If you’re planning on going on a staycation in the Lake District, you should definitely consider bringing your bike.
With challenging off-road tracks and man-made trails, there are routes to suit all abilities and ages.
But before you pack your bags, here’s everything you need to know about cycling in the Lake District.
Things to consider
The first piece of advice (if you will), is to fully understand your child or loved one’s cycling ability. While this may sound rather patronising, the truth is, cycling five miles uphill in the Lake District can feel like the equivalent of doing the same on a flat for 20 miles.
With hills comes descents as well. So always stay close to your child or loved one so you can safely guide them down. For extra peace of mind, it might be worth considering shopping for new cycling body armour and pads.
The weather in the Lake District changes very quickly as well, with it raining for around 200 days a year. You can find a lightweight waterproof here.
Best places to cycle in the Lake District
The Lake District has a variety of different cycling routes. However, if you choose one that is too challenging for you or other cyclists, it really could end up being an uphill struggle.
If you’re taking a little one or a relatively new cyclist on your staycation, the Western Shore of Windermere is a good starting point as it’s only a nine-mile round trip and is a traffic free cycle path.
You’ll need to take the Windermere Bike Boat across the lake from east to west before starting your traffic-free cycling adventure. Take in the sights, have a picnic and end up near Wray Castle.
The next step up is Grizedale Forest. The beauty of this woodland route is that you can cycle anything from two to over 14 miles, depending on how brave you are feeling.
If you have children, start from Moor Top car park and follow the two-mile trail past Goosy Foot tarn or the three to seven-mile Mushroom Trails, where you can partake in a wooden mushroom hunt.
Alternatively, the 10.5-mile Hawshead Moor cycling route is an option if you can handle hilly trails and a few moans along the way!
However, some of the most iconic cycling routes are in Staveley including Nan Bield, Garburn and Gatescarth. But you should only try these ones if you have been cycling for a while and have plenty of time to rest for the remainder of your staycation!
The carrot on this cycling route is the remarkable views. So if you can handle the achy legs, go for it!
Before you set off, don’t forget to kit yourself out with the latest cycling accessories and a new bike (if needed). On hotter days, you should also plan to take plenty of water as well to keep yourself hydrated. Unfortunately, you won’t stumble upon loads of cafes, so do as the Scouts do – be prepared!
For more information on cycling gear, you may find our previous blog useful: ‘When should you replace your cycling equipment?’