In July 2015, bona fide mountain bike legend Steve Peat and cross country racer Annie Last helped to open the Lady Canning’s mountain bike trail. Designed and built by Bike Track, this 1.4km blue-graded trail is packed with berms, drop-offs and rollers guaranteed to put a smile on the face of mountain bikers of every persuasion and skill level. In the words of Steve Peat, "it’s an awesome ride!"
In true Sheffield style, the trail was entirely built with funds raised by mountain bikers and local businesses, making it the first fully crowd-funded project in the country. Originally the brain-child of mountain bike advocacy group Ride Sheffield, who found willing allies in Sheffield City Council, it went from rough sketch to reality in a little over two years – a remarkable effort by all concerned.
Inspired by the local mountain bike community’s readiness to put their hand in their pocket, Sheffield-based outdoor megastore Go Outdoors decided to get involved, contributing £60,000 for a further downhill section and a linking flow trail.
And to everyone’s astonishment, Cooking On Gas duly opened on 8 April 2017. Built in the freezing cold of February, it was successfully camouflaged and kept top secret in order to allow the trail to settle and harden. Again a blue grade trail, it has a different character to Blue Steel. While the latter is packed with features, Cooking on Gas is a less intense ride featuring sculpted berms and an emphasis on flow. It has become an instant classic.
Directly connected to the city centre via a short ride along the Peak Park cycle route and situated on the edge of Houndkirk Moor, the trail is in an ideal location, combining the best of city and country. It has quickly become a firm favourite with local riders and there have already been thousands of descents by hundreds of riders.
Big thanks to Ride Sheffield, and the city's mountain biking community for crowdfunding the track, as well as to major sponsor Go Outdoors, Sheffield City Council, Cotic, Avanti Conveyors and Norton Mayfield Architects.
If you like the trail, you’ll probably want to contribute to the next project at the Redmires plantation.