Buy the OS Route Map and instructions for this route

The trails around Nidderdale win plenty of plaudits, but most of the tyre tracks are put down on the rough tracks that run straight up the dale to the scenic Scar House Reservoir. Much less riding is done on the curlew-haunted moors that run from Pateley Bridge to Grassington, yet a quick look at a map will reveal plenty of tracks to explore.
This ride kicks in sharply, with a steep, gruelling pull up from Pateley Bridge onto the inappropriately-named Flat Moor. The grapple with gravity doesn’t end there, although a good track and fine views make the next section much more enjoyable than the first. The good track deserts you eventually, leaving a short pull on peaty moorland to the top.
The next climb is the last of any real note, but it’s a tough one, made all the harder by the die-straight track that ensures the top never gets any closer. The walled-in descent from Eller Nook Edge makes it worth the effort — the down just keeps coming as you hang a right to drop to the road.
If 5km of road isn’t your idea of fun, take a break at the tea shop at Stump Cross Cavern. The hard work’s all behind you now and the day’s best descent awaits. The Nabs spoil heaps are criss-crossed with tracks and trails, and there’s little chance of finding the true line of the bridleway. Keep left as you start down the wall, then swing right to follow an audacious line right across the hillside — can you stay off the brakes on the really loose stuff?
A hairpin bend signals the end of the fun — unless, of course, you want to walk back up and have another go. Either way, from there it’s good tracks all the way back down to Pateley Bridge.