FATMAP difficulty grade
This mountain bike route could definitely be called Loughrigg Lite in comparison to some possibilities in the area, but this wouldn’t really do justice to a superb little loop that in just 10km takes in a little of everything that’s good about Lakeland mountain biking.
It may be short but it’s definitely no pushover.
It’s basically a two-up, two-down; with the first and toughest climb coming early onto Loughrigg Fell, and the second, which is much easier, on tarmac at the halfway point.
Both the descents are full-on fun but the roller-coaster ride along Loughrigg Terrace is one of the best in the Lakes: sweet easy rolling in some places and a real rocky horror shows in others.
A word of warning: the terrace gets extremely busy with walkers so choose your day carefully or better still avoid busy periods altogether and always ride with something in reserve.
Turn right onto the road and follow it for nearly 2km to a waymarked, tarmac bridleway on the right (cattle grid).
Now climb steeply up past Brow Head Farm and out on to Loughrigg Fell.
Continue SA to the top and then stay on the main track eventually following a wall on your left.
Keep SA where another bridleway forks left through a gate and continue to a x-roads with a broad track.
Keep SA along another broad track and swing left to the road.
Turn right and cruise up past Loughrigg Tarn and then fork right.
Continue to the top, pass a small road on the left, and a footpath on the right, and then fork right onto a BW (Loughrigg Terrace and Rydal). Follow this down, passing above Grasmere and then dropping to the shores of Rydal Water – care is needed on this section as it is narrow and often very busy.
Keep ahead, over the rocks, and then stay on the main track as it climbs slightly to a gate before dropping to the car park. © Tom Hutton - UKHillwalking.com, Dec 2013