Distance: 1358 metres, Ascent: 148 metres, route map
This is about the shortest possible route from Sowerby Bridge up to Norland Moor. Consequently the climb is tough right from the start but that’s not the full story. Don’t let any subsequent moments of respite fool you because every time things get easier it’s only so that the ride can get tougher again further along the way.
Station Road in Sowerby Bridge takes you from the busy A58 towards the station. Norland Road is the right turn at the first crossroads and this is where the climb starts. OK, it’s not tough from the very first turn of the pedals but it soon gets steeper and then steeper again. Before you know it you’ll be at the junction where Norland Road meets Bogart Lane. It’s less complicated than it looks on the map – the left turn into Hope St is very minor – and it’s just a question of keeping straight on and up.
Ahead of you, and above Bogart Lane is an impressive 3-storey Victorian terrace. You need to cycle to the end of Boggart Lane then take a sharp left beneath this terrace to continue up Sowerby Croft Lane. You’re now looking back down over Sowerby Bridge and the road is still rising steeply in front of you. It curves round to teh right and then up between stone walls with fields all around you. Keep going because you’re not there yet. The road continues to wind its way up the hillside rising all the while each cluster of houses bringing hope that the end is in sight but it’s only when you hit a flat stretch of road have you made it. Cruise along here to where the road finally stops at a crossroads.