Cycling is a fantastic, all round fitness activity that can be enjoyed solo, with a friend, as a group or family. Off road, on road, cycle tracks or guided bike rides, August is the time to get out and get active in the Lake District, one of the most popular places for cycling in the UK.
Guided bikes are ideal if you’re starting out cycling but so too for family rides. Now in their fourth year Sky Ride in conjunction with British Cycling is the go to resource for leisure cycling. Choose from Ride Social’s, Guided Rides, Breeze Network for women only and larger bike events. Every day during August there are at least 2 rides scheduled in Cumbria and North Lancs. Simply visit the website where each event is listed, the route, gear required, length and booking details of which many rides are free.
Even more dates were added this year, more varied and in different locations enabling as many people of possible to join in. There have been routes for those with a more advanced level of cycling, children, families, beginners of all ages and those with a special interest in cycling an historical or literary route.
Two great events to look out for:
Wednesday 24 August – From Ambleside into the Jaws of Great Langdale. Suitable for children aged 8+ so a great one to do as a family, the route starts from Rothay Park in Ambleside finishing in the stunning Langdale Valley along quiet or off road cycle ways.
Sunday 28 August – Hawkshead – Beatrix Potter ride in partnership with the National Trust. What better way to mark and celebrate Beatrix’s Potter 150 anniversary than this circular route along the Lake Windermere western shore cycle path via Esthwaite Water and back to Hawkshead. More Sky Ride events can be found on their website here, http://www.goskyride.com/
Where to stay this August
It’s not too late to book a short break or holiday. Langdale Lake District Hotel & Spa is ideally located for attending many of the Sky Ride events during August. Choose from double or family rooms in the hotel as well as a limited amount of availability in some of the 5 star self catering lodges, apartments and cottages. Visit http://www.langdale.co.uk for more details.
Some excellent news for and about the Lake District National Park was issued earlier this month. The news is that visitor car travel around the Lake District has decreased by an estimated 7.8 million kilometres over the past 3 years, this equates to a fall in car use of 14.5%. The cynics out there may say it is down to lower visitor numbers but these have in fact increased by 2% with an increase of 7% on visitor spend whilst staying/visiting here.
Many factors have contributed to this from programmes such as GoLakes Travel with its very well recognised “Drive Less – See More” campaign to businesses and the rise in popularity of cycling not just in the Lake District but UK wide.
GoLakes Travel has helped to introduce new and extra services to aid car free travel in the Lake District. This has included opening up and updating of a number of cycle ways in the National Park such as the one opened last year enabling almost a road free route from Ambleside to Langdale. They have also instigated more routes and a better timetable for the Bike Bus services.
Windermere Lake Cruises embraced the trend for cycling and going car free 3 years ago when they launched a new Bike Boat service. The service runs from Brockhole across Lake Windermere to either Wray Castle of the new floating jetty at Bark Barn. This has proved extremely popular way of getting to the other side of Lake eliminating the need for cyclists to ride along the busy A591.
The Langdale Hotel & Spa have been firm advocates, supporters and promoters for many years now of alternative methods of travel to and from the Lake District as well as during the stay. The Langdale Hotel Lake District location lends itself extremely well to a car free or reduced car use holiday or short break. There are walks both high and low level and many cycle routes starting right from the hotel but there’s also the chance to hire a Renault Twizy electric car. Twizy travel provides quiet, low carbon travel around the Lake District and is an excellent way to experience the landscape and also two of England’s steepest roads, the passes Wrynose and Hardknott. The car may be small but it tackles England’s steepest road with ease! To book a stay at Langdale and to find out more about the Twizy’s visit http://www.langdale.co.uk