Cam Road to Hawes
A Classic Ride that uses the Roman Road to access the great descent to Hawes, before climbing again and dropping home at speed. This one also takes in a steep road climb, Fleet Moss, in order to access the Cam Road again, for one of the best descents in the Dales.
Stats: 32 km and 848 metres of ascent
Refreshments & Where to Stay
Bainbridge is a super village and has lots of options nearby for accommodation. Theres also a great cafe in the village.
A terrific route with some hard climbing, amazing views and epic descents.
- Head out of the village of Bainbridge and climb the tarmac road towards Semmer Water, soon meeting the famous bridleway signed ‘Beggarman Road’.
- Climb this awesome bridleway on a rocky surface, crossing the road at 1/3 distance. Summit it at the top of Fleet Moss, joining the Cam Raod continuation.
- Shortly after Fleet Moss a bridleway is signed to the right, descending to Hawes – take this. It’s extremely technical in places and care should be taken. A fast and furious epic trail.
- At a point halway down this descent, a BW junction shows the Pennine Way right and Hawes continuing down the very technical and roocky steps left – take the technical rocky steps with cation.
- At the road turn right and ride into Hawes.
- Take Fleet Moss road climb from Hawes, reaching the top of the Cam Road again.
- Descend to Bainbridge at speed.
Click below for GPX file and accommodation
We want to help you to get back to what riding is all about -adventure. In the first of a new series of blogs, we’re visiting Elterwater Independent Hostel in the English Lake District, to show you some amazing mountain bike routes from the door.
There are some days in the mountains that are truly special. Tackling the English Lake District in winter produces such days. Follow Rich Duckworth on this epic Lake District mountain bike route and take your own adventure!
Images by Erika Kaiser for Ride Hard Hungary
ALE Sunset Kit for Ladies
Images from the review by Larisa Chinces
Stats: 6.5 miles
Dunsop Bridge features a car park, toilets and Puddleducks cafe. If you have kids in the party, there’ll be plenty of time for a relaxed sit by the river feeding the ducks with duck food thoughtfully provided by the cafe.
This is an ideal ride for a young family where the smaller members of the party can stretch their legs on tarmac but with negligible traffic. Consequently, we’ve listed it as both a road and MTB route but there’s no law against you doing it on a hybrid, a shopper or a penny farthing if that’s what takes your fancy.
If you need a USP to persuade the kids, bill this as a Journey to the Centre of the Earth. OK, a journey to the centre of the UK, anyway. If you cut out a map of the United Kingdom from plywood, the point of balance is Brennand Farm, our furthest point. Don’t listen to any Southerners who claim that Meriden, or Bedford are at the centre of things – Lancashire is where it all hinges.
Straightforward from mapping
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Waddington Fell, Lancashire
Stats: 10.5 miles and 1450 feet of ascent
Pubs in Waddington, West Bradford and Grindleton.
A pleasant double loop on the south-facing flank of Waddington Fell. It’s nowhere difficult, and either loop could be tackled individually. The turf can be soft at the top.
1. Find somewhere out-of-the-way to park in West Bradford. Trundle along to Grindleton on the minor road and set off on the long climb up Main Street.
2. At the 181m spot-height, the main road veers right, with a curiously staggered signpost pointing to Slaidburn. Go straight ahead onto the minor lane.
3. At the bridleway sign, turn left. Cross a broken wall on your left and descend parallel to the valley.
4. At the T-junction at White Hall, turn right at a large house with a statue in a fountain. Descend pleasantly to the Grindleton-West Bradford Road again.
5. Turn right at the bottom and, as you go through West Bradford, turn right into Eaves Hall Lane which turns into Moor Lane as it climbs. You’ll soon come to a big sign announcing Seedall’s Farm – Bridleway only and the tarmac ends so the climbing gets a bit more interesting.
6. Ignore the footpath turning right and turn right at the top where the bridleway veers at 295 m.
7. Follow this line for two fields-worth, then turn right at an unmarked spot with marshy ground ahead and a ruin up on your left. Soon, you’ll see another ruin (photograph above) with a splendid view of Pendle Hill and bags of Bronte-esque atmosphere. Soon after, the trail dinks down to the left then zags sharply right.
8. The trail is indistinct on the ground but the key is to zag slightly more than you zigged. Cross the stream and follow a faint field boundary heading south-east. This soon becomes a strong track.
9. At the bottom, turn right on the road then look out for the bridleway sign forking away on the right. This is faint, gaining a slight causeway for a while. When the houses come into view, bear right and plunge down a fast, grassy slope to the start.
click below for gpx file
Thieveley Pike, Lancashire
Stats: 11 miles and 1250 feet of ascent
Todmorden and nearby Hebden Bridge would be our choices.
This short excursion into the wild lands between Yorkshire and Lancashire includes two deliciously overstated place names. Anyone expecting Thieveley Pike to be a soaring pinnacle will be disappointed, just as a prior visitor to the Verdon will question whether the Cliviger valley really counts as a “gorge.” But context is all and it is certainly a dramatic cleft, in Pennine terms. The Pike is an unassuming swell of moor rendered dramatic by the crenelated edge overlooking the gorge.
1. Ride south-east on the A646 to Cornholme.
2. Just as you enter the village, fork right into Carr Road. Climb for about 2 miles to a moorland plateau.
3. Double back to the right on Flower Scar Road. This climbs up the moor but we fork left onto a sketchy trail across the north-facing flank.
4. At places, there is just a series of short posts (in varied colours of blue, yellow and white) to guide you. Look out, too, for incongruous interpretation boards for the Todmorden Moor Geology Trail and some industrial history of the mining activity here. The distinctive buildings down on your left are part of an observatory.
5. Drop to the A681 Bacup road and climb briefly to the right.
6. When the road dinks left and drops, turn right towards the less-than-scenic landfill site.
7. Turn left near the power lines, towards a remote farmstead. Follow this line for a mile or so.
8. Climb up to the right to gain the trig point at Thieveley Pike. Follow the watershed to the A671 Burnley Road.
9. Follow the new bridleway alongside the road, ignoring the track flanking the moor on your right.
10. Instead, take the lower track towards the even-more-remote farm at Cow Side but bypass this on the left.
11. Drop on grass from the Mary Towneley memorial, noting the ingenious fencing to keep your front wheel out of the rabbit-hole traps.
12. Zig-zag down to the right, crossing the railway to Holme Chapel.
13. Turn right to regain the start point.
click below for gpx file
Salter Road, Lancashire
Stats: 17 miles and 2100 feet of ascent
Nothing. Not so much as a baked bean. The raison d’etre of this route is to get away from all that commercial, Starbucked razzle-dazzle. Chances are you’ll not see anyone else on the whole ride, so make sure you’re kitted out.
The Salter Road is a grand high-level crossing of the Bowland Fells. It can be done as part of a longer loop but it’s good value as an out-and-back as well. The route is described from the Roeburndale side but you could just as well come at it from the south. It makes an ideal outing for a summer’s evening, when the softly dipping moorland light washes away the day’s cares. Be careful in winter as you’ll be spending a long stretch above 1000′ with no escape routes and shouting “Help!” will summon nothing but slavering wolves.
image by Jon Sparks
Once you’re on the road, it’s a piece of duff to follow. Stay straight as the Romans before you and don’t venture into the seas of heather to either side.
Bonus Start/Finish: From Claughton, you can climb up to the wind farm on Caton Moor, then take the big zigzag via Haylot Farm to get to Lower Salter. This adds 10 miles and another 1,000 feet of ascent.
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Rivington Pike, Lancashire
Stats: 7.3 miles and 1985 feet of ascent
Occasional ice-cream van at the car park at the furthest-north point.
Lord Leverhulme bequeathed this rambling area of woodland, rhododendrons, quarries and follies to the good people of Bolton (and I’m given to understand there are a few) in Edwardian times. It is now a vast playground for picnicking families courting couples and, of course, anyone who still likes playing out on bikes. And that means you.
Rivington’s particularly good for an evening ride to shake off the frustrations of the working day and watch the sun dip over the Fylde coast. The view from up here can be stunning – this panorama is from the slightly higher Winter Hill just over the moor. Or come on a crisp winter’s night with your lights blazing. All of the tracks are stone-based, making for all-weather fun. Of the descents shown, the short drop south off the Pike is a pleasant set of rocky drop-offs followed by a fast, rut-dodging rattle. The one from George’s Lane alongside Wilderswood is fast and swoopy. But the descent of Belmont Road (don’t be misled by the suburban-sounding name) from the Pigeon Tower is one of the great test-pieces anywhere – worthy of comparison with the Beast of Hope Cross. Don’t even contemplate going home without rattling your brains out down there…
In keeping with the feeling of the place and its density of bridleways and byways, we’ve shown a suggested itinerary but will omit a turn-by-turn description. Just stay off the footpaths, OK?
click below for gpx file
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