Longest down hill in the UK?

General cycling advice ( NOT technical ! )
glueman
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Re: Longest down hill in the UK?

Postby glueman » 21 Oct 2009, 9:45pm

The Tissington trail (ex-railway line) is slightly downhill almost all the way from Parsley Hay to Ashbourne. I won't say you'd never have to pedal in 13 miles but with a breeze on your back it can feel like riding a moped - just the odd twiddle on the flat bits and a steady 20 mph without breaking sweat. Which if you've ridden 13 miles of rough surface slightly uphill into a headwind to get there, you'll certainly deserve.

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benm
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Re: Longest down hill in the UK?

Postby benm » 22 Oct 2009, 7:17am

JohnW wrote:Until Calderdale erected the sign, I'd always thought of Hartside Fell, in Cumbria, as being longer - but maybe there is a short stretch of flat on Hartside, somewhere between top and bottom. It always feels longer.

I remember riding up the west side of Hartside on the A686 and down the east - 3 miles up and 5 miles down ISTR which is a good ratio in my book. Looking at the OS map the downhill has sections that may well be flat.... I do remember not having to pedal much :)

B.

mr bajokoses
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Re: Longest down hill in the UK?

Postby mr bajokoses » 22 Oct 2009, 9:26am

JohnW wrote:Coming down Cragg Vale isn't all honey and roses, despite few side roads. It still has idiots who reverse out of hidden garages, and white vans that park on the outside of blind bends. Don't try any descent records on it !!


Also watch out for the nutters coming the other way and deciding to overtake straight towards you. I hate it when that happens.

Baritono
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Re: Longest down hill in the UK?

Postby Baritono » 16 Nov 2009, 9:45pm

Hello folks

I cycled the length of the Outer Hebrides in about 2001, 2002. Though I came back on the ferry to (and train from) Oban from Lochboisdale, Barra, I got to Stornoway by cycling to Ullapool from Garve (nearest point of the Kyle of Lochalsh train line from Inverness), a distance of around 30 miles. The last 12 miles were (fairly) easy after descending from the highland plateau past the breathtaking Corrieshalloch Gorge and the Measach Falls, as they follow the side of Loch Broom (a sea loch) down to Ullapool - but it was a slow, steady climb from Garve to the far end of Loch Glascarnoch and the start of that descent! - as in, around 20 miles. Loch Glascarnoch itself is something like five miles long (and now checking on the OS map) lies around 260m above sea level - Garve is at around 70m. The highest point on that ride was about a mile further on from the far end of Loch Glascarnoch, at 279m - not for the novice maybe but certainly well within the reach of most touring cyclists - and then it would be 17 miles back to Garve. Not a steep drop, but a long one!

The caveats - clearly beside Loch Glascarnoch the height is going to stay pretty constant, and may go up and down by several metres a few times in those five miles, and I won't swear that the ride up to the dam wall level was a constant rise, though memory suggests it may have been - but even discounting the last six miles past the loch, that would still give a pretty constant climb of eleven miles! - or downhill, if you did it in reverse. Trouble is, you've either got to climb it first to get to the start (not a bad ride if you like the remoteness of Scotland as I do), or get there from elsewhere - and it's a long way to Ullapool from anywhere else any other way! Also I notice in the daily weather statistics on the back page of the Yorkshire Post (highest, lowest temps, rainfall, sunshine etc) that Loch Gloscarnoch gets more than its fair share of 'coldest in the UK' citations.. as does Altnaharra (20 miles south of Tongue and similarly accessible.. have been wanting to get there for many years!..)

Either which way.. please give me a shout if you know of any competitors! On another vein, who's cycled down Slack Hill between Matlock and Chesterfield in Derbyshire, a one-mile of one-in-seven? I've both cycled up it (wow..) and down it (freewheeling as I'd spin out pedalling..) reaching 51mph, though if I was carrying luggage I may have been able to top this! Anyone know of a better site for a terminal cyclingvelocity attempt? With due consideration for the 'terminal' implications.. :lol:

Cheers again! Baritono

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braz
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Re: Longest down hill in the UK?

Postby braz » 16 Nov 2009, 10:19pm

The ten-plus years since Labour came to power.

regards to all, Braz.

travelling
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Re: Longest down hill in the UK?

Postby travelling » 16 Nov 2009, 11:21pm

Longest down hill in the UK?......marriage
I have the lightest bike in the world....then I put my fattest body in the world on it...the only pounds that have been lost are from my bank account

Gearoidmuar
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Location: Cork, Ireland. Corcaigh, Éire má tá Gaeilge agat.

In France..

Postby Gearoidmuar » 17 Nov 2009, 6:59am

My friends and I, about 12 years ago cycled from Barcelonette to the Cime de la Bonette (Col de Restefond), the highest pass in France. A scenic loop attached to a high pass, really. 2802m. We then cycled the 100 miles to Nice, all downhill. Now M.le Grenouille has us there!!

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Mick F
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Re: Longest down hill in the UK?

Postby Mick F » 17 Nov 2009, 7:38am

Baritono wrote:Anyone know of a better site for a terminal cyclingvelocity attempt? With due consideration for the 'terminal' implications......

Coming off Dartmoor down Pork Hill towards Tavistock is a good 'un. I managed 52mph.
Mick F. Cornwall

JohnW
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Re: Longest down hill in the UK?

Postby JohnW » 17 Nov 2009, 11:29am

braz wrote:The ten-plus years since Labour came to power.

regards to all, Braz.


Yeah - I know what you mean, Iraq and all that. But the worst thing they've done is continue with Thatcher's economic and fiancial policies - privatisations and all that. Thatcher set all this up.

Let's stick to hills - they're a darned sight more pleasant than Thatcher and it's legacy.

JohnW
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Re: Longest down hill in the UK?

Postby JohnW » 17 Nov 2009, 11:38am

Mick F wrote:
Baritono wrote:Anyone know of a better site for a terminal cyclingvelocity attempt? With due consideration for the 'terminal' implications......

Coming off Dartmoor down Pork Hill towards Tavistock is a good 'un. I managed 52mph.


Being of a catious - timorous even - nature, I'd never knowingly exceeded 50mph before talk of theses things started on the Forum (another thread, some time ago), but the other day, just for the sake of it and with the lambs and ewes now separated, I let it go down Fleet Moss. I chickened out eventually, but my computer told me that I'd done 54.8mph before I did.

The bike was amazingly smooth and stable.

A member of the Huddersfield Section (when we were allowed to use the word "section" in CTC circles) claims 71mph down there. That's not for me though.

These high maximums don't affect your average speed overall on a decent length ride.

Baritono
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Re: Longest down hill in the UK?

Postby Baritono » 17 Nov 2009, 11:46pm

Cheers Mick and John. Now I've found where Fleet Moss is (a quick googling) I cycled down there on Friday! Didn't pedal as it was a little bumpy to say the least, but did have full luggage on the bike - topped out at 47mph. Don't know Pork Hill though (or for that matter, much of the West Country.. ) but shall look it up if I'm in the area! Have to do Rosedale Chimney too sometime, not that that's very long.. and I'll be going up it, not down!
My vote is still for Slack Hill though as the gradient is very smooth, as is the road surface, and the descent is straight for the mile it drops - and for the rise on the other side too, meaning there's no need to judge any heroic last-minute braking at the end of the descent! may put me full panniers on and fit a 53-tooth chainring to my tourer and give it another go sometime..

Thanks also to Braz for a lateral-thinking approach to the issue. You can always rely on cyclists to find a way of solving a problem that others would not have thought of.. ;-)

Cheers

Baritono

thirdcrank
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Re: Longest down hill in the UK?

Postby thirdcrank » 18 Nov 2009, 12:10am

I seem to remember the last time we discussed fast descents, somebody mentioned Garrowby Hill on the A 166 (the road for us Wezzies to go to Brid) A class road - no stray sheep wandering about - out in the open country, long reasonably straight downhill swoop. Not particularly high (200M?) at the top and the prevailing westerly wind blowing the wrong way but with the right wind it's the place to get up to a fair speed safely and there is an escape lane for runaways.

Gang warily - this was not far from where I am talking about.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/nort ... 359720.stm

irc
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Re: Longest down hill in the UK?

Postby irc » 18 Nov 2009, 12:28am

thirdcrank wrote:It's a long time since I rode there but what about the old A 74 up to Beattock Summit (This is the Night Mail crossing the Border..... Pulling up Beattock, a steady climb: The gradient's against her, but she's on time. JMB O Level English 1961 :oops: ) I remember several long rides up there but only once riding down - after staying at Wanlochhead SYHA in 1963 (Highest in Scotland?) We seemed to be freewheeling all the way to Gretna, but that may just the view through rose-tinted specs.



It sounded like a candidate to me. Checking it out though it's "only" 10 miles from the village of Beattock up to the summit. What's more checking the elevation profile in Bikeley it's not a continous uphill there are a few short descents on the way up.
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JohnW
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Re: Longest down hill in the UK?

Postby JohnW » 18 Nov 2009, 3:33am

I remember this song from my younger days - sung by the grandparents' generation :

"The longest mile
is the last mile home
when you've been away......"

Can't remember any more of it, but it doesn't specify whether it's uphill or down. The last uphill on my rides when I've been north/north west/west is the climb from Keelham up to the Mountain (you'd need local knowledge for that) which eventually brings you past the highest Board (local authority) School in England, and close to what was the highest tram terminus in Britain, and with 120+ miles under your belt - it's long. At the most, only about a third of a mile though, and certainly not steep.

But hey you Huddersfield chaps - what if you live at the top of Cinderhills and you're coming home up/down the Holme Valley??

thirdcrank
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Re: Longest down hill in the UK?

Postby thirdcrank » 18 Nov 2009, 7:23am

JohnW wrote:I remember this song from my younger days - sung by the grandparents' generation :

"The longest mile
is the last mile home
when you've been away......"

Can't remember any more of it, but it doesn't specify whether it's uphill or down. The last uphill on my rides when I've been north/north west/west is the climb from Keelham up to the Mountain (you'd need local knowledge for that) which eventually brings you past the highest Board (local authority) School in England, and close to what was the highest tram terminus in Britain, and with 120+ miles under your belt - it's long. At the most, only about a third of a mile though, and certainly not steep.

But hey you Huddersfield chaps - what if you live at the top of Cinderhills and you're coming home up/down the Holme Valley??


THE LAST MILE HOME *

The longest mile, the sweetest mile,
The last mile home

The longest mile is the last mile home
When you've been away
The dearest dreams are the dreams of home
When you've been away
You travel far over land and sea
Then one day it's as clear as can be
The sweetest mile you'll ever roam
Is the last mile home.

You can travel round the globe
And see a lot of things
From Mandalay to old Pompeii
To Paris in the spring.

But you'll only learn one thing
Yes, just one thing.
You travel far over land and sea
Then one day it's as clear as can be
The sweetest mile you'll ever roam
Is the last mile home.

irc I'm not suggesting the climb of Beattock is continuous, but in my memory - :oops: I thought it was enogh to be a continuous freewheel - although I've obviously not ridden down in freewheel competion mode

* That's not from memory.