Chainsaws and elbow grease are helping a forest near Whitby recover from one of the harshest winters ever.
The heavy winter snow caused hundreds of trees to topple over, blocking many miles of trails and making roads impassable in the 8,600 acre Dalby Forest.
But thanks to a major effort all the mountain bike routes are now open, along with most of the walking trails.
To celebrate the Forestry Commission is opening the gates to the forest for free tomorrow (Wednesday 23 February), lifting the normal toll fee for cars.
Ranger Mark Barker said: “We had a metre of snow in places, which caused a lot of disruption but we have got most the trees cleared and Dalby is very much open for business.”
The free day is a chance to use the 35 mile bike network, spy emerging snowdrops or take a walk through some of North Yorkshire’s most stunning woodland habitats. Dalby has been described as a gem in the Forestry Commission’s crown, offering unrivalled recreational opportunities, together with abundant wildlife, a wilderness feel and over 70 scheduled archaeological sites for those wanting to explore.
More than 400,000 people visit each year.