The most famous route in the South Downs is the South Downs Way, which is 160 km. It is mainly double track on top of the south downs ridge with every once in a while a steep descent, followed by a steep climb. Of to the side you will find numerous bridleways, some more exciting then others. But in general the riding is more a classic xc style, so not very technical.
Except when it is wet, because the chalk will quickly become very slippery.
There are a couple of small DH areas such as Stoughton and Steyning, where you will have to push up your bike.
There is not a proper trail centre as you will find in the rest of the UK, but Queen Elizabeth Country Park comes pretty close.
There are one blue and one red trail, both are short (6 km. and 7.5 km.), but good fun. The red has some off-camber sections that will get slippery in the wet. The blue has sections with gravel to provide good grip in all circumstances. There are also non-waymarked xc- and enduro trails, ask at the cafe or keep your eyes open.
Mountain biking in the South Downs
The South Downs Way (SDW) mostly stays on top of the ridge, but you will come through a couple of villages and there are always more just a quick descent away. If you want to stay longer I would recommend the central part of the South Downs area such as Petersfield, Midhurst, Petworth and Amberley.
Hotels & Apartments
Books and maps
South Downs way .gpx (at the bottom of the page)