Chopwell Wood really is a wood for everyone. This 360-hectare mixed woodland is a real gem, set right on the fringe of Gateshead. Miles of paths allow fantastic access, walking and cycling into the heart of this fascinating woodland.
More recently Chopwell Wood has been recognised as a PAWS (Plantation on Ancient Woodland Site). This means it was an ancient forest but in more recent times it has been planted with modern timber crops. Most of the ancient trees, predominantly oak, were felled in the 17th and 18th century for ship and bridge building. The remnants of these still survive on the steep crags above the river Derwent. Today, areas of conifer are being removed to help the wood return one day to it's original cover of native trees.
You can now download the Chopwell walking leaflet.
6 amazing forests in 6 breath-taking locations. Chopwell, Gisburn, Grizedale, Hamsterley, Kielder, Whinlatter are the Super 6! Grab your bike and discover our exhilarating trails!
No two parts of this varied woodland are the same and spectacular views of the River Derwent and North Pennines await discovery.
Just the right size for an evening ride or a quick warm-up for some of the region's other mountain bike hot spots at Hamsterley Forest and Kielder Water and Forest Park.
Horse riders are welcome in the forest.
Find out what's on in Chopwell Wood.
The Friends are a local charity that help look after the wood, raising money and lending practical support to complete recreation, conservation and educational projects. The group celebrated their 20th anniversary in 2012. To find out more about the work they do, events that are on and how you can help the group visit their website or call Liz Searle on 01207 542495.
What do other visitors say?
Super walk in the woods today. Saw deer, red kites, mistle thrush and newts! However, signage is totally confusing. I was using a leaflet produced by "Friends of Chopwell Woods" which had various routes colour coded yet on the ground signage was missing or confusing. There also seems to be two sets of signs with the same colours (red and blue) but that are totally unrelated. It seems that two organisations are putting up different signage using the same colours for different routes.
I don't have a dog, but, as the previous user said, there should be some dog bins and notices to encourage dog owners to pick up mess.
I live near the woods and know them pretty well but for visitors from further afield, I can imagine that they could become very frustrated with the difficulty of planning and following suitable walks and won't come again.
1 StarAmanda Hay, 8/Dec/2015
Been to Chopwell Wood today and leaving at dusk after showing Our 3 yr old the Christmas lights. Exit is clearly marked and stating one way rather than usual exit almost at end and logging truck coming towards us. Forced both me and Dad in his car to reverse about 400m down road to turn, watched me take wrong track back in dark then blocked our exit again. Was furious and scared lost in woods in dark with a 3 yr old in one car and a 3 month old baby in the other. Apparently this route is only for weekend and gate should have been closed!! Hoping this can be addressed as loggers seemed so un caring especially as we had young kids in the cars.
Forestry Commission Response
So sorry you had this unfortunate experience. The barrier should normally be locked and the signs covered, but after the high winds at the weekend, the signs had been uncovered. Immediately after the incident, the signs were taken down and timber hauliers reminded to keep the barrier locked at all times. Apologies again for the distress this caused your family.
3 StarsAnonymous, 19/Oct/2015
Lovely woods however the trails signposting is virtually non-existent!
We wanted to follow the trails but couldn't find many signs at all.