Your favourite cycling route in Yorkshire and the Humber – 1st prize – Andrew Beck
This route was sent to us by Andrew Beck, winner of the 1st prize on „Your favourive cycling route in Yorkshire and the Humber” competition, organised by Clicktrans.com – an online transport marketplace.
I am lucky, the best cycle route in Yorkshire is the one I take to work, well the best bits of it are in Yorkshire and the bit at the end is in Lancashire.
My hour long cycle commute takes me sharply uphill from Hebden Bridge, bypassing Heptonstall and on through the hilariously named hamlet of Slack Bottom.
By that point I am exhausted but the climb levels out to Slack top and the old imposing old Methodist Chapel before I drop down a single track road with Hardcastle Craggs National Trust beauty spot on my right and head towards the wild moors around the Walshaw estate. The road drops down to just next to where there is a stream and a popular picnic spot where fallen trees make natural bridges over the water then climbs steeply up again to the moors. At this time of the year rabbits and lambs are more likely to be on the road than cars and I am buzzed by an owl now and then as curlews and falcons dart overhead.
Forty minutes into my ride to work I pass the Packhorse Inn which stands alone at the gateway to the top moors then a slight dip in the road means I speed down then up again towards Widdop reservoir where on a still day the hills and pines are perfectly reflected in the water like an Alpine scene. A tough climb after Widdop takes me to the wild pass between Yorkshire and Lancashire that looks like somewhere hill tribes might have met and fought 2000 years ago then with a rush and a push into the valley and out of it again I am through leafy outer Burnley and drop into the hospital.
I really do think it is the best commute in the country, an hour of spectacular scenery, wildlife and massive views over Pendle Hill that seem to go on as far as the Lake District when it is clear. In fairness there are days when I am doing it in sleet or have to turn back because there are a few inches of snow on the road but there is no doubting that this is the best commute anyone could ask for.