We Went Nevis Range Mountain Biking! (What to Know First)

Nevis Range Mountain

Nevis Range is a popular mountain resort for skiing in the winter, but did you know you can visit in the summer as well? We recently had a chance to experience it in early July and ride the Ben Nevis Cable Car for some downhill cycling. Here’s everything you need to know about the Nevis Range Gondola, exploring the town of Fort William, and all about our mountain biking experience.

Our Trip to Nevis Range Mountain Resort

When planning our Scottish Highlands road trip we obviously wanted to get out into nature. So of course, we were going to make a stop at the highest mountain range in the United Kingdom!

Nevis Range Mountain Resort is a a fun destination to go skiing in the wintertime. However, during the summer it becomes a mountain bikers paradise. In fact, it has even hosted the Downhill Cycling World Cup every year since 2002. 

This seemed like the perfect place to include on our Scotland road trip to add some more adventure to an already exciting itinerary. While we were going to be hiking the Old Man of Storr and the Fairy Pools, mountain biking was just something we couldn’t pass up.

Not only would we be able to take the Nevis Range Gondola for spectacular views, but you can actually rent bikes and hit the many trails that are used for skiing in the wintertime. 

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Nevis Range Mountain

Staying at the Nevis Range Base Camp Hotel

When looking for where to stay we had a few different options. Many travelers pick the nearby town of Fort William as its full of great restaurants and accommodations. You can also include it in an epic 5 day Scotland itinerary like this one!

Just as we were deciding our plans, we noticed a new hotel had recently opened. We ended up staying at the Nevis Range Base Camp Hotel which is located right next door to the Ben Nevis Gondola. 

This was ideal as we arrived in Fort William in the late afternoon and planned to go mountain biking the following morning. It allowed us to wake up early the next day, pick up our bicycles, and get right out on the trails. 

The hotel itself was much different than many of the rustic places we would stay along our road trip. Everything was brand new at the Base Camp Hotel, with modern amenities, a spacious bathroom, and comfortable beds.

We really enjoyed our stay here and definitely recommend it to future travelers heading to the Nevis Range Mountain Resort. 

Nevis Range Base Camp

Dinner in Fort William Scotland

We had already quite a long day of driving coming from the Isle of Skye to Nevis Range. Since it was about 3pm, we chose to save the Nevis Range Gondola and mountain biking for the morning.

After checking in at the Base Camp Hotel, we made the 15 minute drive into Fort William for dinner. This is the nearest town just a short distance to Nevis Range and somewhere you may be passing through on your own Scottish Highlands road trip. 

One thing we didn’t expect was how busy it was! Many of the best restaurants you needed a reservation for and the most popular spot called “The Geographer” had a long line to get in.

After a stroll around the main street and taking in our limited options, we were able to get a seat at the Tavern Restaurant. It ended up being a great meal where we ordered fresh salmon and a steak & ale pie.

​Just be sure to plan ahead of time and make a reservation if you want to eat at some of the great restaurants in town. This especially applies to the peak summer months during the time we visited. 

Fort William Scotland Restaurant

Breakfast & Renting Mountain Bikes

We woke up the next morning well rested and ready to fully experience Britain’s highest mountain range. First, we headed to the the Pinemarten Cafe & Bar which is located next to the car park and entrance of the Ben Nevis Cable Car. They had some great coffee and food options here, and Jake even took down a Full Scottish Breakfast!

Once we were done eating it was time to go pick up our mountain bikes. This is something you’ll want to reserve in advance as they can go quickly at Nevis Range Mountain Resort in the summertime.

On their official website you can pick your exact bike out and decide which model is right for you. They had them ready to go for us with helmets and we were quickly off to the Nevis Range Gondola. 

Ben Nevis Mountain Bikes

Riding the Ben Nevis Cable Car

The tickets for the Ben Nevis Cable Car can be purchased in the main building and are good for the entire day. There was a separate entrance for mountain bikers which was around the back of the building. 

Something important to know is that six-person Gondola brings in a multitude of travelers for different reasons. Obviously, the winter sports area is home to skiing and snow sports at that time of year.

Yet in the summer people flock to Nevis Range Mountain Resort for outdoor activities like hiking. It’s also a great way to simply to take in the stunning views of the surrounding area. We would even find out it’s popular place for paragliding, too!

After we were shown how to load our bikes on the Ben Nevis Gondola we were on our way. It takes you on the scenic route up the mountain of Aonach Mor which is Britain’s 8th highest peak. The Nevis Range Gondola ride alone was worth the price from the base station, and we couldn’t wait to get to the top!

Ben Nevis Range Cable Car

Ben Nevis Cable Car

Nevis Range Mountain Biking

The first thing to know about biking at Nevis Range is that you should have some level experience. Even the easiest blue runs from the top of the Gondola will test your limits!

This was the trail we stuck to on our trip and made multiple bike rides down. The first section is completely opened, exposing the beautiful mountain views of Scotland. 

Something that makes it a little more difficult is that the path is made up of small pebbles as opposed to the usual dirt you may be used to when mountain biking. The end of the run takes you through the woods on a winding ride through nature.

Know that there are also miles of forest trails for all skill levels that start from the Gondola Station if you’re not looking to downhill ride.The main downhill track at Nevis Range Mountain resort is the black trail which we wouldn’t recommend unless you’re an expert.

This is due to the level of technical difficulty and sheer speed you’ll be traveling at heading downhill. There are also multiple wooden bridges on this trail which makes it unique from the blue one.

At the time of our visit, the World Cup track was being prepared for a contest which was taking place in early August. That wasn’t a big deal for us as we had zero plans to try out the expert summit run!

Honestly, we couldn’t believe the pros ride this whole trail in under 5 minutes. Even though we didn’t take the world cup run, it was still amazing to coast over it from above on the Ben Nevis Cable Car.

Biking Nevis Range Mountain

Nevis Range Mountain Resort Biking

Nevis Range Mountain Biking

Is Nevis Range Mountain Biking Worth It?

Yes! Whether you’re an advanced mountain biker or just coming for the superb views, Nevis Range Mountain Resort is totally worth a visit.

It’s the perfect spot for families traveling to Fort William or groups looking to take on the vast network of biking trails. Also, be sure to check out the Snowgoose Restaurant at the Ben Nevis Gondola top station for a hot coffee or tea. 

After our Nevis Range mountain biking experience we would love to come back during winter season to do some skiing in the Highlands of Scotland. It’s easy to see why some call it the outdoor capital of the UK! 

Is Nevis Range Worth Visiting

Have any questions about this article or want to share your own tips for Nevis Range mountain biking? Let us know in the comments below! 

Safe Travels,
Brigitte & Jake

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Nevis Range

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 Rental Car: The best way to get around Scotland is by rental car! We always use Discover Cars when traveling in Europe and have found some great deals by booking in advance.

Transportation: Omio is a great place to search for trains, buses, and transfers while traveling through Scotland.

 Tours: Check out Get Your Guide for activities all over Scotland. You can find everything from a Scottish Highlands tour from Edinburgh to a Loch Ness boat cruise, Harry Potter Magical Guided Walking Tour, and even chocolate making classes.

 Flights: It’s easy to find cheap flight deals using Skyscanner and Kayak. That’s how we got flights from London to Aberdeen for $30 USD and Edinburgh to Budapest for less than $80! 

 Accommodation: Compare multiple sites for the best prices such as Booking.com and Agoda. Also,  Hostelworld should be your go-to if you’re traveling on a budget. 

 Travel Insurance: Never travel abroad without protection. We’ve been using SafetyWing for the last few years on the road and they are there when we need them.

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