Cycling in the Lake District and Cumbria

Cycling past Buttermere

Cycling in the Lake District and Cumbria

Walking, running and cycling in the Lake District and Cumbria. What could be better?

The English Lake District is perfect for outdoors folk, and – while better known for the hill-walking and running – is ever more a destination for cyclists. Of course, there are hills in the Lake District. Some quite big ones really.

So if you are a cyclist who likes a challenge, that’s great! Plenty to offer.

If you prefer flatter routes, those exist as well, particularly in parts of Cumbria just outside the Lake District itself. You just need to know where they are!

There are a number of cycle maps and guide books to help, and I have some suggestions of different types of routes below, along with the map or guide book that would help you plan your route and find your way.

Lake District and Cumbria maps and guide books

Below you will find sections on different aspects of cycling in the Lake District and Cumbria:

  • Suggested cycle touring and cycling holiday hubs
  • Gentle / family bike rides
  • Cycle touring
  • Waymarked long-distance cycle routes
  • Mountain biking / off-road cycle routes
  • Cycle-friendly holiday accommodation
  • Cycling maps and guide books
Keswick, one of the cycle touring hubs in the Lake District
Keswick, one of the cycle touring hubs in the Lake District

Suggested cycle touring and cycling holiday hubs in the Lake District and Cumbria

If you are bringing bikes by car, there are all sorts of places in Cumbria and the Lake District that welcome bikes. See below for some suggestions.

I’ve also chosen three possible hubs:

  • Keswick, for some challenging and adventurous touring, access to the coast and to the C2C cycle route, and close to Whinlatter Forest for mountain bike trails
  • Ambleside, as above, but also with Grizedale Forest and its range of ability trails and the Langdale valleys not far away
  • Grange-over-Sands, with access to flatter cycle routes suitable for families, and reachable by rail

Gentle / family bike rides in the Lake District and Cumbria

When you open a map of the Lake District itself, one thing you tend to notice is the lack of flat land and therefore flat roads suitable for gentle or family cycle rides. You tend to have to look around the outside of the Lake District National Park for cycle rides for young families.

Grange-over-Sands to Town End
Grange-over-Sands
Grange-over-Sands

Just outside the Lake District National Park, Grange-over-Sands is a really nice little town sitting on the Morecambe Bay estuary. From Grange-over-Sands a five-mile cycle along the quietest of country lanes brings you to the village of Town End (which has a pub for refreshments).

This is a gorgeous ride, thoroughly recommended.

Start off on quite a busy road (so take great care) but very shortly turn right on to the quiet lanes. Then just follow the Sustrans signs until you get to Town End.

Map: This is part of The Bay Cycle Way route, so the Sustrans Bay Cycle Way map is ideal.

Maryport to Allonby cycle route

This is an almost entirely traffic-free and flat cycle route hugging the shoreline on Cumbria’s west coast for about 6 miles.

Starting from the car park outside Maryport’s Lake District Coast Aquarium (which also has a café and toilets), cross over the bridge back towards town and immediately turn left. For the first couple of hundred yards you will be on a road, but then the road stops and instead you can ride traffic-free on the old promenade for half a mile.

Then cycle out through Maryport Golf Club and crossing a road (so take care of little ones here) and you are on to the cycleway. For about three miles you are on the east side of the road, before the cycleway crosses the road again (take care…) and is right next to the sea for the last 2-3 miles into the village of Allonby. The village has a café, shop and play area.

Map: This is part of Hadrian’s Cycleway (from Ravenglass to South Shields, so the Sustrans Hadrian’s Cycleway map is ideal, also giving other family friendly route ideas.

Grizedale Forest

The Forestry Commission’s Grizedale Forest lies between the shores of Windermere on the east and the village of Hawkshead on the west.

There are several waymarked cycle trails on forest roads, some short and quite flat, others longer and more of a challenge.

Of course, there are also real mountain-bike trails as well, so potentially something for all the family.

Have a look at their website to see if it is for you:
https://www.forestryengland.uk/grizedale/cycling-and-mountain-biking-trails-grizedale

The Solway coast

Cumbria’s northern peninsula is some distance from the Lake District National Park, and the scenery is very different to the mountains of the Lakes. It is flat! This is a 14-mile ride, and for much of the time you will be looking across the Solway Firth estuary to Scotland.

Park a car at Anthorn, a small village next to the river and cycle west along quiet country lanes.

The route follows the shoreline for about ten miles, stopping at the Solway Wetlands Centre near Bowness-on-Solway for a well-deserved cup of something (and maybe a tour of the RSPB site).

Then turn right at Glasson to cut across the peninsula for another four miles to bring you to the village of Whitrigg, where you turn right again to cycle back to Anthorn.

The coastal sections of the route are part of Hadrian’s Cycleway, so the Sustrans Hadrian’s Cycleway map is perfect.

Keswick on the old railway track

This would have been the first family-friendly cycle route to mention, but unfortunately the bridges crossing the river were washed away in 2015 and have yet to be restored. So there is just a short section open now, about a mile long.

This is (was) part of the C2C route, so Sustrans and the council are in discussion about how to replace the bridges so that you can cycle traffic-free to the village of Threlkeld, but they have not been replaced as yet.

It still makes a nice (but short ride), including an incline out of Keswick, then a descent under the main road before coming to a halt at what would have been the first river crossing.

Map: you probably don’t need one. Park at the swimming pool and cycle out along the cycle path next to what was Keswick Railway Station. Cycle as far as you can go. Stop and look at the incredible damage that the flood water did to the bridge and the river banks. Maybe have drink and a picnic next to the river. And then cycle back again.

Cycle touring in the Lake District

There are two very good guide books for cycle touring in the Lake District and Cumbria, or you can use the cycling maps from Sustrans or the Ordnance Survey Tour Map to create your own cycle routes. You might also choose to read ‘A Lake District Grand Tour’ of which more below.

Suggested routes from Keswick

The circuit of Skiddaw
The circuit of Skiddaw and Blencathra
Circuit of the Skiddaw and Blencathra ranges

33/34 miles and ‘strenuous’. Fantastic views and mostly quiet lanes until the last section back into Keswick.

Park in Keswick (or hire a bike there), heading out on the C2C cycle route to Threlkeld. Follow signs to Mungrisdale then Caldbeck (excellent pub here with its own brewery). Then follow signs to Bassenthwaite, before following the main road (though not too busy) back to Keswick.

Both the CycleCity and Cicerone guide books give good descriptions and maps. See below. Or use the Sustrans or OS Tour map.

Other suggested cycle routes from Keswick:

See the Sustrans South Cumbria and the Lake District map to follow these routes.

  • Over Whinlatter Pass to Lorton, past Crummock Water and Buttermere, back via Honister Pass and Derwentwater. Very challenging.
  • Cycling to Ambleside via Castlerigg Stone Circle, Thirlmere, Grasmere and Red Bank
  • The circuit of Derwentwater. Take care on busy days down the east side of the lake.
  • Over Whinlatter Pass to Lorton, Cockermouth and the reverse of the Workington branch of the C2C

Suggested cycle routes from Ambleside

Ambleside, Ullswater, Thirlmere and Grasmere circuit

41 hard miles according to the Cicerone guide book (below), but well worth it if the legs and lungs will stand it.

The route starts in Ambleside heading very steeply up The Struggle and over the rock-strewn Kirkstone Pass. Then drops beautifully down to Ullswater, following the lakeshore before climbing up again northwards.

Quiet lanes then take you to Threlkeld (choice of pubs available) and then drop you down on to the St Johns in the Vale road (B5322). Cross over the main Keswick-Ambleside road to ride round the very quiet western side of Thirlmere. Then join the new cycle track that avoids climbing Dunmail Raise on the main road. From there you can either fly down towards Grasmere on the main road, or cut off on small lanes.

Don’t use the main road from Grasmere to Ambleside (which is very busy and unpleasant) if you still have the legs for a climb up the challenging Red Bank to bring you back to Ambleside on the Hawkshead road.

Other cycle routes from Ambleside
Cycling in Langdale
Cycling in Langdale

These probably best followed using the Sustrans South Cumbria and the Lake District map:

  • Head west out of Ambleside in the Little Langdale. Up and over to Great Langdale. Return via Elterwater and Skelwith Bridge.
  • Again head west from Ambleside, turning south for Coniston. Cycle down the east side of Lake Coniston, then turn back north to follow the lanes through Grizedale Forest (including a stop at the café) and into Hawkshead. Back from there in many places off-road.

Guide books for cycle touring in the Lake District and Cumbria

Cycling in the Lake Distict Cicerone Guide Book - sample pages
Cycling in the Lake Distict Cicerone Guide Book
Cicerone’s Cycling in the Lake District

The guide book begins with a tour of the Lake District over several days. It’s challenging, of course, but then this is the Lake District! The book then has day rides, again many of which are quite challenging, though some less so. Rides include:

  • Ambleside to Eskdale and back the long way round
  • Penrith to Haweswater
  • A circuit of Skiddaw from Keswick via Caldbeck
Lake District Cycle Tours
Cycle Tours in and around The Lake District
Cycle Tours in and around the Lake District‘ from CycleCity in association with Ordnance Survey

Using excellent Ordnance Survey mapping, the guide book has 20 cycle tour descriptions, the length varying from 24 to 35 miles. Each graded from Easy to Strenuous. Rides include:

  • Keswick and Newlands – 26 miles, strenuous
  • Ring around Kendal – 33 miles, moderate
  • Grasmere and Coniston – 25 miles, strenuous
Planning your own circular rides in the Lake District and Cumbria

You have the choice of either Ordnance Survey or Sustrans cycle maps to plan and ride your own tours of the Lake District and Cumbria.

  • Sustrans South Cumbria and the Lake District pocket cycle map
  • Sustrans North Cumbria and Dumfries pocket cycle map
  • Ordnance Survey Tour Map of the Lake District and Cumbria

Waymarked long-distance cycle routes in Cumbria and the Lake District

The C2C coast to coast cycle route

For full information on the route, see the C2C page here.

Hadrian’s Cycleway

Normally an east to west cycle route, Hadrian’s Cycleway follows a route within Cumbria from Carlisle down the west to coast to Ravenglass.

The Reivers Route

Originally intended as a reverse C2C route, the Reivers Route is a very good ride in its own right.

Within Cumbria, the Reivers Route map brings you south from Carlisle to Caldbeck, skirting the northern fells to Cockermouth. From there it reaches the coast at Workington, then follows down the coast on mostly off-road routes to the start point of the C2C in Whitehaven.

Walney to Wear

Walney to Wear is an excellent long-distance waymarked ride (one of my top five in fact), but unfortunately the map is out of print. It can be followed using Sustrans maps. For more information on which, go to the Walney to Wear page.

The route runs within Cumbria from Walney Island near Barrow-in-Furness around the southern coastline of Cumbria to Kendal, then across the quieter reaches of eastern Cumbria before setting off through the Pennines.

Cartmel
Cartmel, on the Bay Cycle Way route
The Bay Cycleway

This a newer cycle route, again starting near Barrow, but doing a loop around Morecambe Bay, ending in Morecambe / Lancaster.

It is a great route, much of it quite flat – but not all if it, so do take a look at where the contours are on the Bay Cycle Way map before you start!

And take time out to visit Cartmel.

A Lake District Grand Tour
A Lake District Grand Tour
Tour of the Lake District

There are several ways to do a grand tour of the Lake District. You can use the excellent Cicerone Cycling in the Lake District guide book.

Or you can use the Sustrans and OS Tour maps to make your own route, just as I did to write “A Lake District Grand Tour“, which is not a guide book at all.

It’s more a humorous tale of taking on a challenge to cycle over all of the passes, to see all of the lakes, and to go to the furthest north, south, east and west points of the Lake District National Park.

This is one hell of way to see the Lake District National Park! A great description of the grandest of Lake District tours. Get pedalling!’ wrote the Chief Exec of the National Park (no less).

Mountain biking / off-road cycle routes in the Lake District

There are both wild and structured mountain bike routes in the area.

For structured routes, go to Whinlatter Forest, west of Keswick, and Grizedale Forest south of Hawkshead, both with excellent mountain bike routes in Forestry Commission woodland.

Lake District Mountain Bike Map opened out
Lake District Mountain Bike Map from Goldeneye

There are two main options for maps and guide books for more wild mountain biking.

Goldeneye’s Lake District Mountain Bike Routes has ten routes printed on a very robust waterproof map, and shown very distinctly and clearly.

Lake District Mountain Biking, from Vertebrate Publishing
Lake District Mountain Biking, from Vertebrate Publishing

Five of the routes are centred on Keswick, the others spread around the area. They are extremely good routes, worked out by the experienced Al Churcher.

Routes include The Skiddaw Round and Around Blencathra, the Watendlath and Honister Circuit, and Eskdale.

The other option is Lake District Mountain Biking – Essential Trails, published by Vertebrate Publishing.

In the form of a book rather than a map, it details 27 routes, splitting them into Classics, Epics, Enduros and Killers!

Routes include High Street, Borrowdale and Skiddaw.

Cycle-friendly Holiday Accommodation in the Lake District and Cumbria

There is a let of holiday accommodation in the Lake District and Cumbria of course, but the following are particularly happy to welcome cyclists.

To be completed…

The maps and guide books for cycling in Cumbria and the Lake District

Back to home page

Cycling in Devon

The author selflessly exploring South Devon

Cycling in Devon

There is no doubt that cycling in Devon can be a joy.

The county has some fabulous cycle routes, taking in the South Devon coast with its estuaries, beaches and resorts and the North Devon coast with its coves and hills and of course more beaches. Then there are the cycling and mountain-biking / off-road possibilities on or around Dartmoor and Exmoor.

Devon’s cycle routes include shorter and medium-length circular routes, whether family rides or more challenging ones, as well as long-distance signed Sustrans routes for cycle touring.

Below you will find sections on different aspects of cycling in Devon:

  • Suggested cycle touring and cycling holiday hubs
  • Gentle / family bike rides
  • Circular cycle tours
  • Guide books and maps for cycle touring
  • Waymarked long-distance cycle routes
  • Mountain biking / off-road cycle routes
  • Cycle-friendly holiday accommodation
  • Cycling maps and guide books

There are excellent maps and guide books to those routes as well, with maps from Sustrans, Ordnance Survey (the OS Tour series), Harvey Maps and Goldeneye Maps, plus guide books for the
Devon Coast to Coast cycle route.

All the maps are listed at the bottom of the page here, or you can click on a green link to go direct to them in the Bike Ride Maps shop.

Cycle maps and guide books for Devon

So whether you are local to Devon, or planning a cycling holiday in Devon, I hope the following helps.

Suggested cycle touring and cycling holiday hubs in Devon

There are some towns or areas that to my mind lend themselves to being the hub of a cycling holiday in Devon.

  • Tavistock, with access to Drake’s Trail and the Granite Trail, plus Dartmoor and to the Plym Valley. Cycling distance to Sir Francis Drake’s house.
  • Barnstaple, on the Tarka Trail and in cycling distance to the beaches on the north coast such as Woolacombe
  • Salcombe, to explore the estuaries and beaches of south Devon

Gentle / family bike rides in Devon

The Exe Estuary
The Exe Estuary – flat, family cycling
Exeter to Exmouth (and back)

Starting by the river in Exeter, this is a flat ride of about 8 miles each way, with continuous interest along the way.

The route mostly follows the estuary shoreline, nipping through fascinating Topsham with a finish in Exmouth for a drink and a snack, before setting off back to Exeter.

Map: Sustrans South Coast West

Exeter to Dawlish Warren Nature Reserve (and back)

Just as flat as the above ride, this follows the western side of the Exe Estuary from Exeter to Dawlish Warren National Nature Reserve.

Start by the river in Exeter, and use the map to lead you over to the western side, then just follow the water!

Map: Sustrans South Coast West

Drakes Trail
Drakes Trail
Drake’s Trail in the Plym Valley

Park at Plym Valley Railway and cycle north along Drake’s Trail.

The very gently climbing route follows disused a railway line as far as the hamlet of Clearbrook, about 6 miles, taking in viaducts and tunnels along the way. Younger families may choose to turn around at this point.

Beyond Clearbrook, there are short sections on the road to Yelverton and beyond to Tavistock. The town of Tavistock has lots of interest, so make time to stop and wander around. Plenty of tea shops as well…

Tavistock also makes an excellent cycling hub as well, if you are looking for somewhere to stay over and have a range of cycling routes on the doorstep, plus of course walks on Dartmoor. (See cycling hub suggestions below).

Map: Sustrans Devon Coast to Coast

The Tarka Trail
The Tarka Trail
The Tarka Trail

Perhaps the most well-known of the day rides in the West Country, the Tarka Trail justifies its billing as an accessible ride for almost any cyclist.

It is an excellent off-road and mostly flat ride from / to Barnstaple and the old railway station (café) close to Great Torrington. It is about 14 miles altogether, each way.

If you are cycling from Barnstaple, signs take you beyond the roads around the town and quickly onto the old railway line / now cycleway that parallels the estuary of the River Taw. It’s very easy and pleasant cycling.

At the village of Instow the Taw meets the estuary of the Torridge, and across the far side you will see Appledore. Carry on and you come to Bideford’s village east of the Torridge: East-the-Water. For those wanting a short ride, you can walk across to Bideford’s town centre just on the far side of the bridge (note – this is the second bridge you come to, not the first, which is the main A39).

After Bideford, the estuary turns into river, with the Tarka Trail criss-crossing through lovely countryside perfect for otters (after all, the route is named after Tarka the Otter, written and set just here).

Just short of Great Torrington is a café as part of the old railway station, which can be a good place for a break before the return journey. Great Torrington itself is up a very considerable hill, a nice place, but you will need good lungs going up.

The return journey to Barnstaple is just as pleasant. Look out for otters…

Of course, you can also cycle the other way out of Barnstaple. Five miles away, hugging the northern side of the Taw estuary, the cycleway leads to Braunton,

Map: Sustrans Devon Coast to Coast

Stover Trail

This is a short off-road and flat cycle route between Bovey Tracey and Newton Abbot. Ideal for families, with cafés and facilities in both towns.

Just 3 1/2 miles (each way) so can be achieved by smaller children.

There is an overview of this and the other routes on the Explore Devon website.

Map: Harvey’s Dartmoor and Surrounding Areas for Cyclists

Circular cycle tours in Devon

Circuit of Dartmoor
Harvey Dartmoor map - cycle touring side
Harvey Dartmoor map – cycle touring side

How about a grand tour of Dartmoor?

What a challenge.

And there is the perfect map for planning your route: Harvey’s Dartmoor and Surrounding Areas for Cyclists

The map has suggested road cycling on one side, and on the reverse has off-road and mountain-biking routes.

Circular day rides in South Devon and around Dartmoor
Dartmoor and South Devon Goldeneye map - the southern half
Dartmoor and South Devon Goldeneye map – the southern half

There are great day rides shown on Goldeneye’s Dartmoor and South Devon – Cycling Country Lanes and Traffic-free Family Routes including routes from:

  • Crediton
  • Bovey Tracey
  • Buckfastleigh
  • Okehampton
  • Tavistock
  • Ivybridge
  • Totnes
  • Kingsbridge

The routes are marked on Goldeneye’s robust waterproof map and have brief descriptions of the type route. For example, from Ivybridge there is the “Southern Edge of Dartmoor“, 29Km/18miles through South Brent, Avonwick, Ugborough and back to Ivybridge. “A quiet route with long, easy sections between few steep climbs.” The mapping is very clear and easy to follow.

The distances are 13 to 25 miles, but you can also join routes together to create longer ones.

So as not to be too bulky, one side has south Devon and the southern half of Dartmoor, while the other side has the northern half.

Circular day rides in North Devon and around Exmoor

Day rides in North Devon and Exmoor are covered in Goldeneye’s Exmoor North Devon – Cycling Country Lanes and Traffic-free Family Routes including cycle routes from:

  • Barnstaple
  • Ilfracombe
  • Braunton
  • South Molton
  • Simonsbath
  • Dulverton
  • Tiverton
  • Dunster
  • Minehead

Again, the mapping is very clear, the distances generally from 18 to 35 miles, some with options for longer or shorter versions.

Planning your own circular rides in Devon

If you want to plan your own circular cycle routes around Devon, you can either go for the large OS Tour Map of Devon and West Somerset. Or two smaller maps – the Sustrans North Devon Cycle Map (3) and the Sustrans South Devon Cycle Map (2).

The OS Tour map is great for planning long rides, if a bit cumbersome to use en-route. It’s also not printed on weather-proof paper.

Sustrans are in process of upgrading the weatherproof-ness of their maps and are of a size to fit in a pocket as you go.

As I write, the North Devon cycle map is on thin-ish paper, while South Devon has been upgraded to tougher paper. Both have National Cycle Network routes very well marked, plus other recommended roads suitable for cycling.

On the reverse, the Sustrans maps have detailed maps of routes through major towns plus suggestions for day rides – some quite challenging ones.

Waymarked long-distance cycle routes in Devon

The Devon Coast to Coast
Ilfracombe - the start of the Devon C2C
Ilfracombe – the start of the Devon C2C

The Devon C2C cycle route is one of the best fully signed Sustrans National Cycle Network routes.

It starts at Ilfracombe on Devon’s gorgeous north coast with some up and overs to Barnstaple.

From there it follows the Tarka Trail inland and then the Granite Way from Okehampton to Lydford on to the fringes of Dartmoor. At Tavistock the route joins Drake’s Trail (above) gently dropping towards Plymouth.

Much of the route is on disused railway lines, so the gradients are generally very kind.

The end of the Devon C2C is on the iconic Plymouth Hoe.

Map: Sustrans Devon Coast to Coast. Guide Books: two available – from Excellent Books and from Eos Cycling.

The South Coast West

The new(ish) Sustrans South Coast West map is a linear route starting at Dawlish close to the resorts of the Devon Riviera and heading east, eventually joining with the South Coast East map with its finish in Kent.

For the Devon cyclist, the main interest is the routes to and from Exeter as far as the county boundary just beyond Seaton.

It is an excellent map for those routes.

Mountain biking / off-road cycle routes in Devon

Dartmoor cycling
Dartmoor cycling

Dartmoor and Exmoor offer some great off-road riding, some of it relatively easy, other sections more challenging.

The Goldeneye mountain bike maps for Dartmoor and Exmoor are very good, with great route maps and descriptions. You won’t destroy the maps either, even in bad weather. They are very robust!

Dartmoor Goldeneye Mountain Bike map inside
Goldeneye Dartmoor off-road and mountain biking map

Each route is in its own boxed off section, so you can easily concentrate on route-finding as you go.

Harvey Dartmoor off-road and mountain biking side
Harvey Dartmoor off-road and mountain biking side

The Harvey “Dartmoor and surrounding area for cyclists for off-road cycling and cycle touring” is of course also extremely well mapped.

It shows the whole of Dartmoor rather than just specific routes, so you can easily create your own plan.

That does make for quite a large map, good for planning of course, slightly less manageable when you are riding, but it depends what you are looking for. (You can always get both…)

Support the local businesses

And don’t forget to support the local businesses. One way or another.

Devon cream tea

Now is it cream then jam, or jam then cream?


Cycle-friendly Holiday Accommodation in Devon

Devon is of course a great place to go on holiday, especially with a bike. The following are particularly happy to welcome cyclists.

To be completed…

The maps and guide books for cycling in Devon

For map and guide book postage rates, see below.



Back to home page

V4 and other Brittany and Normandy cycle routes

The V4 cycle route runs from Roscoff to Mont St Michel across the north of Brittanny, linking in to a range of other Brittany cycle routes, as well as the Veloscenic cycle route running west Paris and Versailles through Normandy to finish at Mont St Michel.

More information on each of them below:

V4 Brittany Cycle Route - Brittany Cycle Route Roscoff to Mont St-Michel
V4 Brittany Cycle Route – Roscoff to Mont St-Michel

Brittany's Green Ways
Brittany’s Green Ways

Veloscenic - Paris-Versailles-Mont St Michel by Bike
Veloscenic – Paris-Versailles-Mont St Michel by Bike

The Veloscenic cycle route – new guide book

There is a brand new guide book to the Veloscenic cycle route, taking in Paris, Versaille and Mont-St-Michel.

Highly recommended (the route and the guide book!), you can read more about it here:

The Veloscenic cycle route guide book from Excellent Books

Veloscenic - Paris-Versailles-Mont St Michel by Bike
Veloscenic – Paris-Versailles-Mont St Michel by Bike

Pennine Cycleway maps

Having been out of print for many years, Sustrans have just redesigned and reissued the Pennine Cycleway maps.

There are two maps, the first Pennine Cycleway South from Derby to Settle and the second Pennine Cycleway North from Settle to Berwick-upon-Tweed. A fantastic route the length of the Pennines.

Lightweight and on waterproof paper. Thoroughly recommended.

Pennine Cycleway South Sustrans Map
Pennine Cycleway South Sustrans Map

Pennine Cycleway North Sustrans Map
Pennine Cycleway North Sustrans Map

Sustrans South Coast maps

Sustrans have published new maps for NCN cycle route 2 from Dawlish in Devon to Dover. There are two maps on water-resistant paper, the South Coast West map as far as Brockenhurst in the New Forest, and the South Coast East map continuing through Hampshire, Sussex and Kent.

South Coast West Sustrans Cycle Map
  South Coast West Sustrans Cycle Map

South Coast East Sustrans Cycle Map
South Coast East Sustrans Cycle Map

Two new cycle guides: LEJOG and the Cotswolds

Land’s End to John o’Groats on the National Cycle Network from Sustrans finally brings a route that links long-distance Sustrans cycle routes together to make up the iconic LEJOG route.

Click here for more information: Land’s End to John o’Groats on the National Cycle Network

And we have also added the lovely Cycling in the Cotswolds from Cicerone. Team it up with the OS Tour map or the Sustrans pocket maps for a great combination.

Cycling in the Cotswolds Land's End to John O'Groats on the National Cycle Network

New cycle trail to reconnect Lake District

New cycle trail to reconnect Lake District

The Lake District National Park have finished a cycle track that will re-connect North and South Lake District after the December 2015 floods. The road was washed away between Grasmere and Keswick close to Thirlmere. While the road has not been rebuilt yet, there is a brand new and really excellent cycle lane above the road.

More information on the National Park website:

http://www.lakedistrict.gov.uk/aboutus/news/news-pages/new-cycle-trail-reconnects-the-heart-of-the-lake-district

 

UK Cycle Route Planner – new edition

UK Cycle Route Planner – new edition

There is a brand new edition of the UK Cycle Route Planner from Excellent Books. Updated, with new maps, it is a great way to plan long-distance cycle routes in the UK using Sustrans and other bike trails.

UK Cycle Route Planner - new edition

Third edition features include:
* Sustrans National Cycle Network route numbers shown, corresponding with route signage on the ground
* Attractions (stately homes, country parks, museums etc) on or near suggested routes
* New clearer route design

Other routes include regional routes such as county cycle ways and those National Trails on which bikes are allowed such as the Pennine Bridleway and the Ridgeway. Many hundreds of miles of minor road routes are also shown and links to signed cross-channel routes such as the Avenue Verte (London-Paris) are shown so that long distance route planning is also made easy.

Click on the link here to get more information: UK Cycle Route Planner

You can read reviews by clicking below:

FionaOutdoors

SevenDayCyclist

New C2C coast to coast cycle route website

New C2C coast to coast cycle route website

New C2C coast to coast cycle route website

Mike Carden, with Richard Peace, the author of The Ultimate Guide to the C2C, is helping to run a new website http://c2c-cycle.com/ which has news on parts of the route open or closed as a result of the 2015 floods or forestry work.

Up to date information is also added to Twitter and to Facebook.

Please share links to the site and on social media, particularly important just now, with some riders thinking that the C2C route might be closed after the December 2015 floods. Parts are closed, but there are alternatives, and the website shows where they are.

C2C route alternatives

 

 

Brilliant Birmingham Greenways map

We have in stock the Birmingham Greenways map, an excellent addition. It shows in full colour and great detail the cycle routes in and around Birmingham and the Black Country, using canal towpaths, riverside paths, parks etc.

Highly recommended.

It is designed by Roy Watson, who described it to me as a ‘labour of love’ – and you can see that from all the detail, not just of the maps but of the history of the destinations and the photography.

You can find the map in our shop by clicking here. There you will also see more detail on the content – the canals, the parks etc.

Birmingham Greenways map Birmingham Greenways map area covered Birmingham Greenways map detail

The best cycle route to Ardrossan from Inverness

Some hints on a route through western Scotland that sounds very, very good – from John A in Ardrossan:

The best cycle route to Ardrossan from Inverness

Take the A862, then hang a left on to the A833, that comes out at Drumnadrochit, halfway down Loch Ness. This avoids the very busy A82. Then link up with a trail at Strone to Invermoriston & join the Great Glen there. This off road route will take you all the way to Fort William, avoiding the manic A82 & possible road rage.

In Fort William there’s a new Travel Lodge, with Brewers Fayre below, superb value. From Fort William head south on the A82 for around 14 miles, then take the A828 to North Connel, then A85 to Oban, so you only suffer The A82 for 14 miles.

From Oban head south on the A816 & I recommend booking ahead at the Kilmartin Hotel, very friendly & good value. From Kilmartin it’s only 50 miles to Ardrossan via Arran, 2 ferries, 1 from Claonaig to Lochranza & the other from Brodick to Ardrossan, hey presto, great trip.

Distance for this route is around 200 miles of breath taking scenery, well worth the effort.

Hope this info can be of benefit to fellow cyclists – enjoy!

John, Ardrossan