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Activities / Cycling in and around Derbyshire

Derbyshire is a county with magnificent, natural beauty which provides a beautiful setting in which to enjoy a cycling break.

There are footpaths, disused railway lines and sweeping country roads locked away from the heavy traffic and the hustle and bustle of everyday life.

Whether itís a family daytrip, a bicycle ride for two or mountain biking, then Derbyshire certainly is the place in which to do it.

The map below depicts just a few of the many cycle routes that Derbyshire has to offer.


A. Longdendale Trail
The Longdendale Trail runs for around 6.5 miles, from just beyond Hadfield Station to the entrance to the Woodhead Tunnel. Following the Trans-Pennine railway closed in 1981.

This is an excellent trail, especially for families and beginners. The surface is of smooth sand, which can make the going quite difficult when it is wet. This is not really a trail to try in bad weather, as it is very open to the elements. It is advisable therefore to choose your direction of travel according to the wind direction.

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B. Sett Valley Trail
The Sett Valley Trail runs 2.5 miles. It runs from Hayfield Station to New Mills.

The Sett Valley Trail is at first hard work with many gates and obstructions to negotiate. However, from Hayfield onwards it is quite very pleasant. Hayfield village is well worth a visit and if you want to see some of the unspoilt countryside, then walk from the car park near Bowden Bridge towards Kinderlow Edge past Tunstead Clough Farm.

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C. Middlewood Way
The Middlewood Way runs for a total of 11 miles, from Marple to Macclesfield.

The Middlewood Way is provides the ideal opportunity for a quiet and enjoyable family outing. Picnic sites are situated at various points along the trail. The Middlewood Way also offers walkers a number of alternative routes and circular walks via the nearby Macclesfield Canal and Ladybrook Valley.

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D. Monsal Trail
The Monsal Trail runs for 8.5 miles between Blackwell and Monsal Head

The Monsal Trail follows the deep limestone valley of the River Wye with crags towering 100 metres above, a river that changes from a fast flowing torrent to a serene lakeland paradise, and spanned by the Monsal Viaduct. This trail is among the very best that you'll find in the Peak National Park.

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E. High Peak Trail
The High Peak Trail joins up with the Tissington Trail at Parsley Hay. It is 17.5 miles long and follows the old Cromford Railway, starting at Cromford and finishing at Dowlow, south of Buxton.

This is perhaps the most interesting of the trails because this old railway line is much less straight than other railways, with sharp curves which seem to give frequent changes of view. For a railway line it is, in fact, not level and has several fairly steep inclines, which now provide variety for the cyclist.
N.B. The steep inclines may seem fun, however cyclists are not advised to ride on them.

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F. Tissington Trail
Together with The High Peak Trail, this is the oldest of the Peak District Trails. It runs 13 miles from what was Ashbourne Station to join The High Peak Trail at Parsley Hay.

This is a very pleasant ride, the surface is limestone so will be good in all weathers. The northern half runs over the limestone uplands, the remainder being the through softer lines of the lower valleys where the trail is largely wooded, giving occasional glimpses of the landscape. This trail is uphill all the way North, so it is a good idea to head North first.

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G. Manifold Track
The Manifold Track, located entirely within Staffordshire, runs for a total of 9 miles. It meanders through two river valleys; the Manifold and the Hamps.

The section of the Manifold Valley through which this track runs is quite a good example of the deep limestone valleys of the White Peak. It is quite wooded so the views are not as spectacular as other trails. The most notable feature is Thor's Cave.
N.B. The section between Wettonmill and Swainsley is open to vehicles, so you will need to keep close to children.

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For information on cycle hire and cycling event organisers, check the cycling category located on the activities page.

Please note: Wherever you are cycling, make sure you are familiar with the good cycling code.



Tissington Trail Manifold Track High Peak Trail High Peak Trail Monsal Trail Middlewood Way Sett Valley Trail Longdendale Trail Manifold Track Tissington Trail High Peak Trail Monsal Trail Middlewood Way Sett Valley Trail Longdendale Trail


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