What state are the Union/Forth & Clyde canal paths in?

Brandane

Remember the fallen.
Location
Costa Clyde.
Planning a trip through to deepest West Lothian tomorrow to see the girlfriend. Will be going from Ayrshire and taking the train to Glasgow. My favoured route would be along the canal paths to Linlithgow then cutting south on B roads.

Haven't been along the canal paths for a few months, because last time they were a mudbath and really out of bounds to non MTBs. Anyone know if they have improved? If not then it's the very non scenic route through Airdrie, Plains and Armadale then towards Livingston ;), since they shut the path from Airdrie to Livingston to reinstate the railway line.
 

sleekitcollie

Well-Known Member
The path from avon viaduct to winchburgh is good just now . That might change if we get some rain but for now they r good . ;)
 

Billloudon

New Member
Location
Escocia
Brandane said:
Planning a trip through to deepest West Lothian tomorrow to see the girlfriend. Will be going from Ayrshire and taking the train to Glasgow. My favoured route would be along the canal paths to Linlithgow then cutting south on B roads.

Haven't been along the canal paths for a few months, because last time they were a mudbath and really out of bounds to non MTBs. Anyone know if they have improved? If not then it's the very non scenic route through Airdrie, Plains and Armadale then towards Livingston ;), since they shut the path from Airdrie to Livingston to reinstate the railway line.
I would also be very keen to find out the condition.
I am from Ayrshire as well and aim to cycle from West coast to East coast in June. I intend using the Forth and Clyde staying over in Falkirk as about midway. I should be at Edinburgh next evening - I hope.
Let me know how it goes from your run, please.
 
Did it last year, and it was very wet...... Despite this all the tracks from Ayr to Irvine to Glasgow Loch Lomond and then across the canals to Edinburgh. All the tracks were passable with no problems at all.
 

joemaxi

New Member
I was up there earlier and the paths are fine-as said earlier,mostly packed gravel or tarmac!

Watch going through the Miley Tunnel-its a bit slippy!
 

HJ

Cycling in Scotland
Location
Auld Reekie
The Union Canal is being tarmaced from Ratho to Edinburgh, but so far the new surface only extends to the outskirts of town...
 

bauldbairn

New Member
Location
Falkirk
joemaxi said:
Watch going through the Miley Tunnel-its a bit slippy!
We called it the "Darkie" when we were kids - in Tamfourhill. :thumbsup:

The condition of the paths vary unfortunately but most are okay(passable) in the Falkirk area - from Bonnybridge to Lith'gae. :smile:
 
OP
Brandane

Brandane

Remember the fallen.
Location
Costa Clyde.
I managed a nice wee ride yesterday. From Glasgow central, went up to join the F&C canal at Bishopbriggs. Followed the canal paths to the Falkirk wheel, then the Union canal to Linlithgow. Climbed the hill to Beecraigs (nobody warned me about that!) then down into Bathgate, south through Blackburn (never saw or heard Subo :smile:) and to West Calder.

Billoudon, the paths are "ok", but depends on what kind of bike you are planning to use. I was on my Tricross and found the rough surface a bit tedious and uncomfortable after a while. Wouldn't recommend it for an all out road bike. Maybe better on a MTB or a hybrid with front suspension. Probably didn't help myself by riding on narrower than standard tyres (700 x 28) inflated to 100psi :smile:. But it is an interesting and enjoyable ride.
 

Billloudon

New Member
Location
Escocia
Brandane said:
I managed a nice wee ride yesterday. From Glasgow central, went up to join the F&C canal at Bishopbriggs. Followed the canal paths to the Falkirk wheel, then the Union canal to Linlithgow. Climbed the hill to Beecraigs (nobody warned me about that!) then down into Bathgate, south through Blackburn (never saw or heard Subo :evil:) and to West Calder.

Billoudon, the paths are "ok", but depends on what kind of bike you are planning to use. I was on my Tricross and found the rough surface a bit tedious and uncomfortable after a while. Wouldn't recommend it for an all out road bike. Maybe better on a MTB or a hybrid with front suspension. Probably didn't help myself by riding on narrower than standard tyres (700 x 28) inflated to 100psi ;). But it is an interesting and enjoyable ride.
Thanks for that.
A wee bit worried about the packed gravel for speed over the distance.
I would need to average about 12 mph to get thro' to Edinburgh before night. Is that pos?
 
OP
Brandane

Brandane

Remember the fallen.
Location
Costa Clyde.
Billloudon said:
Thanks for that.
A wee bit worried about the packed gravel for speed over the distance.
I would need to average about 12 mph to get thro' to Edinburgh before night. Is that pos?
My average for the whole trip was 11.3, and that was with a tail wind; but then I am no speed king, my usual average being between 12/13 mph on the road. You should expect your average to be a bit lower than normal when using the canal paths, partly because of the surface and also because of having to slow down for the occassional gate, pedestrians, dog walkers, other bikes etc... If you go on a nice warm summers day during the school holidays, I would imagine it could be quite busy in some stretches.
 

kewb

New Member
i despise those packed paths , they suck up your energy and grate away at your
bike ,
gimme a smooth tarmac path any day i wouldve jumped ship off such a path for an a or b road alternative if it lasted more than a few miles ,
nothing but respect for you guys pushing through that stuff .
 
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