GPS Cycle and Walking Routes

Drakes Trail

22 miles (35 km)

This 22 mile cycle or walk runs from Tavistock to the coast at Plymouth, along National Cycle Route 27. Much of the route is traffic free with visits to local parks and woods to enjoy on the way. The trail is named after the explorer Sir Francis Drake who was born in Tavistock and has a statue in Plymouth. The route also passes along Drake's Leat a watercourse constructed in the late 16th century to tap the River Meavy which supplied Plymouth with its water.
The route starts in Tavistock, next to the river Tavy. Near here you pick up a traffic free section running along a disused railway line. It will take you south west to Launceston New Road Bridge before heading south east towards the Tavistock Canal and Brook Mill on the river. You continue south to Rixhill before crossing the River Walkham on the Grenofen Bridge. You continue south through Sticklepath Wood and Harrowbear to Yelverton. Here you could stop off to the visit the beautiful Yelverton Garden House.
The next stage takes you to Clearbrook where you pick up the Plym Valley Trail. This off road section follows the old Plym Valley railway from Clearbrook to the splendid Saltram Park. This section passes Bickleigh Vale and Great Shaugh Wood with views of the River Plym as you go. You'll also pass Cann Woods on your left as you make your way towards the coast. In Saltram park National Cycle Network Route 27 runs along a splendid traffic free trail through Saltram Wood and along the river.
After passing the park you cross the river on Laira Bridge and head through Princes Rock and St Jude's before finishing near the harbour in Plymouth.

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Drakes Trail OS Map - Mobile GPS OS Map with Location tracking

Drakes Trail Open Street Map - Mobile GPS Map with Location tracking

Further Information and Other Local Ideas

In Tavistock you pass the Granite Way. The trail explores the Dartmoor National Park on a disused railway line.

Photos

Tavistock Viaduct - geograph.org.uk - 43153

Tavistock Viaduct. Tavistock Viaduct was immediately south-west of the site of the Southern Railway station at Tavistock (behind the photographer).

Grenofen Bridge over the River Walkham - geograph.org.uk - 521272

Grenofen Bridge over the River Walkham

New Cycleway - geograph.org.uk - 795909

This is part of a the cycleway being built along the northern edge of Roborough Down to connect Yelverton and Horrabridge.

Roborough Down near Yelverton - geograph.org.uk - 1208159

Roborough Down near Yelverton Looking across the open land of the down, which is kept closely cropped by sheep grazing, towards Yelverton and Dartmoor in the distance. In the Second World War this was the site of RAF Harrowbarrow. Back then this view would have looked along number 2 runway.

The Plym Valley Cycleway - geograph.org.uk - 883230

The Plym Valley Cycleway

Cann Quarry Viaduct No1 - geograph.org.uk - 1367374

Cann Quarry Viaduct No1

The Laira by Saltram Point - geograph-2732892

The Laira (the Plym Estuary) and beyond, from the tidal flats at the Saltram Estate

Plymouth harbour - geograph.org.uk - 678309

Plymouth harbour. Taken from the Plymouth-Roscoff ferry this shows a round landing stage in the harbour. The marina and the land behind are in the adjacent square

Video

GPS Files

GPX File

Drakes Trail.gpx (On Desktop:Right Click>'Save As. On Ipad/Iphone:Click and hold>Share>Save to Files')

Memory Map Route

Drakes Trail.mmo (On Desktop:Right Click>'Save As. On Ipad/Iphone:Click and hold >Share>Save to Files)