Coniston Adventure Loop Challenge

A challenging one day adventure around Coniston and surrounding fells

The Coniston Valley is no stranger to speed records, with Donald Campbell using Coniston Water for trial runs and then an attempt to break the World Water Speed Record in the Bluebird. This adventurous challenge will give you the opportunity to set your own speed record on a journey around the valley by mountain bike, foot, and includes a 37m abseil to really add to the challenge along the way.

We starting above the beautiful village of Coniston, directly at the foot of the biggest mountain in the area, the Old Man of Coniston, with views across Coniston Water. The first part of the journey starts by mountain bike, using two wheels to gently ascend south west along the Walna Scar road, before descending down fun trails mountain bike trails which are technically straight forward, into the valley. Using a mixture of rural roads, cycle track, and simple off road tracks, we continue our way along the shores of Coniston Water, before ascending further north into the mountains, to reach Cathedral Quarry. Left over from the Lake District’s industrial past, this astounding but well hidden quarry feels like something out of a J R R Tolkien novel, featuring a large cave, a quarry and numerous underground tunnels. This is the site of our 37 meter abseil down its biggest face. From here we get back on the bikes and head through the picturesque valley of Little Langdale, and up one of the Lake Districts infamous mountain pass’s – Wrynose Pass. From the top of the pass we leave our bikes for the last time, continuing the final stage of the adventure back by foot. Walking southwards down the spine of the Coniston fells, traversing over the summits of Great Carrs and Swirl How, this spectacular ridge walk and its stunning views across the Lake District mountains leads to the final objective, the Old Man of Coniston. From the highest summit in this part of the National Park, we descend back down to our start point, in a target time of within 10 hours.

We recommend that in the lead-up to this challenge, participants work on building up their stamina with weekly cardio-vascular exercise of a minimum of 1 hour per day, 5 days per week to build up their calf + quad muscles. It would also be beneficial to do at least one training walk if possible on broken rough terrain walking for at least 8 hours. From an average fitness start point it is likely you will need to commit to a 3-4 month fitness training programme to maximise your chance of success. We can help you prepare for this event – for  information about our  pre-selection / training day click here.


Stage 1 - Cycling

Setting off from the car park above Coniston Village, we head south west to gently ascend the old stone track known as the Walna Scar road, traversing directly under the shadow of The Old Man of Coniston. After a short distance we start our decent into the valley, running alongside Torver Beck. This decent involves using mostly stone tracks and trails, with some easy technical mountain bike sections, providing plenty of interest and lots of fun. This brings us just outside of Torver, where a short section of road leads onto a cycle path, taking us along the shores of Coniston, past the pier, to its north end. More short sections of road, simple off road tracks, and cycle trail take us to the steep climb out of the main Coniston valley, along a small secluded valley to Tilberthwaite. From here we continue through a wooded track to reach the access point of Cathedral Quarry, situated in the woods just above Little Langdale. Here we leave the bikes for a short while ready for the next challenge.
Distance 16.7km, Ascent 327m, Descent 443m, Target Time 3 hrs, Terrain – tarmac lanes, cycle track, simple off road tracks.

Stage 2 - 37m Abseil

A very short but steep walk from where we leave the bikes takes us through woodland to the top of Cathedral Quarry. On arrival the ground opens up below your feet to reveal this hidden feature. An appreciation of the exposure from this part of the challenge can now be felt. After abseiling into the bottom, a walk through one of the underground tunnels takes us back out, from where the short decent back to the bikes is made.

Stage 3 - Cycling

After being reunited with the bikes, the challenge continues by two wheels. Over the river and into Little Langdale, we now start the accent of Wrynose Pass to the Three Shire Stones at its top. On arrival we leave behind the bikes for the last time ready to continue the last stage of the journey.
Distance 5.2km, Ascent 347m, Descent 64m, Target Time 1-1.5hrs, Terrain – simple off road tracks. tarmac roads.

Stage 4 - Walking

From the Three Shire Stones at the top of Wrynose Pass, we start to ascend steeply towards the summit of Great Carrs. From the summit we continue south along the ridgeline, admiring the beautiful surroundings, until reaching The Old Man of Coniston’s summit at its end. The final decent is now made to the finish of the challenge, just above the village of Coniston.
Distance 8.2km, Ascent 591m, Descent 762m, Target Time 4hrs, Terrain – rough mountain paths.

Key Information

  • Advance booking required, minimum 8 weeks notice
  • Minimum group size 8, or reduced number by prior arrangement
  • Bring your own biking and hiking gear
  • We have First Aid and emergency equipment and are qualified to use it
  • Meeting point is Coniston or alternative location by prior arrangement
  • We can arrange transfers from Oxenholme Railway Station if required

Package Includes

  • Cycling, walking, abseiling with experienced and licensed guides
  • Bike and helmet hire, abseiling equipment
  • Accommodation for two nights
  • Breakfasts and packed lunches
  • Training guidance information
  • Personal kit list and advisory service
  • Support transportation as required
  • 2-way radio communication – all staff
  • Trekking poles and head torches if required
  • Cotswold Outdoor Voucher – 15% discount
  • Photographic highlights of your event uploaded to Dropbox 
  • Local information plus second to none service with passionate staff!

Duration: 1 Day

Activities: Cycling, Walking and Abseil

Suitable for: Private or corporate teams looking for a charity fundraiser, personal development and/or team building event.

Comments: A medium level challenge based around the Coniston fells and suitable for mixed ability groups. Participants require a level of cycling experience; however, participants do not require any prior abseiling or mountain walking experience.

Prices from: £275

Call: 017687 75337

Booking Enquiry

Package Prices


From £300

Guest House – bed & breakfast + packed lunch
15% off Cotswold voucher
Head torches and Trekking poles included
Price is per person

Enquire now


From £275

Hostel – bed & breakfast + packed lunch
15% off Cotswold voucher
Head torches and Trekking poles included
Price is per person

Enquire now


From £325

Hotel – bed & breakfast + packed lunch
15% off Cotswold voucher
Head torches and Trekking poles included
Price is per person

Enquire now

You are donating to : Fix The Fells

How much would you like to donate?
£10 £20 £30
Would you like to make regular donations? I would like to make donation(s)
How many times would you like this to recur? (including this payment) *
Name *
Last Name *
Email *
Additional Note