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Classic Climbs


The steep and twisting alpine style ascent of Hartside (1903' / 580m) on the western edge of theCyclist at Hartside photo by Helen Shaw North Pennines is a classic road climb. The views from the cafe back across the Eden Valley to the Lake District and across the Solway Firth can be stunning. One option is to go up from Langwathby following the C2C cycle route via Renwick (about 10.6 miles / 17km), but keep to the main A686 road all the way down via Melmerby.

Not surprisingly this section of road is popular with motor bikers and motorists so it's advisable to choose the time of your ascent accordingly and take great care on your thrilling descent.

Tan Hill

Ravenstonedale Fell photo copyright Anthea TrubyYou can climb for 11 miles from Kirkby Stephen up Tan Hill to the highest inn in England at 1,732ft, which offers well-earned refreshment. Follow the blue 20 (Walney to Wear and Whitby or W2W route) and National Route 71 signs to Hartley, then through Winton and Barras all the way to the top.    

Kirkstone Pass (west of Glenridding) and the steady climb up from Ullswater lake shore at Aira Force to Dockray form part of the Fred Whitton Challenge, a gruelling 112 mile sportive ride for charity around the Lake District. 

They're also part of the cycling course for the Helvellyn Triathlon.