Lake District

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  • I need to go to a social event in Ambleside in May, looking at booking the train to Oxenholme from Euston, then riding the last 15 or so miles rather than changing onto another train to Windermere.

    I mapped out a route on mapmyride as i wanted to see what kind of elevation profile it would have.­gdom/-windermere/448126385664538658

    There is a checkbox for 'show elevation profile' on the right of the map, but to be honest i find it hard to translate this into how it would be, due to lack of experience.

    I have only ever ridden fixed gear on relatively flat commute in london but am relatively fit, so wondered if anyone with experience of hilly terrain could check out the route, and tell me if this would be feasible or foolhardy on my usual 71", or if i should drop to low 60's, or if i should consider swapping in a freewheel instead of fixed (or of course just htfu...)

    Prefer to do it on my current bike, as my geared bike (cheapish and heavy rigid specialized hardrock) was dismantled and put in the loft recently due to non-use as i haven't ridden it since about 7 months ago when i built my fixed bike up, but would get it down again if necessary.

    Thanks for any advice

  • The elevation profile doesn't show much in the way of detail but I see no reason why you can't do that on a 71" gear as it doesn't look that hilly. Some of the Tuesday Night Ride Club rides go up significant hills and people get up them using similar gears to yours. The fact that you've got no other option means you do just have to HTFU sometimes and muscle your way up the hill.

    You could follow the A591 as that looks like it has a railway and a river running alongside it which would suggest it's fairly flat.

  • Here's the route with elevation:

    There are a couple of steep climbs, but I think I'd more be worried about condition of the road and the narrowness of the road at some of the points on that route more than the climbs. I'm a shit climber, but as the route is relatively short I think the climbs are doable with some pain, though I'd be wanting to pick a mid to high-60's gear inch to balance getting up them and safely down too.

  • That Ride with GPS site is so superior to it's rivals. It also makes that route look much harder, especially the climb at the 6 mile mark. I'd drop my gearing for that I think, and go for something around the mid-60s.

  • Yeah, they also allow you to export without having to signup... a welcome addition, though I did signup I do appreciate not having to do so to get basic functionality.

  • Definitely doable, especially for 15 miles. I'm no great climber either and managed the Coast to Coast fixed. The first 80 miles are similar profile to that and I rode 63 GI. Did put a back brake on to make it a bit less painful going down hill. Think my mate was on about 67 GI and also fine. We both had freewhweels, thinking we'd need them but never flipped over. If you're reasonably fit I'd agree with the others on mid 60s and you'll be absolutely fine

  • thanks a lot for your input, that's good to know, i shall keep the set up as it is I think (at least its supposed to be a nice part of the country to walk in...). I think i profiled the A591 route initally, but the hills were steeper so i went for a workaround, but i guess the A591 may be safer in terms of condition and width etc.

    Like the look of the ride with GPS site also, didn't get that back in my results when i was searching for a way of doing elevation profiles, haven't had to do them before as I sadly only get to ride to commute in last 10 years. Hoping to start doing some (lfgss) group rides this year to change that.

  • Detour via Hardknott Pass?

  • One for your 80" gear, Gav?

  • One for your 80" gear, Gav?

    it's like several ditchlings joined together but much steeper

  • It's for sheep, not cyclists.

  • I copied a route of the internet onto my GPS for a group ride up there, didn't bother looking at the profile and it turned out to be a total killer of a ride. Defintaly the hardest 60mile cycle I've ever done. Started with Kirkstone pass then did Hardknott pass in the photo and another equally tough one. I was releaved from navigational duties after that one!

  • my old man used to be a telegram boy in this neck of the woods in the 40's. He used to do it all on his track bike with bamboo wheels an all! Saw some pics of him the other day and his thighs were uuge!

  • Bumpediy Bump ... going to the Lake District in 2 weeks time, staying in a cottage in Ambleside.
    I'm gonna take my road bike, and would be up for some riding of a level similar to the SSTC outings.

    What are the roads up there like? Any advice on not so busy routes etc?

  • Ambleside is one of the honey pots mate, alll the cars nodders as well as everyone else goes there.
    You can get out and explore though, take some time to look for what seem good long routes.
    Off road, be ready for some grunt! have a good time, dont know how fit you are and what you spin, so cant really advise on gearing for SS/ FIX

  • Honeypot? Grmmpfff ... that's what happens when you leave picking the cottage to your better half.
    Not going fixed/SS, I have an audax type bike with compact double, 32/28 lowest gear and manage the usual surrey hills 40-50 miler ok, including leith hill and whitedown.

    Off road not really an option unless I rent a bike I'm afraid.

  • Ah yeah,
    just go out on that, compact and all plenty enough gears, will be sweet, theres a few hilly bits round them parts, but you know the advice, comes in a four letter abbreviation....

  • U mean GAFC? As in Grab a fucking cab?

  • *m.f, have you done any of the passed there? hardknott and "the struggle" sound like serious bastards. Not sure if that's anything I should aim for.
    I manage Leith hill and whitedown in surrey, but those sound like a different league.
    Any smaller / easier passes / climbs you can recommend?

  • Sorry, but I am not sure whether I can manage that to be honest :(

  • haha! what a great sign!

  • Sorry, but I am not sure whether I can manage that to be honest :(

    Just do one of the bailout options when you get tired.

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Lake District

Posted by Avatar for simonw7 @simonw7