The longer days mean it’s time for new and experienced cyclists to shake off the winter blues, get back in the saddle and get pedalling.
Cycling in the Peak District National Park is a gentle way for people to improve their health and well-being whilst exploring and enjoying beautiful countryside.
National Park cycle hire centres at Ashbourne, Parsley Hay near Hartington, and Derwent by the reservoirs, are now open seven days a week from 9:30am.
Charlotte Bowler, cycle hire centres manager, said: “This is a good time of year for cycling – the countryside is coming back to life after winter and you see something different everyday.
“I love cycling along the Tissington Trail and spotting ‘lamb’s tails’ on the hazel trees, and seeing the pussy willow coming into bud. It really cheers you up to see primroses along the way too.”
For people who have not visited the cycle hire centres before, friendly staff are on hand to suggest different traffic free routes to suit their needs.
At Ashbourne, experience the 350m long tunnel which joins the traffic free Tissington Trail to the town, before pedalling back towards the historic village of Tissington to discover quirky shops and local refreshments.
From Parsley Hay, enjoy traffic free, flat surface cycling with a choice of the High Peak Trail or the Tissington Trail to follow. A visit to the preserved Hartington signal box is just a short ride from Parsley Hay towards Tissington.
At Derwent, there is a choice of routes both on and off tarmac. Whichever terrain people choose they will discover beautiful expanses of open water of the 100 year old reservoirs, dramatic turreted dam walls, woodland against a backdrop of high moorland hills.
A range of bikes are available to hire to suit all ages at every centre. At Parsley Hay there is an extended range for people with disabilities, including mobility scooters, tricycles, hand-cranked and wheelchair bikes.
Charlotte said: “Why not try something different and hire a tandem? Or treat yourself to a new bike as we have fully serviced ex-hire cycles for sale too.
“If you’ve just dug your bike out of the shed bring it in to one of our centres for a spring maintenance check. Cycle maintenance and servicing is available at all three centres.”
Contact the cycle hire centres direct for information about bikes for sale or to book maintenance checks.
More information and prices at www.peakdistrict.gov.uk/cyclehire
For people who would rather stick to two feet than two wheels information on guided walks with national park rangers is available at www.peakdistrict.gov.uk/rangerwalks