How do you like to ride?
It is the ‘mountain’ part of mountain biking that gets me most excited. The variety of terrain in the Lake District makes it easy to tailor rides to your tastes, and the weather!
Skills days: Sometimes taking a few moments to think about technique can improve your riding no end. A typical skills day is just like “going for a ride”, but taking some time to focus on technique or develop skills. If you would like your ride peppered with riding tips and tricks, let me know on the enquiries form. Beginners very welcome, I love helping people discover the sport!
Want to tick off a classic Lakeland epic? Looking for inspiration? The following is just a tasting platter of some of the riding on offer.
Three Passes – Kentmere
In this corner of the national park, the valley of Kentmere offers high passes and valley trails. Here is home to the Three Passes ride, the definitive epic of the south-eastern Lakeland fells!
Traversing the three passes of Garburn, Gatesgarth and Nan Bield, this area has a true variety of trails. Wide, rocky descents, technical singletrack and fast, flowing trails await. There is a price to pay in the hike-a-bike in places, but the views and trails from the top, as always, are well worth the effort. The network of trails in Kentmere allows rides to be tweaked to all energy levels.
A brilliant bike shop, cafe and brewery at the start of the ride, easily accessible by train (Staveley) and only a short drive from the M6 puts the cherry on this delicious cake.
The highest bridleway in England!
Towering over Thirlmere to the west and Ullswater to the east, the Helvellyn ridge is riddled with trails, each with its own character. After hours riding and poring over the map trying to devise the ‘ultimate’ Helvellyn route, the only conclusion is: it depends on your mood. Choose the degree of hike-a-bike in your climb (some is always needed), choose your descent to be technical or not, choose to make one or two ascents of the main ridge. Whatever the combination, Helvellyn is always a favourite.
In favourable conditions, evening rides are not unheard of!
Tour of Great Gable
A grand tour of this Lakeland legend.
Beginning with the sharp warm-up of Honister Pass, this ride involves a significant amount of hike-a-bike to access some very technical trails. If you have the mindset for it, this is one of the most spectacular journeys you can make by bicycle in the district, taking you deep into some of the least-frequented valleys and always surrounded by the high fells.
South Lakes CX
Recently bought a cyclocross bike and want to take it for an adventure? Maybe you’ve done a race or two and feel bad that nice bike is just sitting in the garage? Or, perhaps you just want to go for a really good ride, taking in some great scenery.
Whatever your motivation, I found my ‘cross bike was way too fun to just ride for an hour in winter at races. On a long summer day or for midwinter base miles, this ride is great for getting out there and having fun on bikes.
There’s more than just the North Face Trail! Some of the most fun riding around is in Grizedale, with so many different trails it’s great fun piecing together the best loop. Perfect for the day time or night rides.