The Lake District is one of the most picturesque locations in the whole of the UK. Beautiful lakes surrounded by high mountains make for views which are simply outstanding. This particular ride into little Langdale has all those qualities. Add to that some technical descending and you have it all within a 9.5 mile loop. The only unpredictable is as ever the weather! The pictures you see on this trail were taken in one remarkable week in July.
1. Start at a little hamlet called Knipe Fold (OS3416399452) just outside Hawkshead. Car parking is by a three way junction. Head back towards Knipe Fold taking a left spur abot 50 yds past the junction where you are parked. Go up the hill past the houses. The road eventually runs out and you're on the trail. You pick up a wall on your left and if you look carefully, also on the left, you can see Tarn Hows. There is a detour to the Tarn which is well worth a view.
2. This track eventually joins a minor road after 1.8 miles, which then joins the main road between Skelwith Bridge and Coniston the A593. There is a small house on the junction. Head straight across to join another minor road up the hill through the trees.
3. After 0.4 miles you arrive at a farm on the right. Carry on straight-ahead and through the gate up a technical section. After another 0.4 miles the track drops down to another gate. Turn right and past the houses at Hodge Close. Keep going through two gates until you reach a farm at Stang End, turn left and down the tarmac hill.
4. The tarmac runs out and brings you towards the river. Turn left before reaching the river, bridge and ford, and up the hill. This track takes you through the woods for 1.2 miles to another farm at High Tilberthwaite. Go through the gate and turn into another one on the right and up.
5. Carry on up the technical ascent which levels out and then begins to point downwards. The fun starts as the trail descends towards Little Langdale (see video below!). After a total of about 1 mile, after the technical descent turn right with Little Langdale Tarn in view on the left.
6. Proceed on the well marked trail which drops down between spoil heaps and cottages (Low Hall Garth Climbing Hut). The trail levels out. Make sure you stop to see Slaters Bridge (OS3108802929) on the left. Proceed with the river on the left go through the gate and you will see the Ford and the footbridge also on the left (OS3126002959), which you came to before. Turn right but taking the left of the two options. This takes you back up the Lane and you retrace your steps from #4. home.
From Ambleside head out towards Clappersgate on the A593. After about an 0.8 miles turn right and over the bridge on to B5286 to Hawkshead. After 3 miles and 0.3 miles after Outgate take a right turn up a narrow Lane to Knipe Fold. On this twisty winding lane proceed or 0.8 miles past cottages and up left onto another Lane. Proceed for about 400 yards. You arrive at a three-way junction. Parking is there. Entrance to the trail is now behind you (where you came from!) and to the left and up the hill. There is a house on the corner of the lane to the left. It is about 50yds from the junction where you parked.
When to Bike
Provisions can be obtained at Hawkshead. Riding is all year obviously depending on local conditions. Make sure you stock up even though this is quite a short ride.