Another C2C inquiry for 2022.

gavroche

Getting old but not past it
Location
North Wales
My daughter's boyfriend ( 64 ) and I ( 71 next month) were discussing doing the C2C next year before we get too old. We are planning to do it over 3 or 4 days with my wife and daughter being the support vehicle.
In view of our not so young ages, which route do you advise and what can we expect in terms of gradients? I will be using my Cube Peloton with a granny gear of 30/32.
 

DCLane

Found in the Yorkshire hills ...
My suggestion would be the Workington - Sunderland route as it's got few really steep gradients; Hartside, Crawleyside uphill and Fangs Brow (suggestion: take the road alternative in the gps route) downhill from memory. This route's about as close as the one we took: https://ridewithgps.com/routes/8298510

The last time I did it was in 2016, with 6 recovering-from-being-broken ribs and what turned out to be a broken pelvis plus split IT band/tissue damage. Therefore it needed to be a very soft route.

And yes, I was daft doing it, but my then 12yo had raised a pile of sponsorship for the health project we were visiting in Swaziland later that year.

Think about where you're going to stay / eat en route as well. We stayed at Keswick having started in the afternoon, then Alston at a B&B, so did it over 2 1/2 days whereas when I rode it in 2012 I stayed in Workington then Alston making it a 2-day trip.
 
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PaulSB

Legendary Member
It's 20+ years since I did this but my suggestion would be Whitehaven to Sunderland which was the alternative start point to Workington. It's a good route and for me the only memorable climbs were Hartside and outside of Garrigill I think.

There are two possibilities at Hartside, up the main road which is an unrelenting pig of a climb or basically head left at the bottom of Hartside and join a little back lane which joins the main road about 75% of the way up.

I've done both and for me the lane is better, short sharp ramps rather than continuous rising which I don't enjoy.

My version was all on road, worked my way round the off road stuff except for the Waskerley Way which was then a compacted railway track. You might want to check that one out.
 

Lookrider

Well-Known Member
Done this a few times on rd and mtb bikes ...live in finish area of north east ...ride those roads regular
I'm not thinking theres a great difference of workington or whitehaven to keswick
May be whitehaven is marginally prettier place to stay and easier to get to by car ...it has a abandoned railway at start to rowrah which has a tarmac surface and is rideable with road wheels..both routes have to get over-around winlatter so are similar tbere
It's well signposted all way to end..
At penrith you start to climb gradually and easy
To get up hartside I would follow the official c2c route on tbe back rds as they are very quiet and as mentioned it puts you out most of if way up hartside pass
The alternative is the unofficial route via melmerby with traffic to deal with
At hartside I would recomend going to Alston and around garrighill to nenthead as garrighill is tough climb..but very scenic
You can have a made up option at Alston and head for hexham which is downhill to the river tyne
You can then pick up the well marked hadrians way 72 more less all way along river to tynemouth
This is still a c2c but a little homemade and you miss out all the multiple hills from nenthead to Crawley side in the pennines
Being on rd bikes you will have no alternative but to go up Crawley side bank as opposed to the glorious scenery and best part if c2c at rookhope incline
The waskerley way is more than compacted railway nowadays is tarmac nearly all way and easy to do on rd wheels but be aware of pot holes covered by leaves in autumn times
There next comes options at lyzetts junction near consett
Head north and down to the tyne at dunston on another well trodden railway with great scenery .then along river to tynemouth end
Or head east to sunderland on the railway ...this one does have a couple miles where the railway was built over from consett to Anfield plain and can be a little hard to follow with crossings and detours etc just look fur the very small blue c2c stickers usually on lampposts at every junction
At Anfield plain it's around 19mile to the end back on tbe railway

So ultimately to me
Choose the start on logistics.....
If you want to avoid hills from hartside to waskerley then detour to hexham hadrians 72....
Miss out garrihill ...then its hartside to Alston to nenthead ...
Ay lyzetts junction ( just west of consett ) head north to the tyne for an easy to follow route avoiding consett to Anfield plain
Theres probly more to see and more coffee stops on this route as opposed to the Sunderland east route

Places to stay at end
Tynemouth is likely to be more appealing than Sunderland city which is awful but getting developed
The sea front from roker to seaburn is fine with lots if bnb new hotel new stack and food places ....
Theres also a glorious bike track up the coast to shields for a recovery ride morning after
Enjoy it...its an epic ride with fantastic scenery and fab places to stay ..many usual bnb but also there a lit if quirky bunk barns camp pods shepherd huts .converted ship containers
Once stayed in kiroswald bunk barns on farm complete with nesting swallow inside
 

Brandane

Rain magnet.
Location
Costa Clyde.
Way of the Roses is a cracking route. Have done it a few times now, twice west to east, and once t'other way.
A few climbs, in particular out of Pateley Bridge (in either direction) but nothing too drastic. I managed it, so it can't be that bad.
 

PaulSB

Legendary Member
If you choose Way of the Roses, which I agree is a cracking route, be very wary of the descent into Pateley Bridge west to east. I don't recall a climb out of Pateley Bridge but I'm sure there must be one.

If you go east west through Pateley Bridge don't make the mistake three of my buddies did - hangovers and English breakfast. It's a huge steep climb.

The ride through the Yorkshire Wolds is excellent. Bridlington is a pretty unpleasant place to stay. I looked around got on my bike and cycled up to Scarborough or you can get the train there.
 

T4tomo

Guru
Which would be the more scenic - The Way of The Roses or C2C? If you could do only one, which would it be?
https://www.cyclechat.net/threads/c2c-planning-whitehaven-to-teeside-ish.276552/#post-6486255
There is a map and a link on this ^^ thread to the popular various Coast to Coast routes. They all have their merits and pass through NP's AoOBs etc. some are pure road, some utilise off road tracks, some will pass through place with personal links and all very scenic
 
Which would be the more scenic - The Way of The Roses or C2C? If you could do only one, which would it be?
Tough one. The C2C has the more dramatic/bleak pennine landscapes eg Alston to the Waskerley Way. It also has some nice sections across north lakes and Eden valley. The way of the roses is prettier in my opinion eg lovely landscapes and villages out from Lancaster across to Settle, Grassington and then the Wolds, but not as remote. The C2C has more steeper hills and off road opportunities.
 

hoopdriver

Guru
Location
East Sussex
Tough one. The C2C has the more dramatic/bleak pennine landscapes eg Alston to the Waskerley Way. It also has some nice sections across north lakes and Eden valley. The way of the roses is prettier in my opinion eg lovely landscapes and villages out from Lancaster across to Settle, Grassington and then the Wolds, but not as remote. The C2C has more steeper hills and off road opportunities.
Thanks so much - I’m actually researching for a book on scenic bike routes I’ve been commissioned to write and wanted to include one of the cross country routes. I’ve done Hadrian’s Wall but that seemed something better to be walked than ridden. I wanted to get first person thoughts on which was prettier - C2C or Way of The Roses. That’s a big help. Thanks
 
OP
gavroche

gavroche

Getting old but not past it
Location
North Wales
There is a lot of information there and plenty to digest and discuss for the next few months. I really appreciate all your efforts and thank you all for that.
 

TheDoctor

Europe Endless
Moderator
Location
Stevenage
Carlisle - Newcastle is nearly coast to coast, and was easily doable by a somewhat-unfit Timelord on a Brompton.
But for the love of Invisible Sky Fairies, get a map. I relied on the National Cycle Route signposts, which delight in taking you round five sides of a hexagon, then up a mile of 1:7. DAMHIKT.
 

kenmiles

Active Member
Location
Cork, Ireland
Carlisle - Newcastle is nearly coast to coast, and was easily doable by a somewhat-unfit Timelord on a Brompton.
But for the love of Invisible Sky Fairies, get a map. I relied on the National Cycle Route signposts, which delight in taking you round five sides of a hexagon, then up a mile of 1:7. DAMHIKT.
Or Bowness on Solway - Wallsend which is coast to coast. Lovely ride or walk which I have done several times.
 

T4tomo

Guru
Or Bowness on Solway - Wallsend which is coast to coast. Lovely ride or walk which I have done several times.
full marks for "correcting" the above "nearly coast to coast" with a coast to "nearly coast". we'll give you Bowness, but Wallsend is only marginally nearer the coast than Carlisle, and not somewhere you'd want to stop. Try Tynemouth actually on the Coast and much nicer.
 

Pale Rider

Legendary Member
but Wallsend is only marginally nearer the coast than Carlisle, and not somewhere you'd want to stop
There's something in that.

I've cycled though Wallsend a few times and always hope I don't get a puncture there.

Head down, keep pedalling, and all should be well.
 
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