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Road Bike Grading

When grading these routes, we have tried to consider a number of factors, including the climbs, distances and duration involved, and the inclusion of family friendly, traffic free routes.

Please see the tables below for full definitions. Although this system is by no means comprehensive and is only given as a guide, we hope it may enable you to choose a ride which suits your needs.

To keep it simple we have followed the same colour coding used for grading mountain bike trails – although there is no parallel universe on our black routes!

Routes by distance

Family Friendly Routes
Routes up to 20 miles in length on mostly traffic-free routes. In some areas linear routes can be connected via roads to create a longer circular route for competent riders.

Moderate Routes
Routes between 30 – 50 miles in length. They will take a cyclist of average fitness 2 – 3 hours to complete.

Hard Routes
Routes 60 – 80 miles in length. They will take a cyclist with a good level of fitness 4 – 5 hours to complete.

Black Routes
These routes are over 90 miles in length and include some of the most challenging climbs this country has to offer. Not for the faint-hearted.

Choose from the following fitness levels

Easy routes
A route suitable for people with a reasonable level of fitness and who are in good health. Generally sheltered & low level routes with few climbs of any length.

Moderate routes
A route which is in parts physically demanding. Contains climbs which are strenuous but relatively short lived. A good standard of fitness is required. High level routes which may often be exposed to the elements.

Hard routes
A physically demanding route. Long & sustained climbs throughout. High level routes which may often be exposed to the elements. A high standard of fitness is essential.

Black routes
These routes are for experienced cyclists with a high standard of physical fitness. You will face some of the most challenging and iconic climbs this country has to offer. High level routes, which may often be exposed to the elements.

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