Whinlatter Forest Park Mountain Bike Trail Centre , England

Whinlatter Forest Park Mountain Bike Trail Centre , England

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Trails

Type of Centre/Base
Trail Grades
  • Blue (Moderate)
  • Red (Difficult)
Type of Trail(s)
Trail Distance(s)

Location

Contact Number
Country
County/State
Trail, Centre or Base
Address
Whinlatter Forest Park, Whinlatter Pass, Braithwaite, CA12 5TW
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Whinlatter Forest Park mountain bike trail centre near Keswick in Cumbria in the Lake District has two purpose-built mountain bike trails: the red Altura trail and the blue Quercus trail.

Whinlatter Forest Park rises to 790 metres above sea level and is England's only mountain forest so the views of the Lake District and into Scotland as you ride are pretty spectacular. 

There is always a level of new development in hand.

The Altura Trail

  • The Altura trail is graded red and is 19 kilometres long (including 15 kilometres of new singletrack).  The trail has been built for experienced riders with good off-road skills and a reasonable level of fitness.
  • It has challenging singletrack sections and popular features like berms, jumps, rock gardens, skinnies, corkscrews and table tops. There are also great views of Derwentwater, Bassenthwaite and the surrounding fells.
  • It is split into a North Loop and a South Loop and part of the benefit of Whinlatter is that you can conveniently mix and match sections e.g. do the blue Quercus then the Altura South Loop for variety. 

The Quercus Trail

  • The Quercus trail has a 7.5km option and a shorter 3.5 km option. It consists of flowing single track with gentle berms, rolling jumps and wide gradual climbs with technical features. The trail starts downhill with sweeping intricate bends, then climbs up and bends and twists its way until riders come face to face with the Big Wall, a double banked bend within the forest. After climbing up through oak woodland, the trail crosses a bridge and into the darker conifer forest. The trail finishes with the hollow sound of a raised boardwalk over a bog and through the forest.

Trail Map

  • You can find a copy of the trail map here

History

  • The trails were built by trail builders Clixbys with funding support from the North West Regional Development Agency who not only helped fund the trail but also the redevelopment of the car park at the Visitor Centre.  
  • The Altura is the longest purpose-built mountain bike trail in the Lake District and took nine months to build. It was largely constructed using material that had been sourced from the forest. 
  • The Quercus Trail is named after the Latin for Oak (Quercus Petraea) because the furthest loop of the trail runs through the Masmill Oak Woodland.

Cycling Clubs and Groups

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First ever ride at Whinlatter

Location

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User reviews

24 reviews

 
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1 star
 
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Overall rating 
 
4.27
 
4.50  (24)
 
4.13  (24)
 
4.05  (24)
 
4.30  (24)
 
4.48  (24)
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Ratings (the higher the better)
Grin Factor
Level of fun had, or to be had
Trail Variety
Variety of specific trail or overall trail centre. Mix of obstacles, berms, jumps, drops, shore etc.
Skills Development
Did it develop or push your skills and leave you with more to come back and learn
Trail Quality
Are the trails well built /maintained using sustainable techniques?
Facilities
From cafe post ride grub to bike wash. Did it meet your expectations?
User Review
Comments
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Overall rating 
 
4.20
Grin Factor 
 
5.00
Trail Variety 
 
3.00
Skills Development 
 
4.00
Trail Quality  
 
5.00
Facilities 
 
4.00

Some of the best downhill I've done. I always say it's similar to glentress for the trails. You go up then come down with a smile. Usually busy when I've been. The variety of trails is a bit lacking but still a great place for a ride.

User Review

Good Points
Superb downhill
Great views of the lakes
Bad Points
Not much variety
Usually very busy
Would you recommend?
Yes
Was this review helpful to you? 
Overall rating 
 
4.54
Grin Factor 
 
5.00
Trail Variety 
 
4.00
Skills Development 
 
4.00
Trail Quality  
 
5.00
Facilities 
 
5.00

Whinlatter Altura red

Haven't tried blue route but wife and kids love it.

User Review

Good Points
North and south loops start from trail centre so can have a break between them. Both similar in being climb to top via fire road and singletrack then descend in one go. Both brilliant fun, well made and have jaw dropping views. About 5 miles long each, climbs are hard enough. Good cafe and bike shop.
Bad Points
None really.
Would you recommend?
Yes
Was this review helpful to you? 
Overall rating 
 
4.81
Grin Factor 
 
5.00
Trail Variety 
 
5.00
Skills Development 
 
5.00
Trail Quality  
 
4.00
Facilities 
 
5.00

Great trail centre

All good - go there and enjoy :)

User Review

Good Points
Great variety of features on the trails - a real mix of rocky/foresty/open hillside/jumps/tough climbs/the whole lot. Plenty of height in gained, so a good workout and plenty of fun in the descents. Good choice of trails - Blue, north & south Red loop and any combination of them (incl. the local favourite, the 'Purple': most of the Blue, followed by the south Red loop). Awesome views, great cafe and Cyclewise bike shop right next to the car park. Enjoy.
Bad Points
Hmm trail always has puddles on it, so your feet are going to get wet, even in dry weather, but hey, it's called the Lake District for a reason. Car parking isn't cheap, but the money goes back into the facilities and you don't pay anything to ride the trails, so suck it up ;)
Would you recommend?
Yes
Was this review helpful to you? 
Overall rating 
 
4.31
Grin Factor 
 
4.00
Trail Variety 
 
4.00
Skills Development 
 
4.00
Trail Quality  
 
5.00
Facilities 
 
5.00

A grand day out

Fun for all levels of mountainbiker

User Review

Good Points
This is one of the best trail centres in the England. The two loops that make up the red are both very manageable in terms of distance and both reward you with a pretty satisfying descent. The trails are well maintained and feature a good amount of variety, especially considering that they are essentially surfaced trails designed to be ridden year round. The views from the top are pretty epic too. The cafe is great and it's a pleasure to sit out on the decking on a sunny day, enjoying the view over the forest with a coffee and a cake. The blue trail is also really enjoyable. Having dragged my S.O. into this sport, she rates it as a very good trail. I have only used the bike shop once. Having lost a brake bolt, they sorted me out with a new one for free. Can't really ask for more than that.
Bad Points
It's been said by others, but parking is steep. If you are going up with a few in a vehicle then it's ok I guess, and if some of that money finds its way to the trails then I am happy.
Would you recommend?
Yes
Was this review helpful to you? 
(Updated: November 06, 2016)
Overall rating 
 
4.35
Grin Factor 
 
5.00
Trail Variety 
 
4.00
Skills Development 
 
4.00
Trail Quality  
 
4.00
Facilities 
 
5.00

The views from the tops of the 2 red routes are really stunning and well worth the climbs; the trail is also good as it is basically 2 distinct and seperate trails; both start from the car park but one goes north and the other south,The North loop has a fair amount of forest road on the way to top, but has excellent varied ride from there, combining tricky rock n roots with some flowing trail and ending in a spectacular zig zag down very steep slope back to car park.the Southern loop is similar length-6 miles-with less road uphill and great n varied downhill; starts off very rocky, then rocky but flowing, and then a fantastic flowing n jumping section that has big  big grin factor 

User Review

Good Points
views from the tops are absolutely stunning
good variety of trail-free flowing,rocky,rooty
Southern loop has biggest grin factor but easier; northern loop more varied and trickier
very good facilities
Bad Points
can get crowded in car park but never seems crowded on trail
£8 to park all day but then worth it and it goes on maintaining the trails
Would you recommend?
Yes
Was this review helpful to you? 
Overall rating 
 
4.10
Grin Factor 
 
4.00
Trail Variety 
 
4.00
Skills Development 
 
3.50
Trail Quality  
 
4.50
Facilities 
 
5.00

Good variety for most skill levels and hence good for families with different abilities.

User Review

Good Points
Views from the top of the red trails.
Bad Points
No skills area
Would you recommend?
Yes
Was this review helpful to you? 
Overall rating 
 
4.21
Grin Factor 
 
4.50
Trail Variety 
 
4.50
Skills Development 
 
3.50
Trail Quality  
 
4.50
Facilities 
 
4.00

Really nice centre all round, a bit of a slog up the north red loop, but well worth it for the downhill, have been there on a number of occasions now, and always found the trails to be well kept, and exciting.

User Review

Good Points
The two reds are fantastic fun, like the getting the up out of the way for a lot of downhill setup.
Blue is good for beginners, and seems well maintained.
All loops have a nice flow to them, although nothing too technical, they are great fun.
Bad Points
No skills area, which would be nice
Parking is expensive
Would you recommend?
Yes
Was this review helpful to you? 
Overall rating 
 
4.66
Grin Factor 
 
4.50
Trail Variety 
 
4.50
Skills Development 
 
4.50
Trail Quality  
 
5.00
Facilities 
 
5.00

Whinlatter

User Review

Good Points
Great trails, plenty of variety, well maintained and spectacular views. Plenty of challenging sections and some fast downhill sections.... Just remember you need to go up to come down!
Good facilities, toilets, café and a quality bike shop...
Bad Points
A dedicated downhill section would be good, nothing too extreme just a quick blast with some jumps..
Would you recommend?
Yes
Was this review helpful to you? 
Overall rating 
 
3.81
Grin Factor 
 
4.50
Trail Variety 
 
5.00
Skills Development 
 
3.00
Trail Quality  
 
3.00
Facilities 
 
3.00

Good feeling of the lakes big hills big views

just get out and ride

User Review

Good Points
local loop for me so go there quite a bit, most trails well kept and always developing,new section on south loop "a dog called sue" which cuts out a bit of fire road climbing but think the top south could do with a with a bit of love ( I went otb when my front wheel stopped dead and I didn't )
Don't dismiss the blue as a beginners trail this for me has the best bit of flowing trail in the whole forest
Bad Points
Car parking is expensive but trails are free and money goes to development
I pay 40 a year for a discovery pass which let's me park any time for as long as I want
Still see people riding without a helmet on a folding commuter bike.

The slog climb up the north red is still hard work
Would you recommend?
Yes
Was this review helpful to you? 
Overall rating 
 
3.47
Grin Factor 
 
3.50
Trail Variety 
 
3.50
Skills Development 
 
3.00
Trail Quality  
 
3.00
Facilities 
 
5.00

User Review

Good Points
Great facilities, Cyclewise are good. Decent amount of singletrack.
Bad Points
Trails lack flow compared to the Scottish centres, desperately needs more development.
Would you recommend?
Yes
Was this review helpful to you? 
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