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Going to the lakes

SupernovadarrenSupernovadarren Posts: 4
edited February 2013 in Routes
I'm off to the Lake District in September for a wedding and while the mrs is off doing people's hair I have some time to kill. So should I go to Whinlatter or Grizedale. I've never been to a trail centre before but I am pretty proficient on a bike, which by the way is a Lappiere X Control with 120mm forks and 100mm shock


  • thistle_thistle_ Posts: 6,978
    Where are you staying?

    A friend and I camped near Keswick and rode up to Whinlatter for the day (the pass isn't that steep and there's a great bridleway descent back down). You can easily do all the routes at Whinlatter in a day. I didn't enjoy the north loop, although it was pi$$ing it down all the way around. The south loop and the blue route were good.

    Grizedale isn't bad, looks like it needs some serious TLC in places and to be fair they were rebuilding some sections when we went (the bits they had just rebuilt were tricky but really good). Quite a bit of fireroad but I thought the singletrack made up for it by the end. Parking was expensive at the main trail head, especially for a short route and the final descent is a bit rubbish as you have to get off and walk through gates with your bike.

    There's a lot of natural routes to ride up that way too, not tried any yet but have seen photos from friends' trips.
  • Thanks for that as I live in Swindon I imagine that either would be awesome compared to what I'm used to. Not sure about the natural riding I'm not great at reading a map and if I'm late back for the wedding I'll be right in it ha ha ha
  • davewalshdavewalsh Posts: 587
    I've ridden both and would choose Whinlatter every time, I just find the riding there much more rewarding and the final descents on the north and south loops are far superior to anything on the NFT at Grizedale, which I thought was a bit underwhelming, however I haven't ridden the new black descent at Grizedale.

    That said, there's some amazing natural riding in Grizedale, however if your not great with a map and on a deadline, I'd stick with Whinlatter.
  • Ridden both and IMO whinlatter is much better and also it is almost impossible to get lost in whinlatter...

    Also Grizedale has loads of fire road compared to Whinlatter as thistle said.

    But tbh you will have a great time wherever you go. Another ride I have always wanted to do was to ride down hellvelyn, but that may be rather interesting for you with only 120mm and 100mm of travel!
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  • GazlarGazlar Posts: 8,084
    Went last year and stayed in a hostel in Keswick, basic, but ok for us. Keswick did make a good base for whinlatter, but I recommend driving up to the trail head, its a decent road climb to the start.

    We rode both and while I enjoyed grizedale, I enjoyed whinlatter more, even the blue trail is excellent fun.

    The pubs and one club in Keswick are pretty good too afterwards
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  • styxdstyxd Posts: 3,234
    In termas of just the trail centres, the Whinlatter one is better. But all the bridlways and singletrack in and around Grizedale is far better than either trailcentre.
  • Chris`IChris`I Posts: 206
    Definitely Whinlatter given your circumstances. To be able to turn up and ride some great trails its far better than NFT. It does depend on where in the Lakes you are staying though as both trail centres are quite far apart. Remember you dont have motorways or even major A-roads like in Swindon, so even if Google says it will only take 40mins, it will be closer to an hour, more if there are caravans about ;)
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  • Yeah I'd go for whinlatter every time as well. I've only riden grizedale once, it had very little flow, seemed like little bits of singletrack joined up with lots of fireroad.

    There is a lovely descent down the back of grizedale pike that drops you right back into the south side carpark. it can be accessed from the top of the south loop at whinlatter. pm me if you want more details.
  • Myster101Myster101 Posts: 856
    I'd go for Whinlatter as well. Just drive up and do all 3 trails, you'll love it (cafe isn't bad either). Red North is the most fun for me.
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  • Dave_LeeDave_Lee Posts: 17
    Just did Winlatter last week I have to admit I enjoyed the South loop better but it was the first trail that I had done. It has a good setup there including a good bike shop and cafe.
  • YIManYIMan Posts: 576
    Definitely Whinlatter.

    You can ride right up from the bottom on forest tracks from Thornthwaite.
  • I did Whinlatter for the first time this year, loved it. Did both loops and the blue.
  • IhateDNSIhateDNS Posts: 380
    I posted last week asking best place to go out of the two.
    I did NFT Grizedale in 1.5 not flying round. I did a second lap
    a third would be bit dullish.

    Hope to look at Whinlatter sometime this week.

    edit: didn't get to ride Whinlatter :(
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  • I've ridden Whinlatter, Gisburn are more interesting than Grizedale (which I still quite like).

    I'm going up there for a week in May so should have a load more photos and route maps.
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