The on-road route is a significantly revised and re-vitalised version of the former Cumbria Cycleway, which was opened in 1980 but, over the next 15 years, became too busy with traffic to be promoted as a recreational cycleway.
The new Lakes and Dales Loop uses quieter lanes, following the boundary of the Lake District National Park on its north, west, and south sides. It completes the loop by linking the Lune and Eden Valleys to the east, and passing through extensions into the Yorkshire Dales National Park.
The aim is to promote the loop as an internationally recognized cycle route, offering both experienced leisure cyclists and 'hard challenge' riders the chance to experience a range of landscapes, heritage, and culture.
The suggested start and finish point at Penrith is easily accessible for cyclists travelling to Cumbria by train via the West Coast mainline.
A downloadable map of the 190-mile route is available at www.lakesdalesloop.co.uk