North Lakes Mountains

Spell it like you say it

Our Toughest And Most Beautiful Half-Day Ride

Quieter, more beautiful and with better road surfaces; the North Lakes passes are so much more pleasant to ride than Hardknott and Wrynose, yet almost as tough (more rideable).

A 75km Half Day ride of 4 passes, 3 lakes and a cafe break at a Mountain Forest Park.

75km might not sound much to experienced riders but they are ‘value for money kilometres’. Tough, technical and so stunning you’ll want to stop to take photos the whole way (no problem, just shout!).

Pace and Terrain

We’ll aim to average around 12.5mph/20kph and climb 4 mountain passes and several smaller hills in between for a total of 1500m climbing.

New Years Eve 2019 North Lakes Mountains reccie

How Fit Do I Need To Be?

To get around this route in half a day, you’ll really need to be more cyclist than anything else. My rule of thumb is that you need to be regularly riding at least the same number of hours each week as the ride itself takes, so 4hrs weekly in this case. This is a tough route, so if you would consider this a big challenge, check the number of teeth on the biggest sprocket on your back wheel is the same or more than the number on the smallest chainring at the cranks. For example, 34 at the front and 36 at the back would be ideal.

If you’re still riddled with doubt about keeping up, get a few cycling friends together and hire me to guide you on this ride at a pace you know you’ll be happy with. Just hit the Bespoke Rides button for more information and to book.

Where to meet and parking

North Lakes Mountains starts and finish at the Filling Station cafe on the edge of Keswick CA12 5PR. It’s really easy to find. If arriving by car, leave the A66 Keswick Bypass at the A591 roundabout, heading for Keswick (Crossthwaite Rd). The Filling Station cafe is 100m on your left, with free roadside parking opposite the cafe.

This is a popular location for people hiking Skiddaw and the roadside spaces can fill up quickly, so do consider arriving in time for a leisurely coffee (they open at 9am) or head back towards the A66 roundabout, as there are a few spaces on the left just a few metres short of it. If you’re out of luck, head another 100m past the cafe to find signs for parking at the Rugby Club. You’ll need £3 to park all day (coins only).

‘North Lakes Mountains Risk Assessment –

Almost the whole North Lakes Mountains route is ridden on narrow roads. They are generally in a good state of repair so the odd pot hole can come as a surprise. Keep alert.

Climbs and descents are extremely steep, touching 25% in several places. Don’t weave on the way up or take your hands off the bars on the way down. Ensure you bike as a whole and brakes especially are in good condition.

Traffic on the hardest climb Honister Pass and down into Buttermere valley can appear busy on a nice day but it seems busier than it is because vehicles are very slow moving on such narrow and steep roads. Do not be tempted to overtake or race each other!!

This route is mountainous. The weather and visibility can be poor and water running across the roads often deposits small stones and gravel. As we pass farms, slow down in case of mud on the road.

You must wear a helmet approved for cycling, bring front and rear lights if the light is poor or likely to become poor and you must have read, understand and accept these safety points in order to join us.

Prices and Bookings

TBC, watch this space or our Facebook page Cycle the Lakes