings then this ride could be perfect for you.
  • You will need reasonable fitness, happy to cycle for around 4-5 hours, with breaks.
  • You will be confident in mountain bike handling skills and proficient with operating your bike in the correct manner.
  • The trails will include features such as roots, small rollable steps and loose stones.
  • Your bike (whether your own, or hired) must be a suitable quality mountain bike. Road, hybrid and budget bicycles are not suitable for this ride.
    • Gravel bikes may be suitable for skilled riders who are confident in their bike-handling
    • E-mountain bikes are welcome if they are well maintained and fully charged.
  • The ride does contain a number of undulating – and in places challenging – climbs
  • Riders must be aged 18 or over unless accompanied by an adult also participating on this ride

If this sounds a little beyond your current skill and fitness level, please contact us, so we can help you choose the right option.

Equipment, kit and clothing

  • Suitable mountain bike or gravel bike in good working order
  • Helmet (compulsory)
  • Gloves and glasses
  • Backpack
  • Spare inner tube
  • Puncture repair kit and bicycle pump (our guides carry a small number of other spares for emergencies)
  • Clothing and shoes appropriate for cycling and weather conditions on the day
  • Padded cycling shorts for comfort
  • Personal choice of drink and ride snacks

What’s not included

  • Bike hire
  • Personal clothing & equipment
  • Overnight accommodation
  • Pre-, during- or post- activity refreshments
  • Travel to Portsmouth at the start of the day (but your journey from Lymington to Portsmouth at the end of the day is included)
  • Personal travel/activity insurance


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