Inspired by Huddersfield Olympian Ed Clancy and want to get on your bike?
Then the forthcoming South Pennines Walk and Ride Festival 2016 could be just the thing to start a two-wheeled adventure.
The 16-day programme of organised walks, cycle rides and horse treks in North and West Yorkshire and parts of Lancashire includes cycle training as well as events for beginners and more experienced cyclists.
Covering more than 140 events, the festival (from September 10 to 25) celebrates all that the dramatic Pennine landscape has to offer – beautiful rolling hills, unspoilt moorland, historic villages and scenic trails.
In the Huddersfield area alone there are 30 or so walks and rides, including the chance to ramble with Holme Valley Mountain Rescue, try Nordic walking on Marsden Moor, take health walks around several villages, cycle the Moonrakers ride in Slaithwaite, explore Happy Valley in Sowerby Bridge, and hike the heritage trail at Standedge. Learn how to ride a bike at one of the cycle training sessions in Huddersfield or try a saddle of quite a different kind at a pony trekking centre in Rossendale.
Further afield there are themed events for those who want to forage for mushrooms, learn how to navigate, discover the history of an area or develop their photography skills.
What to expect
The aim of the festival, managed by rural regeneration company Pennine Prospects, is to encourage outdoor activities, and the starting point of almost every event in the festival programme (visit www.walkandridefestival.co.uk for details) is accessible by public transport.
Festival co-odinator Adele Adams explained: “Whether you’re a seasoned walker, a keen cyclist or someone wanting to try a new activity or sport we’ll have an event for you.
“Experienced walkers can join Mick Chatham on the Calderdale Way, for example. Mike will guide people on six circular walks over six non-consecutive days.
“For some people the breath-taking South Pennines landscape would be enough but others also enjoy delving into the area’s rich history – for them we also have plenty on offer.”
Five to try
We’ve selected just a few of the local walks and rides, but there are many more to choose from. There are also a number of events promoting outdoor activities.
Saturday, September 10, 2pm, Marsden Mechanics Hall.
Marsden Adventure Outdoors is an eight-hour festival of films, stalls and workshops with an outdoor theme.
Find out what activities and clubs are active in the area. For details and bookings visit www.electrictheatrecinema.co.uk
Sunday, September 11, 9am, Hade Edge Recreation Ground.
The Holme Valley Cycle Challenge is an annual event covering 15, 20 or 30 miles. Organised by the 1st Holme Valley Scout Group, details are available from email@example.com
Monday, September 12, 10.30am, National Trust, Old Goods Yard, Marsden.
An easy two-hour ramble with Nordic poles (no need to provide your own but a pair must be booked from www.kirklees.gov.uk/walking).
Saturday, September 17, 1.30pm, Thurstonland Cricket Club.
The Wineathlon is a nine-mile themed walk/run that takes in food and wine stops every two miles, with each station based around a different wine region of the world. Cost £19.95 – book at www.wineathlon.co.uk
Sunday, September 18, 10am, Colne Valley Leisure Centre.
This eight-mile Moonrakers Ride is described as ‘steady’ and suitable for children (who must be accompanied by an adult). Book on www.goskyride.com