Cycling FAQs

What about traffic?

The Dales is a sparsely populated area compared to most of the country which means that most roads carry much less traffic than is experienced in other parts of England. The busier roads connect the main towns but there is nearly always a way of avoiding these on quieter back lanes.

What about the hills?

The hill and moorland scenery is what attracts most people to the area so it is not surprising that the cycling is not always flat. There are routes that follow the valley bottoms and these can provide relatively easy cycling, linking lovely towns and villages. Any effort in climbing hills is always rewarded with fantastic views of the Dales landscape, and if you need to walk that’s no problem. Just take your time and enjoy the wonderful surroundings.

Where are good places to start?

Most towns and large villages in the Dales are good bases to start from, and will have pubs, cafes, toilets, shops, accommodation, and information centres to help you on your way.

How do I plan a route of my own?

The best map is probably the Harvey map ‘Yorkshire Dales for Cyclists’ (available from our online shop or direct from Harvey) which covers the whole area at a reasonable scale. It has lots of ideas about places to visit and see along the way and detailed information showing the hills you might meet.

What about the weather?

The weather in the Yorkshire Dales can be as variable as anywhere else in Britain. You could find yourself cycling in glorious sunshine worrying about the suntan cream, or caught in a heavy downpour. The key thing is to come prepared. Whatever the forecast says it is worth packing a lightweight waterproof just in case.

The Met Office in the right hand column provides a forecast for the next five days in a range of locations in the Yorkshire Dales area. If you require more information, see the Met Office website.

What sort of bike should I use?

People coming to the area can be found on a variety of bikes from light weight racing bikes through to mountain bikes. The key thing is that it should be in good working order, and have low gears if you are taking on the hills, and good brakes for coming down them.

What else should I bring?

The Yorkshire Dales does have some pretty remote areas so help might not always be just around the corner. Knowing how to do a few basic repairs like mending a puncture can save a long walk. And don’t rely on your mobile phone to get you out of trouble as reception is patchy in the Dales.

What's the weather?

Where are you riding?

Select a location: