Great Dun Fell: big climb

Discussion in 'Sportives' started by Christopher, 25 Jul 2009.

  1. dan_bo

    dan_bo How much does it cost to Oldham?

    That looks like a bit of a bugger lads- well done.
  2. longers

    longers Veteran

    Ok, a ride report.

    After a few butterflies from all concerned pre ride, we eventually met up at Carnforth Train Station - a delayed train meant Tony and I got a second breakfast of bacon butties and waffles with jam.

    Off in the van to Melmerby on a lovely day, the weather really was good to us, not too warm but sunny and with a decent tailwind up the hills. We went for a gentle spin up Hartside overtaking a few CTC ers and we got overtaken by a TVR club out for a drive, which made conversation difficult as every time you opened your mouth to speak another one went past.

    Five minutes was spent admiring the view, cars and bikes at the top before a nice long descent into the village and off to Knock. There looked to be a few people doing the Offroad CTC which crosses the road at the top, very handy for a rest at the cafe.

    Most of the photos were taken on the move so aren't the best quality.

    This was the view of our destination -the pimple on the right hand fell - from a few miles away which didn't help the butterflies, we were trying to pick out the road to the top and it looked horrible when we found it.


    At the bottom of the climb with it all to do.


    Looking back to Teesdale past Frustuck and Tony after the worst bit of the climb.


    Near the top and the last sting in the tail, Frustuck leading the way.


    We collared a pair of walkers to take this one, proof we did get there.
    I regret not winding them up that we really were to descend to Cow Gate Reservoir on 23mm tyres.


    Looking down to the valley and across to the Lakes.


    After that it was a fantastic descent to the bottom with Tony descending rapidly as ever and back to Melmerby where the pub won out over the Bakery and we enjoyed some fine ale before heading home.

    An excellent day out with great company. Cheers for driving Tony and thanks for suggesting it Frustuck.
  3. Jonathan M

    Jonathan M New Member

    Did that years ago on my MTB, absolute cracking climb.
  4. OP

    Christopher Über Member

    cheers longers! And thanks to Tony for the transport, that was first class. Great pics too.

    Glad my train back terminated in Preston, I fell asleep almost as soon as I got on it. I only had 39 miles on the clock but have rarely been so tired. Personally I found the steep bit 2/3 of the way up (after the short flat bit) the worst of all, nearly walked it, in look cleats or no. Happy to have done it!
  5. Renard

    Renard Guest

    Sound advice! It just about killed me at the end of my ride.

    By the time I tackled it I had hardly any fluid left. How I wished I had more. I was even tempted to drink the water from the burn at the side of the road despite the sheep!
  6. Globalti

    Globalti Legendary Member

    I've done it on the MTB as part of a huge circuit taking in High Cup Nick and Cow Green reservoir. The tarmac downhill is a fitting end to a big mountain day out, using MTBs for their proper purpose rather than messing around at some litter-strewn trail centre.
  7. PaulB

    PaulB Guru

    Ha! I'd walk that!
  8. ASC1951

    ASC1951 Guru

    Sounds good, RR. What was your route from the reservoir? Tracklogs suggests that to stay on bridleways you have to go on tarmac right up to Garrigill and back over Tyne Head.

    What was the surface like? Some of the routes were shin deep on foot last time I was there.
  9. Globalti

    Globalti Legendary Member

    Well spotted ASC1951, you found the weak spot in my route. Both times I've done this circuit I have left the track running NW along the shore of the res at about 780337 and simply yomped a few hundred yards west across open moor to pick up the end of the mine track by Metalband Hill. It's tufty and awkward and means carrying the bike as well as fording a steam but that's what mountain biking is all about, isn't it?

    From there I followed the BW running slightly south of west up Trout Beck to meet the radar station road.
  10. ASC1951

    ASC1951 Guru

    That makes sense. I did a similar yomp many years ago on cross country skis, which are only slightly less awkward than a bike over heather and scrappy snow. IIRC there was a lot of effing and blinding.
  11. PaulB

    PaulB Guru

  12. ColinJ

    ColinJ Hillfinder General

    I bet it was - well done Paul!

    I have a fantastic future forum ride planned to take in that climb/descent, Hartside, Yad Moss etc. but I would have to lose 4 stone, get loads of miles in and sort out my sore leg before I could seriously think of tackling it!
  13. stuhyde

    stuhyde Regular

    Great Dun Fell is described as the English Ventoux. If you have done Bedoin-Ventoux you will know its not the same. However it seems steeper and with narrower roads more brutal. I managed my first trip this morning and took a steady pace. Used my 34 30 gear to get up the steep bits. Like Ventoux its windy on top, So take a coat for the top and the ride back down. A great challenge however. As a rather large cyclist it made a very interesting ride. The suicidal sheep leaping out from the ditch kept me even more alert going down. Helpfully there are marker poles going up so you can count down from 340 something to one, they are about 10 yds between them. Unlike Ventoux there are 2 down bits going up, and a useful and refreshing stream stop if you run out of water.It is not well signposted outside of the village of Knock. So check your route properly beforehand. This morning the first people I saw were at the bottom on my return, so I could look smug knowing the pain they were about to endure.:rolleyes:
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