OverviewGisburn Forest, on the edge of the Forest of Bowland, is set in some of the most stunning scenery in Lancashire. Quaint villages pepper this beautiful landscape with a very English names like Slaidburn, Wigglesworth and Giggleswick. The landscape is that of rolling moorland and fells with its own unique character of fauna and flora, consequently classed as “An Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty”. The mountain biking in this area is excellent, Gisburn Forest being just one of the destinations. Over £180,000 has been spent on the development of routes in the forest and it has to be said that it has been money well spent.
Video of Black section
Trail DescriptionThe trails start at Cocklet Hill car park where there is a map. Navigation is very straightforward as the trails are well marked. There are family trails which are very straightforward and the red route with black sections off it which are very challenging. There is one section of the black route which has huge burms which you approach with speed. You think you are going to stall halfway up but the momentum carries you through. This is well designed and excellent fun.
Other black sections are made up of large sections of rock forming the base of the trail. These sections are very similar in design to those at Lee Quarry,not far from the area. The red route will take you round about two hours, that's without the stops to replay fun black sections! There are also some good boardwalk sections. The trail is very well designed and I reckon one of the better trail centres. Many trail centres nowadays have been flattened for the masses, this one is not one of those. Technical sections, while not extreme, certainly leave a smile on the face when cleaned. All in all a great trail.
Getting ThereGisburn Forest is close to the conurbations of Preston and Blackburn and has good access via the motorway network. From the South and Manchester, pick up the M66 which becomes the A56 through Haslingden and Accrington. Go under the M65 and head towards Clitheroe on the A6068. Turn left onto the A671 towards Clitheroe and then onto the A59. Drive through Clitheroe and turn left onto the B6478 to Waddington. Keep driving across the moors for about eight miles through Slaidburn and then on for another three miles. Turn left at the sign for the forest which will lead you to the car park after about half a mile.
From the North head for Settle along the A65. After about three miles at Long Preston turn right onto the B6478. Drive for about 6.5 miles through Wigglesworth and Tosside turning right for the forest at the sign.
Car parking is limited in the small car park but is free. Depending on the time of the year there may be a food trailer there but there are no facilities for water or washing.