Red Kite Trail
Please note temporary changes to route in CHOPWELL WOOD.
Diversions are in place due to tree felling operations. Please follow diversions and trail signs on the temporary route. Forestry Commission apologises for any inconvience caused. Any problems please call The Friends of Red Kites on 07790 085 659
Already walked the Red Kite Trail?? Let us know what you thought!!
The Red Kite Trail is an 18 kilometre (11 miles) circular walking route through the scenic countryside of the lower Derwent Valley in Gateshead and County Durham. It meanders through a beautiful mixture of mature woodlands, wetlands and open countryside where there are many opportunities to see red kites and a variety of other wildlife. It also passes by areas of important historical and heritage interest.
The Trail starts and finishes at Derwenthaugh Park car park at Winlaton Mill on the A694 (OS grid ref: NZ186609). It is identified by Red Kite Trail way-markers (in both directions) and can be walked either in two stages over two days, or as a longer walk in one day.
The following is a general guide to the Red Kite Trail:
Stage One - The first stage of the Trail is 7.5 km (4 mile) and guides walkers from Winlaton Mill to Lintzford, via Rowlands Gill. The route follows the River Derwent upstream through Derwenthaugh Park and the Derwent Walk Country Park, along multi-user routes on well-surfaced paths that are accessible to wheelchair and pushchair users.
The Trail passes through Rowlands Gill before joining the Derwent Walk Railway Path where it connects to Lintzford via a public footpath. This path has steep slopes and rough surfaces, unsuitable for wheelchairs and pushchairs. At Lintzford, walkers can catch the Red Kite bus to return to the Trail starting point, at the car park at Winlaton Mill, if so desired. Wheelchair and pushchair users should catch the Red Kite bus in Rowlands Gill.
Stage Two - The second stage of the Trail, a 10.5 km (7 mile) stretch, guides walkers from Lintzford to Winlaton Mill, via Barlow. This stage of the Trail follows a network of rights of way where rougher surfaces, stiles and steep slopes are common. The Trail passes through Chopwell Woodland Park, Spen Banks Wood and then north to Barlow village, one of the best places to see kites.
From Barlow, the Trail continues on public footpaths back to the A694 where it crosses into Paddock Hill Wood. It passes the Thornley Woodland Centre before rejoining Derwenthaugh Park where way-markers guide walkers back to the start of the Trail at the car park.
The following guides have been produced to provide visitors with Red Kite Trail information. The Trail leaflet is available to collect from various regional tourist information and visitor facilities and libraries. The Detailed Guide provides an in depth description of the Trail route and additional local wildlife, heritage and history background to the lower Derwent valley. This is only available as a pdf download.
Detailed Trail Guide (PDF 2.38mb)
Red Kite Trail Leaflet: A3 PDF (1.14mb) | Printable Webpage (opens in a new window)
Local Facilities for Visitors
A range of visitor facilities, such as toilets, pubs and information centres, are located along the Trail route. Click here for more local facility information.