Robert Thorpe Editorial Blog

PEDALNORTH INSTAGRAMEDITOR IN CHIEFROBERT
THORPE

Pedalnorth of  Wherever You Live 😉

Cycling is one of the best and easiest way to explore nature, the mountains and the wealth of amazing places in which we live. For me, as a climber and mountaineer, it’s something that allows me to continue to live out my passion for wild places and adventure. I also love writing and the power of the written word; how it can express so many emotions – the emotions that we experience when cycling or mountain biking in the hills and mountains.


Pedalnorth started out as simply a place to store the routes that I and good friends explored on 2 wheels. Over the years it’s grown into one of the leading independent cycling websites and quality tested route databases in Europe, with readers from over 200 nations – a fact which I’m immensely proud of, leading such talented athletes and writers. Now, when we look at the website, it simply means to ‘pedal north of wherever you are in the world’, to  seek  adventure and to enjoy your own fitness and cycling lifestyle!

With colleagues such as Larisa, Nadezhda, Scott and Steve, and with the support of our industry partners, especially Claudia and her team in Italy at Vitamina C Communications & PR, we continue to try to bring you the very best of written content about our own personal love for cycle sport, triathlon and the very best products; and, here is my own contribution – away from my usual role of simply editing others superb writing, as I share my own love of cycling with you. 🙂

The Best Bike Shops – Paceline

Opened in 2016 by cycling enthusiast Mark Hanson, in a short timeframe Paceline cycles has become one of the ‘go to’ locations for Yorkshire based riders, looking for exceptional service and some of the very best custom bike builds available in the U.K. retail scene.
November 15, 2022/by Pedalnorth Website

Forever In Electric Dreams

Why have I so far avoided an E-Bike - I can’t answer that, because there’s no good reason, save for the simple fact that as I head into my late 50s, I want to keep as physically fit as possible. I kind of just thought that, maybe if I had an EBike I’d pedal less! How wrong I was...
October 15, 2022/by Pedalnorth Website

Retail Therapy for Cycle Shops

There’s a wide spectrum of styles within cycling retailers. From the legendary old school shop that we’ve known since childhood, where they put the coffee on and we simply chat, to the ultra modern and unfortunately sometimes pretentious retailer, where they keep their main showroom locked and only open it for invited customers - no, believe me, these people exist.
October 11, 2022/by Pedalnorth Website

Coverdale and Wensleydale with Lake Cycling

This is probably one of the most picturesque rides in the Yorkshire Dales National Park, taking in some superb climbs along its short distance. Starting from the market town of Masham, it takes you on a tour with lots of history, passing abbey's and a castle along the way, before returning to Masham for cake 😉
September 7, 2022/by Pedalnorth Website

Foot Love

Watching SIDAS and Lake setting up at the Boardman Centre, it was clear that this was going to be an interesting day. True to this, a skeletal foot came out ... interesting.
August 4, 2022/by Pedalnorth Website

Camelbak Hawg Pro Backpack & Womens Luxe

There are so many options for biking backpacks these days. However, Camelbak have revisited the classic Mule pack, and they've created something rather special. We took a close look at the new Camelbak Hawg Pro and Ladies Luxe pack over spring and early summer.
July 20, 2022/by Pedalnorth Website

Elite Ice Fly and Nano Fly Water Bottles

It’s the height of summer and it’s getting hotter, so hydration on and off the bike is critical. If you do become dehydrated, then it’s at least 24 hours to recover, which is why drinking off the bike is also important. And, you really do need that fluid to be refreshing, which is why Italian brand, Elite, have taken their award winning Fly bottle to new levels of technology with their latest range of bottles.
July 20, 2022/by Pedalnorth Website

My Personal Transfaragarasan Challenge

It’s over a week now since I arrived back from Sibiu in Romania. It’s a place that I love dearly, for its amazing history, the beautiful mountains nearby, and for its people – some of whom are like family. Riding up the Transfaragarasan Highway was one of my life moments – something that I’ll remember forever.
July 15, 2022/by Pedalnorth Website

Presca Sportswear Custom Cycling Kit

Presca was a brand that caught our attention due to their strict adherence to ethical principles at all levels of their organisation and production. All of the clothing is made from recycled fabrics, and they’re constantly working with others to drive forward their commitment to the environment.
July 13, 2022/by Pedalnorth Website

Bike Box Alan Premium

When you look at most bike boxes, the design, even of the newest models, often seems to follow the classic design from our own favourite brand - Bike Box Alan. Now, we’re based in Yorkshire too, so let’s get this out of the way immediately; yes, we see BBA as a partner, now and into the future. Why - well, simply because they cannot be beaten in terms of looking after your precious bike.
July 13, 2022/by Pedalnorth Website

Transfargarasan Challenge and Sibiu Cycling Tour Stage

Described as probably the best road in the world, the Transfargarasan Highway is truly an epic climb. Thankfully you can now ride it as part of a unique closed road event once a year - so we went along 🙂
July 5, 2022/by Pedalnorth Website

Sibiu Cycling Tour 2022 Prologue

A sweltering 31 degrees heat and the international arts festival at Sibiu, saw the Pedalnorth Voom Nutrition team enjoying ice cream and international cycling racing, as the UCI Sibiu Cycling Tour began with a short evening prologue.
July 2, 2022/by Pedalnorth Website

Sibiu Cycling Tour & Transfargarasan Challenge

It's a special place, my beautiful city of Sibiu. It's where I grew up, went to university, and I know so many of the really good places, the best cycling routes, the best views in the city and the best views from the hills overlooking the city. Now, it has a world class cycling tour too, and you can ride the roads of the racers.
July 1, 2022/by Pedalnorth Website

Elite Cycling Fly Bottles – Ride Routine

Before every ride I do the same things. Albeit that I'm 56 years of age, I seem to be no different from what I was racing track and field years ago, lining up my shoes, with the socks placed across them and a lucky jacket nearby.
June 29, 2022/by Pedalnorth Website

Schwalbe Pro One TT Tan Wall Tyre

When the schwalbe pro one TT tan wall 25mm arrived here for a test, it was obvious that we needed to hand it onto a speed freak - thankfully Ben fits the bill, having a love of fixed gear urban riding and lo-pro bikes. This tyre however would be going onto his Giant TCR.
June 24, 2022/by Pedalnorth Website

Pirelli Scorpion XC M 2.2 Mountain Bike Tyre

Yes, I know that many riders set things up with a 2.4 at the rear and 2.2 at the front – and we might try that next- but this test was all about the Scorpion XC M 2.2 and how lively and fun a ride it provides – and boy is this an exciting tyre.
June 18, 2022/by Pedalnorth Website

SIGR RIKSVÄG 92 Bib Shorts

These bib shorts from Swedish brand SIGR are pro level, and yet come without the price tag. Super comfortable and with loads of compression, they're ideal for long days on the bike
June 18, 2022/by Pedalnorth Website

Sigr Fjällbäck Jersey

SIGR is a brand that’s quickly establishing itself as a quality brand with unique designs. Their latest short sleeved jersey, the Fjällbäck is typical of the brands messages within their designs, of being close to and adherence to principles that support the natural world.
June 16, 2022/by Pedalnorth Website

Elite Cycle Trainers for Performance in Spring

Yes, my best fitness days are behind me and things tend to break or creak more easily, requiring repair. And so, as a consequence of this, getting out for long winter rides isn’t always a great idea or possible, meaning that when spring comes along, on occasions I’m playing catch up on the hills, as I battle to get that early season fitness that we dream of.
June 9, 2022/by Pedalnorth Website

Gravel Bike Coast to Coast Moors Section

Ride through the North Yorks Moors on some of the best gravel bike trails in the U.K., as you take on our Gravel Bike Coast to Coast route, with Voom Nutrition
June 6, 2022/by Pedalnorth Website

Camelbak Podium Water Bottle Range 2022

It's hotting up outside and it's definitely time to start looking at water bottles. Larisa and Robert take a look at the latest bottles from world leaders in hydration, Camelbak 🙂
May 24, 2022/by Pedalnorth Website

Morning Ride Motivation

It's not always great weather for riding. However, as cycling writers, we don't always get a choice - motivation and the weather may be against us, requiring extra personal strength just to get onto the bike...
May 11, 2022/by Pedalnorth Website

ROSTI Gera Mens and Ladies Freeride Mountainbike Jersey

Rosti are renowned for the stylish designs on the road. We took a look at their latest mountain jersey, to see if it took their high performance and style from the road to trails.
May 5, 2022/by Pedalnorth Website

Gravel Bike Coast To Coast Lakes Section

Our U.K. Gravel Bike Coast to Coast route starts at the beautiful coastal hamlet of Ravenglass, before entering Eskdale and the Lake District. This technical section brings epic views and a mixture of easy gravel riding and more technical terrain, as you ride your gravel bike towards Sedbergh and the Dales.
May 2, 2022/by Pedalnorth Website

Rosti Hypno Jersey Bibs and Socks

ROSTI are a design orientated cycling wear brand, but they also excel in performance. Here's their latest mens kit, just in time for sprimg and summer. The HYpno jersey is both unique and stylish.
April 20, 2022/by Pedalnorth Website

Yakima Front Loader Bike Carrier

Yakima make carriers all kinds of bikes, and their Front Loader is probably one of the most secure and well fitting bike carrier on the market. We tested it both in Romania and in the U.K.
April 10, 2022/by Pedalnorth Website

Waiting for spring

Waiting for the end of winter can be mentally tough. The first warm days can be simply a test of our mental strength, as the thermometer rises towards 20 degrees, only to be plunged towards 0 again soon, with snow showers and freezing rain. Robert writes about his own thoughts while waiting for spring.
April 5, 2022/by Pedalnorth Website

Rosti – Designing in Style

Cycling isn’t simply a sport, it’s a way of life and yes, even a subculture. And, as with all subcultures and their members and followers, cycling has its specific cool icons that through no reason other than their uniqueness and quality sit at the very top and radiate their emblematic presence to others. ROSTI is one such iconic brand within cycling and its subculture, and their designs are works of art in themselves.
March 28, 2022/by Pedalnorth Website

Cronos CR3 Boa Carbon Road Cycling Shoe

When you think of Italian shoes, you instinctively think of style, and this is also true with cycling shoes. Cronos is a brand that’s becoming more widely known in Europe, as it grows in popularity at all levels, from the social cyclist, to the UCI Pro rider; and it’s easy to see why, when you look across their range.
March 3, 2022/by Pedalnorth Website

Pirelli PZero Velo 4S

If you’re after a tyre for colder and wetter conditions, then the Pirelli PZero Velo 4S is probably an ideal choice. We’ve been using it in the harsh conditions of the Yorkshire Dales National Park, and it’s proved itself to be a fast rolling, grippy and hard wearing tyre for all conditions.
March 3, 2022/by Pedalnorth Website

Elastic Interface Triathlon Chamois Pad

Triathlon cycling element is an aggressive position, where the rider is usually at their limit and trying to create as much performance as is possible. Add to this that the suit worn by the triathlete has two other elements to content with, then it’s a difficult decision to make in terms of what the chamois pad should be like and how technical it needs to be.
March 1, 2022/by Pedalnorth Website

Gravel Bike Coast to Coast Dales Section

Ride through the Yorkshire Dales on some of the best gravel bike trails in the U.K., as you take on our Gravel Bike Coast to Coast route, with Voom Nutrition
March 1, 2022/by Pedalnorth Website

Mountain Bike Tour of Brucegi and Strunga – Romania

Romania and the area of Transylvania have some of the most beautiful forested areas and awesome mountains in Europe - if not the world. This two-day mountain bike trip takes in the mountain area of Brucegi and the Omu Peak, a famous Romanian summit.
February 25, 2022/by Pedalnorth Website

Into 2022 with the Elite Tuo

In a world filled with indoor interactive cycling trainers, many people will be surprised to see that the good old ‘wheel on’ trainer, or ‘turbo trainer’ as it was once familiarly known, still has a place. Indeed, the Tuo Interactive Wheel On trainer by Italian brand Elite, is more than capable of holding its own
February 20, 2022/by Pedalnorth Website

Gravel Bike Coast to Coast Route

From inspiring Eskdale in the west, through to the historic Roman Cam Road in the Dales and Wensleydale and the magnificent beauty of Jervaulx Abbey,onto Rosedale in the North Yorks Moors, this Gravel Bike Coast to Coast route has something for everyone.It's also the very first U.K. Gravel Bike C2C - and we thing it'll be the best too 😉
January 24, 2022/by Pedalnorth Website

Settle to Carlisle Cycling Route

One of the most famous rail journeys in the U.K., the Settle Carlisle road cycling route takes you from the historic Yorkshire Dales market town of Settle, all the way through the magnificent Dales National Park, to historic Carlisle and it's wealth of Roman and medieval history.
January 23, 2022/by Pedalnorth Website

Rosti – Italian by Design

Rosti are renowned for their excellence and performance, and for their unique design culture. We decided that it was time to look behind this family firm from Italy and its beating heart.
January 22, 2022/by Pedalnorth Website

Deuter Flyt 14 Mountain Bike Pack

Any mountain biking pack needs to first of all perform as a pack on the hills. After all, it’s pointless carrying anything on a bike that doesn’t perform in its basic function. Thankfully, the Deuter Flyt 14 backpack performs superbly in its base function as a mountain bacpack or for adventure days on a gravel bike.
December 29, 2021/by Pedalnorth Website

Rolling The Gap

I love exercise and training - it’s part of who I am. I wasn’t unduly concerned at having a break; it’s probably done me some good in a way, but I knew that I needed to get back to daily training. Going for the odd short ride or a long walk just doesn’t cut it for me. I need to sweat and to ache and know that my heart has been pushed.
December 20, 2021/by Pedalnorth Website

Pirelli Scorpion MTB Mixed Tyres

When the trails are tough and technical and can change in an instant if the weather is feeling temperamental, tyre choice is vital. Thankfully, these Pirelli Scorpion MTB Mixed Terrain Tyres are just what’s required. Tested and developed alongside the world’s top teams, they’re made for days on the trail when you can expect the unexpected.
December 10, 2021/by Pedalnorth Website

Elite Mia and Mia Thermo Bottles

It’s quite refreshing to see world leading brands like Elite bringing back the ‘Full Metal Jacket’ cycling water bottle, with no plastic used in its construction. Following on from their Bio Green water bottles, this dynamic Italian brand are using their technical knowledge and expertise to help us older cycling kids to be greener.
November 28, 2021/by Pedalnorth Website

Yakima High Road Tyre Hold Bike Carrier

The Yakima High Road is a top of the range heavy duty piece of engineering, designed with typical Japanese effectiveness. The front wheel is locked into place by a moveable set of hoops that wrap around the wheel. Simply lift the bike up and place the front wheel into the front hoop, bring the second hoop in towards the wheel and tighten things up with a calibrated ratchet that clicks when the correct tension is applied.
November 14, 2021/by Pedalnorth Website

Alé Mens Klimatik KTour Bib Shorts

‘Bib shorts in autumn and winter’ I hear you exclaim! Yes, because Italian brand Alé have worked out that riders often need performance shorts for those colder days, and they’ve used their knowledge and know how to produce the Klimatik K-TOUR shorts.

Thermal and elastic, the K-TOUR bibshort is designed for riding in particularly humid mid-winter days, and is also really useful in autumn and in early spring. It’s a perfect kit item for the serious cyclist. And, you can also add warmers if you're not from the north... we're used to the cold 😉
November 12, 2021/by Pedalnorth Website

Alé Mens Klimatik KTour Jersey

Alé know that cyclists need a different kind of protection in autumn. One that also covers milder winters days and those early days of spring. They’ve used this knowledge to create the K-Tour jersey and bib shorts from their Klimatik fabric collection. Having tested it extensively, we really do like it.
November 11, 2021/by Pedalnorth Website

Making the most of autumn riding

Autumn and winter riding can be amazing. It’s a different kind of challenge, often trying to catch the weather. We thought that we’d help you out over the colder months, with a few simple to stay safe and get the most from riding outside during autumn and winter.
November 9, 2021/by Pedalnorth Website

Sutton Bank and Boltby Scar

A super stunning all year round mountain bike route, with some of the best views in Yorkshire. Natural trails are mixed with man made tracks, to bring you a fantastic ride.
October 22, 2021/by Pedalnorth Website

Wensleydale TrailFest

While this is a reasonably short 2 hour ride, it packs a punch, and is probably one of the very best rides in the National Park. With hard climbing, the rider is rewarded with epic descents and superb views across the hills. This is definitely a favourite ride with the team here.
October 14, 2021/by Pedalnorth Website

Rh+ Klyma Sunglasses

Everyone seems to be making sunglasses for cyclists these days, and so it’s difficult to work out which brand to trust. Fundamentally though, a good starting point is always to look towards Italy - the home of Rh+. The Italians know sport, they know style and they always bring this knowledge to their cycling products - with lots of performance features too.
September 29, 2021/by Pedalnorth Website

Rh+ 3 in 1 Cycling Helmet

Helmets are a tricky item of kit for all of us. After all, we have different head shapes and sizes, making it tricky to find a helmet that matches your own shape. And, it’s clearly the most vital safety item for cyclists, meaning that the helmet you choose should be well designed with your safety in mind. Rh+ understand this, and their 3 in 1 helmet is a great option for riders who ride multiple disciplines: road, mtb and gravel.
September 29, 2021/by Pedalnorth Website

RH+ Code Bib Shorts

The RH+ Code bib shorts are designed and sold as a high end short, and we tested them here in the Yorkshire Dales National Park to see how they stood up to things.

The first thing that you notice is that they’re a very light bib short. And of course, being Italian means that they’re a good fit, so choose a size above your normal sizing. They’re a compression short too, which basically means that they’ll fit close and tight against the skin, maximising the muscle performance.
August 26, 2021/by Pedalnorth Website
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