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Langcliffe Scar.JPG

The Etape du Dales 2024

Short Route

With The Etape du Dales 2024 almost upon us we’re getting down to the finer details of what you can expect when you visit the Yorkshire Dales for this year’s event.

Read on for information about the short route, which has undergone some big changes this year to make a new challenge for the Etape du Dales.

The Short Route Revealed!

Starting from Horton in Ribblesdale, the home of the iconic 3 peaks challenge, this year's event starts with a benign roll out down Ribblesdale towards Settle... but the easy riding doesn't last for long. After just 8km the route bears sharp right in the village of Langcliffe on to the first climb of the day Langcliffe Scar. At 2.3km with an average gradient of 7.8% and a max. gradient of 18% this is stiff opening for this year's  Etape du Dales. Continuing over the top the route heads for Malham Tarn - a unique geological feature at 377m the highest marl lake in the UK and one of only 8 upland alkaline lakes in Europe.

Passing Malham Tarn on the west the route climbs the short sting of Nab End before descending in to the beautiful village of Arncliffe, the original setting for Emmerdale Farm and recently the scene of the classic James Herriot series All Creatures Great and Small.

Picking its way down the beautiful valley of Littondale alongside the river Skirfare the route makes it's way to the picturesque village of Kettlewell.

Now, rising from the Wharfe valley in leg stinging steps is the gruesome ascent of Park Rash. The first step is not Park Rash itself but just a precursor at a mere 22% before you descend back to Cam Gill with the actual climb of Park Rash looming in the distance. The start is the hardest, as you have a section of 25% gradient to negotiate. If you can, take the hairpins at the widest – certainly avoid going on the inside, where it is steepest. Used in the Tour de Yorkshire, see how your Strava times compare to the World Tour Pros!

Following this lung stripping epic, take your time to enjoy the magnificent descent of Coverdale. A narrow twisty road so beware, but if you get the chance to look the views are absolutely stunning.

The first feed station will be a welcome sight at the village hall in Wensley (57 km). Take your time for a well earned break before setting off for the next episode.

Contouring the Wensleydale valley the route now takes you across to Redmire where it leaves the long route and continues along the valley side through Askrigg - setting for the 1978 series of All Creatures Great and Small, before turning south in to Hawes and another welcome break at the Wensleydale Creamery Visitor centre (85km).


Leaving Hawes the route now follows Widdale as it climbs steadily to it's peak at Newby Head (438m) before dropping to Ribblehead and the famous viaduct on the Settle to Carlisle railway line. Here you can admire the view and grab an ice cream (you deserve it!), or turn left and press on, it's now just 8km to the finish.


With the end now in sight, under the imposing gaze of the towering peak of Pen-y-ghent it's not long before you're welcomed back to Horton in Ribblesdale!

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