Viewing 36 posts - 1 through 36 (of 36 total)
  • Howgill Fells & the Calf, which way round?
  • kevj
    Free Member

    I’m heading over to the Howgill Fells next weekend to do the loop over Bowderdale and the calf. I’ve read some prefer getting the climb out of the way and enjoy a longer descent, where others prefer doing it the other way around.
    Which is best?

    stevestunts
    Free Member

    Clockwise for me, no question!

    trout
    Free Member

    Most definite go clockwise push grunt and struggle up the calf and enjoy the long decent .
    IMHO

    djglover
    Free Member

    clockwise for sure and its at least 95% rideable on the way up

    Junkyard
    Free Member

    clockwise and it is all rideable though the rocky loose bit needs low wind /luck to clear

    kevj
    Free Member

    Cheers for the replies, clockwise it is then.

    Travelling down from further north, is it worth the extra few miles to start at Sedbergh or would parking on the A685 at mid point be an option?

    elliptic
    Free Member

    You’d be fine starting from Ravenstonedale. Only disadvantage is not having fresh legs for the long haul up Winder and the Calf, but then you get the Bowderdale descent as the big finish :-)

    And another +1 for clockwise, can’t imagine why anyone would want to go *up* Bowderdale.

    lowey
    Full Member

    can’t imagine why anyone would want to go *up* Bowderdale.

    Because Bowderdale isnt really a “descent” for its full length ?

    I’ve ridden it a few times and always clockwise, but I can see the appeal for the other way. I bet the run down from the Calf back to Sedbergh would be brilliant. And lets face it, Bowderdale is great for the 1st 2 miles form the Calf, then its just flat boggy undulating trail to the end of the valley.

    Personally the little drop through the forest at Murthwaite is my fav part of the whole ride.

    bella
    Free Member

    Clockwise and I would start in sedburgh. If you end up bonking or running out of tubes after dropping into bowderdale it is a long push out at the end of a fairly long ride.

    ton
    Full Member

    i have done it anticlockwise
    with ‘madeinyorkshire’ off here.
    it was shit seriously…………push, push, push

    Doug
    Free Member

    Sedbergh/Calf/Bowderdale out and back IMO. Turn around when Bowderdale stops being fun. The blast back down to Sedburgh at the end gets stupid fast in places.

    stevestunts
    Free Member

    the little drop through the forest at Murthwaite

    That’s a proper grin-inducer, isn’t it? :D

    DeeJay
    Free Member

    I always rode it anticlockwise from Ravenstonedale – the descent from The Calf is bonkers fast – the trail along Bowderdale is good in either direction and is rideable to the top – BUT on the STW Northern Chapter ride we did it clockwise from Sedburgh and I found the section from Ravenstonedale back to Sedburgh the highlight of the day – especially, as lowey says, the descent through the woods at Murthwaite :-)

    [/url]
    BIG climb to start

    TandemJeremy
    Free Member

    Holy thread resurrection. Thinking of doing this on Sunday as we are travelling back from Warrington to Edinburgh so its on the way (sort of).

    Is it as good as it looks? How boggy is it? How long does it take?

    Ta

    glenh
    Free Member

    It was pretty boggy in parts a month or so ago, but it may have improved a bit by now, although there’s been plenty of rain, so maybe not.

    ton
    Full Member

    teej, i dont get too boggy.
    steep push/ride on short grass to the top of the calf mainly
    rocky/sandy singletrack descent to ravonstonedale
    mixed grade b/w back to sedburgh might be a bit muddy in places.

    ir_bandito
    Free Member

    I’d been thinking of doing it for my solstice ride, but there was a thread on here last week asking about it in present conditions and it put me off.
    Going to need a bit more to dry out I think…

    But… it is forecast to stay dry, so might be ok by the weekend…

    TandemJeremy
    Free Member

    Ta chaps. Starting from Sedburgh and going clockwise so we could return from ravonstonedale on road.
    How long? its only 23 miles ish and a couple of thousand feet of climbing 4 hrs? we ain’t quick tho

    higgo
    Free Member

    I rode it on Sunday. It was definitely wetter than when I’ve done it before and it made a noticeable difference to the riding. Tougher going up The Calf, down Bowderdale was more slidey so less flow and difficulty carrying speed when we needed to.

    Having said that, we enjoyed it and it will be drier now than it was on Sunday with the temps, sun and wind.

    higgo
    Free Member

    Starting from Sedburgh and going clockwise so we could return from ravonstonedale on road.

    You’ll miss the best bit of the route (Murthwaite woods – dunno if that’s the proper name but that’s what I call it) if you return all the way by road.

    higgo
    Free Member

    p.s. here’s a pic of Rik (occassional STW poster) who managed to fall over while stood still next to his bike on Sunday. Be careful out there.

    TandemJeremy
    Free Member

    Murthwaite woods the map I have does not show a path in the strip of woodland – the obvious path is above it. Is the path obvious on the ground when you get there?

    how long to get round?

    http://www.streetmap.co.uk/map.srf?x=371500&y=498500&z=120&sv=murthwaite&st=3&tl=Map+of+Murthwaite,+Cumbria+&searchp=ids.srf&mapp=map.srf

    higgo
    Free Member

    That ‘Streetmap’ view of Murthwaite has a BW running right through it – that’s the one.

    I can send you the route I use as either .trl or .gpx if it helps.

    It took us around 6 hours but that included a pint, chips and coffee in the sun outside the Black Swan in Ravenstondale. Rik’s quick but I’m not so he has to wait for me. Drier conditions and no pub stop would knock an hour off.

    TandemJeremy
    Free Member

    Higgo – sound – thats the one I intended – the red dashed line is the bridleway is it not? Mustn’t stray onto the dotted lines? the one on the hill above / to the west of the stip of woodland?

    Ta muchly

    B.A.Nana
    Free Member

    Did it a few years ago from Sedburgh and thought it was all a bit average. Not sure if it was the bike, ground conditions on the day, my fitness, my expectations after all the internet hype or whatever, but for whatever reason, didn’t enjoy it that much.

    higgo
    Free Member

    Did it a few years ago from Sedburgh and thought it was all a bit average.

    We discussed it at the weekend as ‘rambling with bikes’. There are a couple of stand out sections but for quite a bit of it you’re just covering ground. It’s certainly not a thrill-a-minute ride.

    But I keep going back.

    grum
    Free Member

    I bet the run down from the Calf back to Sedbergh would be brilliant.

    It is. Soooooo fast – wheeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!

    TandemJeremy
    Free Member

    I am quite happy with “rambling with bikes” or ambient jeycore lite as I like to refer to it :-)

    Diane
    Free Member

    Don’t do the road back however tired you are – the last bit is lovely :-)

    higgo
    Free Member

    Trekster
    Full Member

    Bit moist when I was there last;



    failedengineer
    Full Member

    Done it clockwise from Sedbergh many times – so last time we decided to do it anti-clockwise. Guess what, preferred it that way. It’s a grim push up the last bit of Bowderdale but once on top, woo hoo! The descent(s)on the way back to Sedbergh are ace. Bowderdale’s overrated as a descent, it’s almost as good as a climb (except the top bit, of course) Try it.

    DaveyBoyWonder
    Free Member

    I was sold Bowderdale as being a ‘7 mile downhill’. I was lied to. A short, steep descent and then lots of flatish stuff all the way to the northern end of the ride. Good ‘proper’ ride though. Although the descent off the Calf back to Sedburgh must be mentally fast, its not going to be difficult is it? Wide and good surface – is there a cheeky/tech option?

    higgo
    Free Member

    Given the weather forecast through to Sunday – I reckon you’ll have a good day for it.

    younggeoff
    Full Member

    it’s ace both way’s round, one of my first rides with the club was an out and back from ravenstonedale to sedbergh on a hardtail with v-brakes, that was fun :P

    B.A.Nana
    Free Member

    I was sold Bowderdale as being a ‘7 mile downhill’. I was lied to. A short, steep descent and then lots of flatish stuff all the way to the northern end of the ride.

    Yeah, that’s how I remember it. But Yes, very much a big day out.

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