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United Kingdom

Lake District - Lakes Epic

Guided Mountain Bike Tour




6 days

Prices from

$1,605 P.P.
Four days of superb mountain biking woven together to provide you with a classic slice of riding in the legendary Lake District. This is a trip for experienced riders looking for challenging yet rewarding trails in one of the UK’s premier mountain biking areas. Twin centres based in Penrith and Ambleside, this circular route has been specifically designed to ensure there are no vehicle transfers, just top-class riding each and every day!
Straight out the blocks and we start with a cracker, to introduce this day of tough climbs and technical descents. Starting out from Penrith we’ll soon pass Bougham Castle and the Roman Fort of Brocavum as we make our way to Ambleside via the legendary High Street with its panoramic views of some of England's loftiest peaks including Helvellyn and Skiddaw.
Next in the hit-list is a wonderful route around Coniston Water that includes Parkamoor Descent and the jingle-jangle slate trails of Hodge Close. 
Grizedale greets us next with its forest trails and scenic climbs around Claife Heights and Loughrigg Terrace during a day of contrasting riding and scenery.
Our final day sees us returning back to Penrith on what is the most challenging day of the trip. Highlights are numerous - Jenkins Crag and Garburn Pass ‘warm-up’ the legs, Kentmere delights with its beautiful valley, while Sadgill and Gatescarth Pass challenge us before our final descent to picturesque Haweswater.
From here we’ve a few scenic rolling miles back to Penrith via Askham Fells (with its views of the picturesque Ullswater and Lowther Castle) for a night of celebrations and tales of the trails.
If our dates don’t work for you and your friends, club or organisation do let us know and we’ll do our best to find a suitable alternative date.


  • The most diverse collection of mountain bike trails in the Lakes
  • Lots of classic rocky singletrack
  • A Lakeland Ale at the end of the day – bliss
  • High Street, Garburn Pass and so much more!
  • Amazing views of Coniston, Ullswater and Grasmere
  • Four whole days of classic Lakes mountain biking

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Day 1
Arrival - Penrith

Following your arrival at Penrith you will be shown where you can store your bike (if bringing your own) and to your room. Most people tend to arrive early evening, but if you do wish to arrive earlier in the day then do let us know.

In the evening we will be meeting as a group in a local pub, where over a drink and something to eat there will be an informal chat about the events of the weekend. For this trip we use B&Bs / small guesthouses in Penrith (2 nights) and Ambleside (3 nights) which provide us with great bases and offer a warm welcome after a day in the saddle.

Tonight is a good opportunity to get to know our MIAS (Mountain Bike Instructors Award Scheme) qualified guides who represent Skedaddle’s enthusiastic and friendly attitude to mountain biking as well as the other bikers on your weekend.

Accommodation : Penrith

Day 2
Penrith - High Street - Ambleside
27 Miles / 44 Kms Approx.
  • Meals: Breakfast, lunch
  • Ascent: 1,100 Metres Approx.

Starting off our trip in style, we head off from Penrith via Brougham Castle and we’ve a few gentle introductory miles via Askham Fell before High Street arrives at our wheels. This Roman thoroughfare is etched in Lakeland riding folklore and at a height of 828 metres, getting to its summit will certainly test our legs on this initial day.

Whilst certainly a tough climb, the views from the top are well worth the effort and from this lofty vantage point we will be able to spot some of England’s highest peaks including Helvellyn and Skiddaw.

After rolling (in a Lakes way) along the narrow trails of these higher reaches, our just reward is the superb technical descent to Ambleside that rounds off a memorable initial day of riding.

Accommodation : Ambleside

Day 3
Ambleside - Coniston Water Loop - Ambleside
39 Miles / 63 Kms Approx.
  • Meals: Breakfast, lunch
  • Ascent: 1,400 Metres Approx.

Time to explore Coniston Water on a fantastic circular route that will tick all your mountain biking boxes – speedy descents, technical trails, sweet singletrack, and cracking views that’ll see you snapping a few shots to annoy your riding mates who didn’t join you!

Open fells, cheeky climbs, and forest trails start our day before we reach the Coniston Viewpoint. From this lofty vantage point you’ll be able to look down to Coniston Water below and across to the Old Man of Coniston. This is for sure a place to kick-back and take it all in for a while.

From here, and for many the highlight of the day, is the devilish descent across Parkamoor down to Nibthwaite. That said, the route along Walna Scar will run a close second especially if you enjoy fun, fast technical riding

Our route takes us back into Ambleside for our second night here, with our evening meal again taken at one of its great pubs or restaurants.

Accommodation: Ambleside

Day 4
Ambleside - Grizesdale - Loughrigg - Ambleside
23 Miles / 37 Kms Approx.
  • Meals: Breakfast, lunch
  • Ascent: 1,000 Metres Approx.

A change in scenery from yesterday as we explore Grizedale, where lush forest trails snake around the hillsides and technical rocky descents such as Devil’s Gallop focus our attention.

Esthwaite Water makes for the perfect snack and caffeine kick stop before a spell of fun trails lead us to Claife Heights. From here there are great views of the Langdales with the riding delighting and challenging us in each measure.

This area of the Lakes is criss-crossed with former slate mines with the tracks around them providing the perfect playground for mountain bikers….and that’s where we head next. Get ready for an afternoon of twists and turns, ups and downs, and superb singletrack as we explore the trails around Hodge Close and Iron Keld.

We end today via Loughrigg Terrace with its superb views of Grasmere and Rydal Water before returning to Ambleside, where we stay again tonight.

Accommodation : Ambleside

Day 5
Ambleside - Garburn Pass - Haweswater - Penrith
30 Miles / 48 Kms Approx.
  • Meals: Breakfast, lunch
  • Ascent: 1,600 Metres Approx.

The best has indeed been left till last and is without a doubt the most challenging day in the saddle. Reading like a who’s who of Lake District classics our ride today really does round-off our time here in style, with classy cross-country riding every pedal stroke of the day!

We start the day with some tricky sections around Jenkins Crag before reaching the legendary Garburn Pass – an equally challenging section. Kentmere is next on the menu and serves us up a little respite with our well-deserved breather taken here in this beautiful valley.

From here, the highlights come think and fast with Sadgill, the Longsleddale Valley, and Gatescarth Pass enthusing and exciting us. Our final treat is the descent to the hidden village of Mardale on Haweswater before an undulating last section sees us weaving our way back to Penrith via the fells above Lake Ullswater and then Lowther Castle.

Suitably chuffed and rightly so, our final night is spent in Penrith. Time to celebrate with the clinking of glasses and tales of the trails after four days of top-notch mountain biking that you’ll remember for a lifetime.

Accommodation : Penrith

Day 6
Departure - Penrith
  • Meals: Breakfast

Breakfast polished off it’s time to load up your bike and head home. Same time next year? Rude not to eh!!

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The Cycling


The Lake District offers some fantastic off-road riding, with miles of technical trails, singletrack and double track. Many of the trails on these routes are rocky, with drop offs and step ups, loose stoney surfaces, mud, grass & the occasional roots.

This type of riding needs good bike handling skills and off-road experience to make the most of the trip. There are also some tough, and long, climbs, so a good level of fitness is required.

Of course with climbs come awesome descents, and these are some of the best you’ll get anywhere!

The routes are subject to changes depending on weather conditions and local alterations, especially in respect of some of the Forestry Commission land we will be biking through.

The final decision as to which route will be ridden each day will be taken by the guides on the day.


Mountain Biking Grade

Grade 4 - 5

Challenging/Demanding – Aspects of both our grade 4 and 5 rides. For experienced mountain bikers who enjoy difficult technical sections and physical challenges. Distances of 25-55 miles / 40-90 kms 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?

Trips that are graded as a 4-5, will have aspects of both our grade 4 and 5 trips. As well as keeping a good level of fitness you are also an experienced biker and enjoy riding more challenging trails. You usually ride most weekends and can cover between 30 and 50 miles over a full 8-9 hour day (with breaks). The routes you choose include challenging climbs perhaps with sharp switchbacks and sections of large and loose rocks. You are comfortable riding most trails including sections of technical or exposed singletrack with obstacles such as drop offs and rock gardens. Our grade 4-5 trips should suit you.

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Dates & Prices

Private Departures

Private Departures

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.

Whats Included Tick

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 and luggage transfers

F) GPX files on request

G) Scheduled Penrith train station transfers on arrival and departure days

What's not Included Cross

A) Bike rental (available if required)

B) Travel costs 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) Train station transfers on days other than the scheduled arrival / departure days

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The Essentials

Travel Options

If travelling by car the arrival point is Penrith where you will be able to leave your car for the duration of the trip.

If you would prefer to catch the train, the most convenient station for this weekend is Penrith with several services from London a day whisking you up north in around 3 hours. Please aim to arrive by around 18:00 on Friday evening.

Please check with us before making any travel arrangements to make sure we have reached the minimum number required to guarantee your trip and to ensure your arrangements fit with our scheduled transfers and logistics.

Please note If you make alternative travel arrangements, which fall outside of the group schedule, there may be an additional charge for individual transfers.


As with all of our trips we aim to use accommodation which showcases the style and hospitality of the area you are visiting and always have your comfort and convenience in mind.

For this trip we stay in Penrith on our initial evening and return here after three nights spent in Ambleside. If travelling by car you will be able to leave your vehicle at or close-by the Penrith accommodation for the duration of the trip.

Should you prefer to head home after the final day of riding there is a $55 reduction. It will however have been a long day and we don’t recommend this if you’ve a long journey ahead.

Bike Hire

If you don’t own a suitable bike or would prefer to avoid bringing your own we have bikes available to rent.

This is one of our higher grade tours and should you wish to rent a bike from us then we recommend you opt for a full suspension model. These are Giant Trance X2 27.5 full suspension XC/trail bikes with 140mm travel Fox forks and dropper seatposts.

If you do decide to rent we can include a helmet (though always nicer to bring your own!) and all necessary spares for the trip. Please request helmets before your trip.

Should you choose to rent you are welcome to bring your own saddle with you, and if you use clip-in pedals / SPDs you will need to bring these along.

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News, Reviews & Stories

Our expert's guide to the Lake District

The ability to explore it by bike has always enabled us to escape to its lesser-visited wonders...

Our guides favourite trails

We asked our guides about their favourite mountain bike trails...

Getting Ready for Your First MTB Trip

6 things you should know before heading up into the hills.


No reviews available yet!

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