Cycling Around the Derbyshire Peak District, a Brief Guide
The Derbyshire Peak District is one of the most beautiful areas of the Great British countryside, so it’s not surprising that it was designated as the first “National Park” in the British Isles.
Even though the Peak District is essentially a rural area with plenty of rolling picturesque landscapes; it was also home to the start of the industrial revolution towards the end of the 18th century. It started with the mechanisation of the textile industries, many of which were based in the north with many based around the Peak District and rural farming communities. The expansion of trade was enabled by the introduction of canals, improved roads and railway networks.
A lot of this bygone past can still be seen today around the Peak District region and in many of the villages as you can see old villages, remnants of the old mills and railway lines. It’s the railway lines that have now had a new lease of life after their closure over the last decade, as now many of the historical rail routes are now available for cyclists to get around the area to see the sights.
The cycle routes in the Peak District vary so there is something to suit everyone’s ability and fitness, plus they make an ideal safe non-road traffic option for families. One of the most popular cycle rides is the “The Tissington Trail” which follows a 13 mile route from Ashbourne to Parsley Hay, where it then joins up to the High Peak Trail.
The High Peak Trail is higher elevation cycling option which navigates through from the High Peak Junction to Dowlow, near to the Spa town of Buxton. All the routes you will find in these areas are surrounded by beautiful countryside, as the traffic-free trail is an ideal option for cyclists, horse riders, hikers and walkers.
Cycling in this area is good at pretty much anytime throughout the year with the exception of the snow-covered winter periods. If you want to get a bit more energetic you can head out on many of the single tracks, or head across the High Peak area which is suited for people with a reasonable level of fitness and ability, plus there are many local cycle guides to take you on many of the cycle tours available. So wherever you decide to cycle in the Peak District, there will be something for people of all ages.