North Face Trail – Grizedale

30 09 2007

boardwalk NF trailFancy a bit of a road trip ?  Then why not try making your base the beautiful Lake District (bit of a drive but worth it), we like Keswick in the North Lakes it’s got the big mountains, the big views and loads of outdoor shops 🙂  It’s also nice and handy for some fantastic biking both natural and manmade in England & Scotland.  You’re in spitting distance the 7Stanes which boasts some of the best riding in the world.  IMHO better than all the welsh trails and well worth the trip.

This holiday we only rode the North Face Trail at Grizedale Forest and at only 10 miles long it’s not an all-day’er however it is good fun.  Manmade, rocky, technical, tight twisty with a killer singletrack uphill start with plenty of switchbacks to get you into the swing of things.  It’s signature feature is it’s boardwalks.  They’re everywhere.  Slippy in the wet but usually still rideable.  There’s the odd fallen tree trunk to have a go at if you feel so inclined (that’s a job for Rick not me!) and the views are out of this world, if you like mountains that is.

There’s a visitor centre and great bike shop right at the end of the trail and if you’ve got the energy there’s also a Go Ape where you become a chimp in the trees and work your way round 2hrs of tree hung swinging fun with zip wires aplenty to make you grin !  (there’s also a Go Ape at Bedgebury – where we’ll be going next year – if you don’t fancy the Lake District drive, go on you know you want to !).

If you fancy a drive over the border you won’t be disappointed.  You’ve got Dalbeattie, Mabie, Kirroughtree, Ae within an hr or so and all of them have fantastic riding with features such as The Slab, McMoab, The Dark Side to name but a few.

There’s also fantastic natural riding in the Lakes, take a trip to Bike Treks in Ambleside or Keswick Mountainbikes for some real local knowledge.  They even sell loads of laminated local ride guides which are fab and only cost a quid… well worth the investment. 

We’ve been returning to the area for years and still there’s loads to do and see… and did I mention the outdoor clothing shops in Keswick and Ambleside ?  If the weather’s bad that’s where we head and I always find what we want here so riding aside I’ll definiately be coming back for more, even though my most recent trip ended up being not too successful.

Give it a go, if you love mountains, fantastic views and great biking. Lisa

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