Glendaterra & Lonscale Crags Mountain Bike Route
This is a fairly easy route by Lake District standards and yet still manages to give you a true feeling of remoteness in parts. It has one particularly technical section around the flank of Lonscale Fell, with a tasty looking drop off one side.
This route is OK for beginners, although you may be pushing around the Lonscale Fell area, but it's also a good route if you're more advanced but are looking for a shorter ride, as it squeezes some great terrain into a relatively short distance.
The route itself begins in Keswick, and starts off on the old railway route to Threlkeld. It then climbs onto the flanks of Blease Fell and follows the contours before crossing Glenderaterra Beck and returns to Keswick via the Alps-like track around Lonscale Fell.
The start of this route is in Keswick, on the old railway line. To find the railway path from the centre of town head between Greg's Bakery and Keswick Lodge then turn immediately left onto Station Road. Cross the River Greta, and go past the Keswick Museum and Art Gallery. Carry on past the leisure pool and you will find yourself at the former railway station.
Turn right onto the former railway and follow this popular path for about 4km (3mi) as it crosses and re-crosses over the river, until you reach the A66 just to the south of Threlkeld. Follow the A66 for a short distance to the junction on the left, signposted Threlkeld, and take this turn. Stay on this road into the centre of Threlkeld and turn left onto Blease Road, signposted 'leading to Blencathra'.
Follow this road to where the road forks at the Blencathra Centre, then take the right fork. Go through the car park and the trail begins to climb onto the banks of Blease Fell. After about 2km (1.5mi) the track begins to descend again, and crosses Glenderaterra Beck. Cross the beck and climb the opposite side until you reach a T-junction with the Cumbria Way. Turn left here.
Follow the Cumbria Way from this point, on what is an absolute blast of a bridleway. At first its singletrack, but soon replaced by rocky technical riding, and as you round Lonscale Fell you will reach Lonscale Crags, which is an exciting section with a drop-off on one side to add to the adrenalin.
Once round here you will find yourself on a much smoother track descending the fell. Keep to this path to the gate at the bottom. Go through the gate and continue to the car park. Turn right into the car park then immediately left, still on the Cumbria Way. Enjoy this lovely descent around Mallen Dodd all the way back to Keswick.
Points of Interest
For me the scenery on a route is one of the major reasons for riding it. For this reason most if not all of our routes will be listed here in the scenic section.
Singletrack is what most of us mountain bikers wish for on a ride, which is a good thing, because most routes out there feature singletrack.