Embsay Crag Mountain Bike Route

Mountain biking Yorkshire dalesOverview

This mountain biking route contains the best descent in the Yorkshire Dales! It’s not a huge ride but is very rewarding and packs a lot in. It has some challenging climbs and some brilliant descents. Definitely recommended!

Start Point

There is a free car park at Embsay reservoir  which is also at the bottom of the final descent so a great place to base yourself for this circuit.


The first part of the route is a warm up on the road until you take a left going west onto mountain biking embsay cragBog Lane. There is a steepish road climb before you hit the first bridleway of the day and proper climb. It’s a grassy gradual climb that just misses the top of Flasby Fell and has a super quick, short grassy descent down to a gate.

Next is a great fast descent that weaves a path over rocks and through ruts, twisting and turning eventually down to a stream and through a farm into Flasby.

Quick spin on the road to Hetton and down a short, fast and narrow bridleway (can be full of nettles in the summer) to take you into Rylstone where you re-join the road briefly.

Next you leave the road and take the stone double track up on to Bardon Moor. Steep and challenging climb followed by some great man made singletrack which can be ridden fast and is wicked fun.

mountain biking yorkshire dalesThe climb then seems to go on forever but there is a sweet stone double track with some loose corners to bring you out onto the road above Embsay. Here you can either roll down the road or take in some more off-road sections by going straight on. It’s worth doing in the dry but if it’s really wet avoid.

Now comes the highlight of the Yorkshire Dales: Embsay Crag. There is a tricky tech climb over some loamy and rocky trails which brings you out on the top. Take in the view and see if you can spy your car in the car park below. Collect your thoughts and go for it!!!

Pick your way over the rocky outcrops, through some ruts and you start picking up speed as the gradient increases. Steep left hander, little traverse, steep hairpin to the right followed by another traverse before it opens out and you get some good speed on the final sections. So, so, so fast and then a gentle cruise back to the car.


GPX – coming soon

Map – coming soon

Fancy a mountain biking break? Have a look our breaks.