Many mountain bike routes start or finish in Brassington. Some of the routes are quite easy and can be enjoyed by people of moderate ability. Others are real endurance tests suitable only for athletes (and masochists). Hopefully there is something for everyone. If not, the routes can be customised to suit individual requirements:
14.0km - Roman Holiday
22.1km - Carson Rezzer
22.4km - Bravelow
24.0km - Spartacus
35.0km - T’Owd Man’s Revenge
38.9km - The Big Easy
41.3km - Mockingbird
44.7km - Momentum
47.8km - Town & Country
50.5km - Wings of a Dove
All of the routes begin and end at the bus shelter in front of the church. If you park outside the village and cycle in (from Wirksworth Dale for example), you will have to add an extra bit of distance and time to each route.
The distances and ride times were measured on my cycle computer whilst riding each route. They were not calculated from maps. Vertical distances were measured using an altimeter. Note that a ride time is pedalling time only. It does not include time spent drinking tea at the cafe, taking photos or sitting down to have a ‘map moment’. As a rough guide, plan on completing a route in the ride time plus a couple of hours.
I prefer kilometres to miles (because I’m a modern kind of guy) and all measurements are given in metric units. If you prefer miles, multiply each distance by 0.62.
The character of a route can vary dramatically depending on the weather, the ability of the rider, the equipment used and the direction of travel. This has been highlighted in the descriptions where relevant, but please bear it in mind as well. If you find yourself out of your depth, it is usually possible to escape back to Brassington fairly easily, though you will need an OS map to do so.
Also bear in mind that things are liable to change over time and the route descriptions may be out of date. For example, both Gallowlow Lane and the track past Upper Moor Farm have now been renovated and are a lot tamer than they used to be. On the other hand, Clough Lane is deteriorating fast…
The routes have been designed around the idea that tarmac is best for riding uphill and the rough stuff is best for down. This is not because I am lazy, but because I think it makes the whole experience more enjoyable. On the other hand I also believe that getting lost, taking a nosedive into a muddy puddle and mending a puncture on Gallowlow Lane in winter are all part of the fun as well. So get ready for an adventure as well as having fun!
Some things to remember:
- All distances and times are approximate.
- Always ride with consideration for others, especially people on foot and horse riders.
- No responsibility or liability of any kind is accepted or implied by the author.
Dean Smart 31st March 2008