Stats: 9.7 miles and 2100 feet of ascent
Try Muncaster Castle or the Bowerhouse Inn at Eskdale Green.
A gentle bimble round the wooded flanks of this outlying granite ridge. Suitable for doing with youngsters, especially if you find yourself riding alongside the L’a’l Ratty.
1. Start at the car park at Forge Bridge (SD149 995). Head south-west along the road.
2. After the road swings left, turn right onto the bridleway (Muncaster Castle 3.5miles). Follow this along the south-facing flank of the fell, on the level.
3. After a while, the path slants up the fell – a good pull. Then follows a fast rattle down Fell Lane.
4. At the road, take the bridleway hard right (Muncaster Mill). If you can find it, take the concessionary bridleway northwards. If, like me, you stick to the regular bridleway, go through the farmyard and tread incongruously across a lawn covered in trampolines and slides. This leads to a jungly singletrack that leads to a better track coming in from the right (probably the concessionary route)
5. Head up the valley through woodland, with the stream on your right. After a while, the trail trifurcates and we take the central line, swinging down to the left to the railway.
6. Turn right and follow the railway line. Soon, you’ll swap from being on the right to on the left of the line.
7. When you see a large, slatted barn, go through a gate on the left of it (not obvious) and round the barn to a straight lane heading north to the road.
8. Turn right at the road and pedal pleasantly past the Bowerhouse Inn, into Eskdale Green, turning right at the Public Byway, over the railway bridge.
9. At the bottom of the hill, and retrace the first mile back to the start.