Holmfirth - Glossop - Buxton - Castleton - Bakewell - Sheffield - Holmfirth
Updated: May 31
100 mile loop of the Northern Peak District National Park!! A real belter of a day out!!
Technically 95.1 miles rather than 100 but whats a few miles between friends........
This RIDE covers the northern part of this great area of the UK. There are some brilliant biking roads in the Peak District, some we have covered before and others we haven't covered yet. There are so many variations you can take within this area - most of which are fantastic days out on the bikes. If you have any routes you would like to share with others please send it in to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Holmfirth is the starting point of this RIDE. The home of the classic TV series Last of the Summer Wine is a small Yorkshire town with buildings made from the classic (for this area) stone that blackens with age.
Holmfirth is a great place to start a ride in this area due to it's proximity to the great riding. A few miles in a south westerly direction and you are already on great roads with fantastic scenery.
From Holmfirth, at the base of the valley you head out on Woodhead Road up hill steadily through Holmbridge and on into the countryside. Once clear of Holmbridge the road steepens as houses give way to farmland and pasture.
As you clear the small village of Holme you get your 1st glimpse of the Holme Moss transmitting station on the top of the hill high ahead. Soon you will be passing this landmark and some brilliant photo opportunities at the top of the hill.
Between Holme and the transmitting station at Holme Moss there are some fantastic uphill bends to ride, these flow from left to right and constantly upwards. At the top of the hill is a car park on the left, it is here that you can stop to take in the stunning views to the northeast - That backdrop is crying out for your bike in the foreground of a great photo!!
From the Summit of Holme Moss at 524 meters above sea level you descend towards Woodhead Reservoir where you briefly join the A628 before turning left at the dam of the reservoir and heading into Glossop.
Here is a brilliant video filmed by Chris Barker at Holme Moss
Straight through the main crossroads at Glossop and you are back into the countryside once again. For the next 8 miles you are on the A624 - an open, flowing road with some great quick bends as well as some ascents and descents; the descents showcasing the beautiful scenery ahead and into the distance.
Following the descent into Chinley and entering the 30 mph zone, you pass beneath the railway bridge and come to a T junction. Left here followed immediately by a right and a mile or so down a narrow single width road takes you around the centre of Chapel-en-le-Frith town centre.
Another left and right at the next two T junctions takes you on Manchester Road, past Combs Reservoir to the left. You wind your way down the slight hill and beneath a railway bridge before turning left at the next major traffic light crossroad junction.
From the traffic lights this is the start of a brilliant road between whaley Bridge and Buxton. This is a generally quick and very windy 6 mile stretch of road that climbs gradually through lots of sweeping bends that need very little slowing down. As you climb, the valley continues to drop off to your right - again exposing the fabulous scenery.
It is at about mile 3 from the traffic lights, where you quickly approach a brilliant combination of tight bends!!
This series of bends starts with a sharp left hander followed by a straight that leads into a long sweeping right hand bend that has great visibility of oncoming traffic and is a lot of fun. Straight after the right hander you enter a snaking left-right-left-right that makes you grin as you throw the bike over it's axis.
A sweeping quick right followed by two further similar left handers and you are out of the tight area.
Here you are back into more open roads with generally quick shallow bends. You are now high up with more of those views all around that you can enjoy a little while you reflect on that series of bends as you head into Buxton.
From the Spa Town of Buxton you join the A6 in a northerly direction and turn right at the 1st roundabout onto the A623. This road climbs past a large old quarry on the right and on up to over 400 meters above sea level at the crest of the hill. As you start your descent you are turning at the 1st right and on towards Castleton.
After the right turn you are on the Winnats Pass, a stunning, steep (20%) descent through a sheer V shaped valley that drops over 200 meters in less than 2 km into Castleton.
Castleton is a hub for walking and outdoor types so expect to get some traffic through the tight town centre. It is a common occurrence to get walkers reading OS maps, not concentrating on the road that they are casually wondering into.
That said where there are tourists there are tea rooms and pubs serving food. If you are wanting to stop in nice surroundings this is a great spot.
You leave Castleton to the east on the A6187 and on through Hope. After clearing Hope village you are looking for a pub named the Travellers Rest. The pub will be on your left - here you are turning right directly opposite the pub and heading south for Brough / Bradwell on the B6049.
This is a generally quiet road that has a good quality surface and can be pushed on a little through the valley with plenty of bends to make things fun. At the end of the road you reach a T junction where you turn left onto the A623. You are briefly on the A623 for 1.5 miles before turning right on to the B6465 at the 3 Stags Heads Inn.
Following the right turn there are a few scattered houses that line the road. Once passed the houses and beyond the national speed limit signs, the B6465 is another great Peak District biking road that allows you to unleash your bikes horsepower and get along nicely.
There is a good photo opportunity at the Monsal Head Pub overlooking the valley to the Headstone Viaduct below.
From here you are only a few miles away from Bakewell, a well earned rest and obviously a Bakewell Tart!!
In Bakewell there is plenty of parking, but The Peacock Pub has a small parking area that is perfect for a group of bikes to pitch up and go grab a drink in the establishment, then make use of the large outdoor seating area where you can chill out watching the bikes cooling down.
Following your rest and recoup in Bakewell it is helmet on time again and back on the road.
Depending on the time of the year, this 1st section of road can almost feel like a tunnel. This is due to the extent of overhanging trees that line the road from both sides as you head along the valley bottom in a northerly direction along the B6001.
At the village of Calver you are turning right as you exit the small village. Here you are turning on to the A625 which is signposted to Sheffield.
Here the A625 initiates your climb from the valley bottom. You take the steep left hand bend and cross the canal bridge, you are then heading upwards, traversing the hillside beneath more overhanging trees and around bends that form the valley.
You come out of the trees as the road levels off at the top of the hill where you are straight around a sweeping left hand bend and then on past the Grouse Inn pub on the tops. Past the Grouse Inn and around a few more great bends before turning right at the Fox House pub junction.
As you turn right at the Fox House - a great looking stone-built pub that dates back to the late 1700's, you head uphill again briefly before dropping down the other side of the hill where you can look east and see the landscape flattening out to the south of Sheffield and beyond towards Lincolnshire.
You are staying on this road all the way into Sheffield (there is a more scenic route through a lot of tight roads that skirt the western boundary of Sheffield - if you would like to take this option click HERE.
For this RIDE we will use the slightly more straight forward option of going into Sheffield briefly.
Once you hit the inner ring road you are turning left at the roundabout and continuing until you get to the A61 where you are turning left and heading towards Hillsborough. Before reaching Hillsborough you are turning left for the A6102, this takes you out of Sheffield, north through Oughtibridge and on through the heavy woodland at Wharncliffe before reaching the Stocksbridge bypass and turning left - Whilst the Stocksbridge bypass is a quick road it is worth noting that the police take a lot of interest in this area.
You continue on this road past Langsett and up to the Flouch roundabout where you are heading straight over and up the teasingly long straight before getting to the crossroads and turning left, on to the final stint.
A short climb over the hill top, then winding your way through the last of the bends before heading back down into Holmfirth and the end of this RIDE.