York to Ravenglass by train with bikes

Discussion in 'Touring and Adventure Cycling' started by Danny, 24 Aug 2007.

  1. Danny

    Danny Legendary Member

    Three of us are planning to travel from York to Ravenglass by train so we can start the Hadrian's Wall cycle route.

    There are a number of possible routes all with multiple train changes

    York->Manchester->Barrow or Lancaster->Ravenglass
    York->Leeds->Carlisle (via Settle-Carlisle line)->Ravenglass

    The problem is that all of these involve going on trains which officially only take two bikes at a time. In my experience most guards are usually pretty flexible about this and will allow more on if there is room, though you do occasionally get a guard who is can be really difficult.

    Does anyone have recent experience of travelling with bikes on any of these routes. Are there any which we should avoid because there is genuinely limited cycle space, lots of cyclings, or a preponderence of difficult guards.
  2. Can't answer your Q re trains, but we did Hadrian's CW last week (me, the Mrs and a couple of friends who, without being uncharitable, it would be fair to describe as 'ride bikes occasionally' rather than 'keen cyclists') and we'd all recommend it.

    Feel free to PM me if you want to ask anything about the route or whatever.
  3. Hover Fly

    Hover Fly Lover of the bunny

    You've missed the route I would choose, York, Leeds, Carnforth, Barrow, Ravenglass*. Northern Trains all the way, which I usually find better than TPE. for bikes, but try to avoid the really busy trains leaving Lancaster or Carnforth at 4pm to 6pm, also the trains taking workers to and from Sellafield. I live(d) in Ulverston on the Carnforth to Cumbrian Coast line and used the trains 2 or 3 times a week.

    *Leave York at 07:06 arr. Ravenglass 12:14 changing at Leeds and Carnforth.
  4. OP

    Danny Legendary Member

    Thanks Hover Fly. I'll definitely check this out as an opton - once I've worked out where the heck Carnforth is.
  5. Tim Bennet.

    Tim Bennet. Entirely Average Member

    S of Kendal
    It's at the centre of the Universe. And if you are travelling with someone appropriate you might have time during your change at Carnforth to re-enact some of the scenes from Brief Encounter in the Station Cafe.
  6. DLB

    DLB Senior Member

    i can't comment about your particular route but i managed to get from Sheffield to Southport by train on Saturday morning. I'd prebooked the transpennine express from sheffield to Manchester by telephone and had no problems on this train. The second train was run by northern trains and we were lucky we got on with the bike in MAnc. as it got VERY full. If we'd have tried at any other station i don't think we'd have got on. The worst thing was that Northern trains do not let you prebook. Annoying!

    Anyway we got to Southport and i've just spent the last two days travelling from s'port to Glossop on the transpennine trail (and i'm knackered). Home tomorrow (Rotherham) and then onwards East to Hornsea. A brilliant experience so far.
  7. OP

    Danny Legendary Member

    All male group I'm afraid - though I guess that should not be a barrier in this day and age!
  8. Mankymitts

    Mankymitts New Member

    Did the Hadrian's Wall cycle thing in June. Came down from Glasgow with Virgin and had no problems with the bikes on the train. Then got the train from Carlisle to Ravenglass, it did have space for about 4 - 6 bikes. Got the impression it would be a rare day when that train got busy so would not imagine it would be a problem getting your bikes on it.
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