The Cheshire Ring

I am hoping to complete the Cheshire ring, a 97 mile journey along canals in a day within the next few weeks looking for general advice from experienced cyclist.i have only been able to find one report of a cycling group that have done this a few years back it took them around 12 hours to complete including rest stops.

any advice would be appreciated
 

si_c

Guru
Location
Wirral
12 hours seems about right for canal tow-paths. Progress is a bit slower and the surface tends to be rougher in places.

Not done it myself as I avoid tow paths where possible, not a huge fan.

If you live locally why not try the riding the different sections to independently to see what the surfaces are like and how much progress you make as well as possible rest stops?
 
Location
London
questions if you don't mind OP.

Is this a promoted/recognised route? - I ask as I have never heard of it.
Any particular reason you want to use just canals?
(Cheshire in my experience is hardly noted for wild peaks, some might call it a tad boring, and there are some very nice peaceful lanes)
 

fossyant

Ride It Like You Stole It!
Location
South Manchester
PS The Peak Forest Canal can get quite muddy, it's been fairly dry until recently, so expect a fair amount of mud given it's been quite wet.
 

IaninSheffield

Veteran
Location
Sheffield, UK
I am hoping to complete the Cheshire ring, a 97 mile journey along canals in a day within the next few weeks looking for general advice from experienced cyclist.i have only been able to find one report of a cycling group that have done this a few years back it took them around 12 hours to complete including rest stops.

any advice would be appreciated
As you'll doubtless appreciate, a lot will depend on your experience of and capability with cycling on similar terrain. Have you cycled any significant distance on towpaths before? It can be swift (in urban areas where the towpath has been developed) or excruciatingly slow out in the boondocks where towpaths can be narrow, muddy or incessantly interspersed with tree roots. Type of bike can help or hinder in these matters. Cycling from London to Nottingham along the canal network taught me these lessons the hard way.

I've narrowboated the Cheshire Ring and it's certainly an interesting and varied route. As a cyclist you'll experience that variety and interest in a different way. Around Manchester and its environs, the towpath is generally in reasonable condition, although in the city centre, expect having to do some switching back and forth from bank to bank, and onto and off roads occasionally - this can slow progress. Many of the western sections (Trent & Mersey) and eastern (Macclesfield) are wonderful to pass through, but some stretches of towpath will be ... sticky!

If I were going to do this, I'd probably budget two days ... but then, I am sadly no longer in the flush of youth! Are you in a position to be able to assess whether you're as fit/capable as the cyclists in the group whose adventure you spotted? If you are keen to do it in a single day and think you can manage it in 12 hours, you might also want to consider whether you'll have 12 hours of daylight - canal towpaths in the dark become even more challenging, even with good bike lights.

Finally, you're probably aware of the Canal & River Trust's resources for cyclists, but if not - https://canalrivertrust.org.uk/enjoy-the-waterways/cycling.

Finally, finally, have a great trip and please do come back and share your adventure.
 
I am hoping to complete the Cheshire ring, a 97 mile journey along canals in a day within the next few weeks looking for general advice from experienced cyclist.i have only been able to find one report of a cycling group that have done this a few years back it took them around 12 hours to complete including rest stops.

any advice would be appreciated


I have done this route by narrow boat.Cant comment on the state of the tow paths Numerous locks which on a bike means a few ups and downs.Condition of tow paths along the canals is quite varied From a boating point of view I would recommend this rout as plenty of variety.
 
I'm geographically ignorant but will add a plus one to the wise advice above relating to surfaces and bike suitability. "Paths" can be rough and muddy.
I'd also add two other factors;
Day of the week: I understand that towpaths etc. are a little heavier trafficked now than before - that's bound to have an effect on timing
Time of day: A 12 hour day could see you travelling at less than optimum brightness - not always ideal with a body of water to one side ^_^

Best of luck!
 
Location
London
By the by, for canal hounds, I recently read this:

https://blackwells.co.uk/bookshop/p...-Canal-by-Anthony-Burton-author/9781473893238

which I am pretty sure uses bits of this route.

Recently re-issued, originally came out at the beginning of the 70s, which gives it an interesting perspective.

At the time the author lamented the tarting up of pubs with food options (seem to recall he has a bit on the perils of poncified chicken in a basket) - must be having a fit now.

Recommended - well written, not nerdy, or only nerdy enough to make it interesting.
 
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