About the Thursday ride (4th March 2010)

A short and challenging ride from Coniston.

I’m going to un-officially call it the biketreks Coniston classic. It can be done in about two hours, or 90 minutes if you’re quick.
Start from the (former) Tourist Information Centre car park in the centre of Coniston. Bear left at the exit and cross the bridge. Turn left to a short road climb. On the right there’s a Sustrans sign (part of route 37, I think). Follow this undulating path alongside the main road, ignore the first minor road to the left, and take the second.
More road climbing to the gate on the right. Follow this well-defined trail, turning right at the signpost to Hodge Close.
When the route meets the road, climb up and take the right fork. A short fast descent leads towards the main road. Almost at the road, there’s a gate on the right leading in to a wooded area. The Ordnance Survey mark it as being to the east of Little Fell. Locally it is called “The Rollercoaster”. Turn right when you meet the stone wall (or crash in to the wall like someone obviously has done in the past), cross the river and pick your way to the minor road. Turn right at the minor road back towards the main road.
Right turn again, and follow the main road (a-hem!) south. There’s a car park on the left, through and up a steep shale-covered track up to the Tarn Hows road.
Left turn and more climbing to the first car park you find on the right. At the back of the car park, there’s a gate leading to a permissive route past Hill Fell downhill all the way to the B5285. Known locally as “The Golden Mile”, it’s a lot of fun.
On the way down, turn right, at the next fork straight ahead.
To complete, follow the B-road back in to Coniston.
The GPS data from the ride says the ride is about 10 miles (15.9km) long, and you pack in 490 metres of climbing and descent.

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