Ambleside & Little Langdale

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Ambleside LA22, UK

A medium-difficulty route in the heart of the Lake District with enough technical riding to keep it interesting and some stunning scenery along the way.

We start in Ambleside and initially head south, keeping to the west of Windermere before veering right and heading west to Hawkshead. The route then takes you across the rocky crags of Furness Fells into Little Langdale.

Then, passing Elterwater and traversing Loughrigg Terrace, you'll be spat out on the banks of Rydal Water ready for the short blast back to Ambleside.

The start of this route is just outside of Ambleside, park up along 'Under Loughrigg' road to the west of the town. Locate the bridleway heading west, as shown on the map. Follow this track as it climbs onto Loughrigg Fell. After a couple of kilometers you will reach a road, turn right and then, shortly after crossing a bridge, left onto another minor road. This will take you to Skelwith Bridge.

At Skelwith Bridge, cross over the River Brathay and follow the main A593 road around to the right. Follow the road for about 1km until you reach a gate on the left just before a white house and with a wooden bridleway sign post. Take this gate and climb through the field on to Park Fell.

After about 1.5km (1mi) of climbing the trail begins to descend, and after another half a km, reaches a t-junction with a well defined trail. Take a right here and continue all the way to the A593. Once there cross the road and head straight on up the minor road ahead, the one with a national trust signpost. Follow to Hodge Close and, once there, ignore the obvious track on the left and head straight on, descending now to High Tiberthwaite.

At High Tiberthwaite you will meet another road. Instead of taking this, turn right (almost doubling back on yourself) and follow to the quarry overlooking Little Langdale Tarn. Take a right and folow the obvoius track to Little Langdale.

Turn left onto the road and into the village and after a short while take the road on the right signposted 'unsuitable for motor vehicles'. On reaching the second gate, go through it and take the faint track leading into the woods. Take this track and climb to the top, then enjoy the descent. Cross the road and ride through the quarry to Great Langdale Beck. Cross the bridge and turn left onto the road. Shortly after this take a right after the bus stop in the village of Chapel Stile. Turn right again at the church.

Follow the road for about 1km until a left junction and take this junction. Climb the road to High Close YHA. Then descend again, taking the next bridleway on your right for Loughrigg Terrace. The views in this section, across Grasmere are simply breathtaking. Follow the bridleway right down to the banks of Rydal Water and on to the woods beyond. Go through the woods and you'll reach a road at the other side. Take a right onto this road and follow all the way back to the start near Ambleside.

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