Sty Head and Stake Pass

A very difficult route for expert riders used to big mountain riding, including two massive hike-a-bike climbs and two steep, technical and rocky descents will delight those who are up to the challenge.

Mountain Biking Extreme

Distance
33 km
Ascent
1.2 km
Descent
1.2 km
Low Point
89 m
High Point
724 m
Gradient
21˚
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Sty Head and Stake Pass Map

Description

From the parking area near the Old Dungeon Ghyll in Langdale, ride out on the rough track along Mickleden Beck to the head of the valley. Once across the footbridge, get your bike comfortable on your back as it'll be there for a while. Climb up the steep, stepped, rocky path leading up Rossett Ghyll, enjoying seeing the faces of bemused walkers. A short technical descent leads to Angle Tarn before another series of steep ups and downs heading towards Sty Head. The scenery here is incredible, with Bowfell, Esk Pike, Great End and Great Gable dominating the high skyline. After a frustratingly awkward section of stream crossings and jumbled rocks, the descent to Seathwaite via Stockley Bridge ranks as one of the best in the Lakes for those competent enough to ride it. Steep rock steps and slabs, tight corners - simply fantastic. A pleasant road section to Rosthwaite leads to a lovely bridleway following Langstrath Beck up to the killer climb of Stake Pass. Once again it's bike-on-the-back time to the top, but then a great snaking rocky and technical singletrack descent back to the ride out down Mickleden Beck back to Langdale.

Difficulty

Extreme

Very steep, difficult, narrow singletrack with widely variable and unpredictable trail conditions. Unavoidable obstacles could be 15in/38cm tall or greater, and unavoidable obstacles with serious consequences are likely to be present. Obstacles could include big rocks, difficult root sections, drops, jumps, sharp switchbacks, and more. Ideal for expert-level riders.

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