- The outstanding beauty of the Yorkshire Dales National Park and Forest of Bowland
- Fleet Moss, Malham Cove, Scaleber Force Waterfall and Bowland Knotts
- Locally brewed beers from the world-famous Black Sheep & Theakston breweries of Masham
- Wensleydale’s finest cheese and Yorkshire Pudding as God intended it!
This was my second holiday with Saddle Skedaddle and know the high standards. Always have been extremely pleased with all aspects of the holiday. The guides especially always make it a lovely experience.
Those wishing to travel by train can be picked up from Skipton train station and should discuss timetables with the office before booking tickets to ensure that arrival times coincide with our pick-up and transfer schedules. The Skedaddle team will be on hand at our accommodation in Malham from late afternoon to meet those choosing to make their own way by car. Anyone planning to arrive earlier on Friday should let us know in advance as we may be able to arrange for an early check-in.
Over dinner, the team will conduct an informal briefing and talk through the program for the weekend before retiring for the evening.
- Meals: Breakfast, lunch
- Ascent: 1750 Metres Approx.
Most routes out of Malham involve a bit of a climb and this morning, as we rise up towards Malham Tarn, is no exception. The steepest section comes early but it is mercifully short and it isn’t long before we‘re able to catch our breath as the pretty little lake comes into view.
As we make the most of the brief respite, a second, shorter, but similarly sharp and shocking little climb follows, before we drop rapidly into the village of Arncliffe nestling in the next valley. From here we roll along a much gentler terrain for the next 15 miles or so until the hamlet of Beckermonds marks the start of the day’s biggest challenge, the infamous Fleet Moss. The road, which skirts the eastern flanks of Dodd Fell Hill, is the highest road in the county of Yorkshire and a natural watershed separating the valleys of Wharfedale and Wensleydale.
The road drops sharply down into the beautiful market town of Hawes, the centre of Wensleydale’s cheese production, where we change direction and start our return journey which takes us through Ribblesdale. One last climb comes late in the day as the road rises back up to Malham Tarn before dropping down again and finally delivering us back to base via the dramatic Malham Cove.
- Meals: Breakfast, lunch
- Ascent: 1500 Metres Approx.
As we’ll no doubt be expecting by now, it isn’t long before the road starts pointing upwards as it heads towards Settle, passing the beautiful Scaleber Force Waterfall along the way.
From Settle we head north at first and then we move to the west, eventually leaving the Dales National Park to take an excursion into the Forest of Bowland. A designated Area of Natural Beauty, the Forest of Bowland is, ironically, notable for its relative lack of trees and is more accurately described as a heather moorland with the title “forest” used in the traditional context of a “royal hunting ground“.
Trees or no trees, the region is very beautiful and features some lovely riding. Much of our time here is spent climbing up to the viewpoint of Bowland Knotts from where we can enjoy magnificent vistas of the Dales, Yorkshire’s Three Peaks and, on clearer days, the fells and mountains of the Lake District.
We close the loop by picking our way back to Malham via a network of quiet lanes and rural villages, arriving in time to freshen up and change out of our Lycra for homeward journeys.
Although the Dales are famous for their generally rolling hills, our route includes a number of steep (occasionally very steep!) stages. Whilst testing both climbing and descending skills, these steep sections are, thankfully, usually very short.
Road surfaces are generally good, however, as is the case in all rural regions, it is not uncommon to encounter occasional gravelly sections and potholes in some areas. Similarly, cattle grids, wandering sheep and other livestock are frequent features. Good bike handling skills and a reasonable level of fitness are required.
For the most part, small, quiet country lanes have been chosen however we do occasionally venture onto larger busier roads. Traffic levels are generally low but can increase during holiday periods.
Road Cycling Grade
Moderate to Challenging. For more regular riders who like to push themselves a little from time to time. Not extreme but certainly challenging on occasions with some good climbing opportunities. Distances between 80-120km per day.
Our grading guidelines have been carefully created based on our many years of cycling experience, as well as customer feedback from our trips. Of course, if you're still struggling to figure out where you fit on the scale, do feel free to give us a quick call and we'll be more than happy to help!
For more information about our grading system click here.
Is this suitable for you?
You’re an enthusiast. Road cycling is probably your main hobby and you ride regularly at weekends, staying on the bike for much of the day. You’re in pretty good shape, and you might also participate in cylo-sportive events. You also love a challenge and are looking for a tour with some good climbing, preferably with an opportunity to tick off some famous Tour de France cols, or the like. You’re a competent descender, and you’re not afraid of speed, but you ride safely and within your limits at all times. You understand road etiquette and you’re comfortable riding in a bunch. You might even take a stint at the front of the pack if the need arises.
Dates & Prices
Are you keen to only travel with your family or friends? Struggling to find the right date? Well, we can organise a private departure for this tour and tailor aspects to suit your group's specific needs. Contact our friendly team and we'll help you turn your dream into reality.
A) Accommodation (shared twin / double en-suite rooms)
B) Meals as per the itinerary (B=Breakfast, L=Lunch, D=Dinner)
C) Full tour service, including Skedaddle guides
D) Unless stated, at least one leader qualified in First Aid
E) Support vehicle
F) Transfer on scheduled arrival day from Skipton train station
G) Transfer on scheduled departure day to Skipton train station
What's not Included
A) Bike hire (available if required)
B) Train tickets and charges for travelling with your bike (if applicable)
C) Meals not stated in the itinerary
D) Single room (available if required)
E) Travel insurance
F) Personal clothing and equipment
G) Personal expenditure (souvenirs, bar bills, hotel facilities etc)
H) Entrance fees to museums and other attractions en route
I) Transfers on days other than the scheduled arrival / departure days
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Yvonne, BuckinghamshireSkedaddle never disappoint...
This was my second holiday with Saddle Skedaddle and know the high standards. Always have been extremely pleased with all aspects of the holiday. The guides especially always make it a lovely experience. The hotel and location were extremely good.
Joanna, BedfordshireReally pleased! I could just focus on the riding...
First time with Saddle Skedaddle and really pleased with all aspects of the trip.
Pre-trip info and contact were excellent. The guides were brilliant – very happy for them to be the ‘adults’ so I could just focus on the riding. Great local knowledge, enthusiasm for cycling and force aisle the riders to get the most out of the trip.
Both guides were brilliant, friendly and supportive but also very much in charge and clear about safety etc. Ride briefings were clear and well-communicated. All aspects really well supported – rider well-being, logistics and mechanical issues. Covid safety measures were clear but unobtrusive and did not impact negatively on the experience.
Marcia, LondonVery good...
The guides we very professional and took good care of us.