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Alpacas and ale houses on a 50-mile circular

Illustration by Glenn at Eleven.

Some hardy souls will no doubt attempt to recreate the full Yorkshire stage of the 2014 Tour de France. For a more manageable bike ride at the Sheffield end of the route, we suggest this circuit out to the Peak District, taking in lovely pubs, local oddities and splendid buildings along the way. It's still a challenging ride in spectacular hilly terrain. But unlike the riders in the peleton, you'll have time to stop off for an ice-cream, eggs on toast or a cheeky half of an excellent local ale.

Start in the east of Sheffield near Malin Bridge (1), beginning with a brisk ride up Loxley Road and straight into the lush valley (2).

Pass Damflask Reservoir (3). Turn right up Hoar Stones/Sugworth Road, past Dale Dyke Reservoir. You're now in the area known locally as the Strines: tough, exposed and hilly – the training ground of many a hardened Yorkshire cyclist.

Turn right and drop down onto the A57/Snake Pass and follow it down to the Ladybower (4) and Ewden reservoirs.

Turn left onto the A6013/Ashopton Road and head through to Bamford and the edge of Hathersage village (5).

Let's do some climbing now and turn right off the B6001 (just before the excellent Plough Inn) and up to Abney (6).

Pass down sleepy Great Hucklow and bear left onto a stretch of busy road (A623) to refuel on the epic big, bigger and biggest breakfast on offer at Yonderman Cafe (7).

We'll skirt down the maze of little roads down to Litton now, and fly down the super quick switchback Bottomhill Road into the old Victorian mills of Cressbrook and the stunning scenery of Monsal Head. Now you've got your breath back, we'll head back up through pretty Little and Great Longstone and up into the plague village of Eyam (8).

Let's begin the long climb back to Sheffield, grinding through Grindleford (refuel with some Yorkshire parkin at the legendary Grindleford Station Cafe) and carry on past the Longshaw Estate (9) and up to Fox House.

Nearly there now. Just time to sample a bit of Moonshine ale at the Norfolk Arms on Ringinglow Road, a cyclist-friendly pub with great views down into Sheffield.

And no, it's not the ale taking effect; the fields really are full of grazing alpacas – the Mayfield Valley (10) is home to the Mayfield Alpaca Farm. They seem to like the view too!

For a more comprehensive route map, we recommend the excellent Goldeneye Travel Guides.

Written by Glenn Thornley



Start: Loxley Road, Malin Bridge, S6 4TE (marked on map below).
Distance: Approx. 50 miles.
Route map: GPX export via Strava.
Where to eat & drink: A pint in the beer garden at Hathersage's Plough Inn.
Big breakfasts at Yonderman Cafe.
Chip butties and Yorkshire parkin at Grindleford Station Cafe.
Cyclist-friendly pub the Norfolk Arms.

Originally published on Our Favourite Places.

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