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Re: Royston Woods - A Safer Way - Who has actually done it ?

Posted: 29 Aug 2018, 12:25pm
by brynpoeth
Just realised, Royston Wood is a person, not a forest :wink:

Re: Royston Woods - A Safer Way - Who has actually done it ?

Posted: 29 Aug 2018, 2:45pm
by loafer
brynpoeth wrote:Just realised, Royston Wood is a person, not a forest :wink:


:lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:

Re: Royston Woods - A Safer Way - Who has actually done it ?

Posted: 31 Aug 2018, 6:58pm
by Igobybike
Tizme wrote:I am planning on going both ways using Royston Woods route for a good part of it, but trying not to cover the same roads up and back where possible.

mkbutters, have you written a blog at all? I'd be very interested in hearing how you got on.


I'm in the process of doing it, and writing a blog as I go along. Like mkbutters, I've deviated from the route where accommodation is off route, but have mostly tried to find suitable places on route. I have on a couple of occasions so far abandoned the route and taken to roads when I got fed up with towpaths or poorly surfaced tracks. IMO large parts of it through England are best suited to a hybrid type bike with fat tyres and someone who likes slow going. It's not a route for 10 days or less but ok or good for a two week trip, and where you expect all your riding to be in daylight hours. A lot of it is really nice, scenic, safe, slow riding if you like that. I don't say much about the route/surface in my blog though.

Re: Royston Woods - A Safer Way - Who has actually done it ?

Posted: 31 Aug 2018, 7:16pm
by Paulatic
Igobybike wrote:
Tizme wrote:I am planning on going both ways using Royston Woods route for a good part of it, but trying not to cover the same roads up and back where possible.

mkbutters, have you written a blog at all? I'd be very interested in hearing how you got on.


I'm in the process of doing it, and writing a blog as I go along. Like mkbutters, I've deviated from the route where accommodation is off route, but have mostly tried to find suitable places on route. I have on a couple of occasions so far abandoned the route and taken to roads when I got fed up with towpaths or poorly surfaced tracks. IMO large parts of it through England are best suited to a hybrid type bike with fat tyres and someone who likes slow going. It's not a route for 10 days or less but ok or good for a two week trip, and where you expect all your riding to be in daylight hours. A lot of it is really nice, scenic, safe, slow riding if you like that. I don't say much about the route/surface in my blog though.


Nice blog, just read yesterday’s and It’s a questionable route if it can make Penrith to Gretna hilly. Even sticking exactly to route7 isn’t hilly.
I’m also following a group following Royston. They are nearly there now but was interesting reading on some of the canal days. On two occasions they’d had enough and bailed out onto a main road to achieve getting somewhere.

Re: Royston Woods - A Safer Way - Who has actually done it ?

Posted: 31 Aug 2018, 8:42pm
by Igobybike
Paulatic wrote:Nice blog, just read yesterday’s and It’s a questionable route if it can make Penrith to Gretna hilly. Even sticking exactly to route7 isn’t hilly. I’m also following a group following Royston. They are nearly there now but was interesting reading on some of the canal days. On two occasions they’d had enough and bailed out onto a main road to achieve getting somewhere.


Haha, well you have to go over Shap from Kendal where we started from. Of course some people might say Shap is no big deal,and it isn't really that much of a deal, but with panniers and 8 days of cycling in your legs it can feel like something. I wouldn't say Penrith to Gretna is 'hilly', what I actually said was between Penrith and Carlisle there was a lot of up and down but the downs that preceded the ups gave enough momentum to get up the other side without too much effort, the run from there to Gretna Green was easy and then it 'seemed' like another slog to Lockerbie, seeming being the operative word - legs were tired and it certainly wasn't a flat day overall.

Re: Royston Woods - A Safer Way - Who has actually done it ?

Posted: 31 Aug 2018, 9:23pm
by Paulatic
Igobybike wrote:
Paulatic wrote:Nice blog, just read yesterday’s and It’s a questionable route if it can make Penrith to Gretna hilly. Even sticking exactly to route7 isn’t hilly. I’m also following a group following Royston. They are nearly there now but was interesting reading on some of the canal days. On two occasions they’d had enough and bailed out onto a main road to achieve getting somewhere.


Haha, well you have to go over Shap from Kendal where we started from. Of course some people might say Shap is no big deal,and it isn't really that much of a deal, but with panniers and 8 days of cycling in your legs it can feel like something. I wouldn't say Penrith to Gretna is 'hilly', what I actually said was between Penrith and Carlisle there was a lot of up and down but the downs that preceded the ups gave enough momentum to get up the other side without too much effort, the run from there to Gretna Green was easy and then it 'seemed' like another slog to Lockerbie, seeming being the operative word - legs were tired and it certainly wasn't a flat day overall.


Apologies, I took up and down to mean hilly. There is one route along there which is virtually level the whole way and ends in a downhill into Carlisle.
Gretna to Lockerbie is a drag you’re going up from sea level.

Re: Royston Woods - A Safer Way - Who has actually done it ?

Posted: 4 Sep 2018, 4:33pm
by Igobybike
Well, the Scottish section was great, as far as Tain anyway. Mostly minor roads or well surfaced cycle track/shared use path alongside major roads that were reasonably direct. Good examples of what cycle provision should be like on the whole, IMO. After Tain up to Helmsdale on the A9 it didn't feel so safe at all. There isn't a lot of traffic but what there is wants to travel at dual carriageway speed on single carriageway road, often narrow.

After Tain I'd be inclined to try going via Lairg instead, if I were ever to do it again.

Re: Royston Woods - A Safer Way - Who has actually done it ?

Posted: 5 Sep 2018, 4:46pm
by matt2matt2002
I've only dabbled with the Scottish end.
I recall coming down from Tongue and taking the B871 via Skelpik and Syre
to Altnahatra
Anyone any thoughts on this road ?
Little traffic I remember.

Re: Royston Woods - A Safer Way - Who has actually done it ?

Posted: 6 Sep 2018, 11:47am
by mkbutters
Sorry ...but I never did a blog. Agree the route is definitely not for a sub 10 day ride! It is slow in place (sometimes very slow). You do get frustrated at times on the canal paths (people, fishermen, dogs in the way) but it is a VERY safe route. The only section I would DEFINITELY change is the section north of Wolverhampton. Avoid the canal path here as it turn to grass, mud, potholes! We were aiming for Penkridge that night and wished we had re-routed this. Shap is no big deal... yes its a slog but great scenery. I did the trip on a Trek Crossrip 3 and my friend on a 10 year old Trek road bike. I guess a hybrid my have been good in places but its all a balance. We found some of the highland tracks slow going and would jump on the A9 (in its quieter spots) for an hour or so to gain some time. .... hope this helps

Re: Royston Woods - A Safer Way - Who has actually done it ?

Posted: 6 Sep 2018, 11:49am
by mkbutters
matt2matt2002 wrote:I've only dabbled with the Scottish end.
I recall coming down from Tongue and taking the B871 via Skelpik and Syre
to Altnahatra
Anyone any thoughts on this road ?
Little traffic I remember.


Matt .... we took this road and it is stunning! No traffic. A few extra miles than our original route but well worth it and missing the A9!

Re: Royston Woods - A Safer Way - Who has actually done it ?

Posted: 6 Sep 2018, 8:11pm
by FasterFerret
matt2matt2002 wrote:I've only dabbled with the Scottish end.
I recall coming down from Tongue and taking the B871 via Skelpik and Syre
to Altnahatra
Anyone any thoughts on this road ?
Little traffic I remember.


I did JOGLE, dropped down from Bettyhill, B871 via Skelpik and Syre. Brilliant route, road quite grippy and undulates upwards going from North to South.

NCN1 goes to Tongue, B871 is reached by the B873 by taking a right turn after Altnaharra alongside the side of Loch Naver. Most of that bit is single lane with passing places, very light on traffic, you can keep moving if you get your timings right on the passing places. The only frustration for me was the number of cars (single figures) who would sail past the last passing place between you and them and then look at you quizzically when there wasn't room to pass.

I prefered taking this route to using the A9, which I have never ridden on, but having taken a taxi from Inverness to JOG I am pleased that I took the route that I did. Reports about the A9 are at best 'mixed'.

Re: Royston Woods - A Safer Way - Who has actually done it ?

Posted: 19 Feb 2019, 8:53pm
by Richard Fairhurst
Resurrecting an old thread:

I see Royston Wood has a Facebook page where he's posting photos from his current LEJOG: https://www.facebook.com/LEJOGCycleGuide

With the best will in the world, given some of the paths he seems to have chosen, I'm not sure I'd necessarily trust his route advice...

Re: Royston Woods - A Safer Way - Who has actually done it ?

Posted: 6 Mar 2019, 8:35pm
by thegreatpan
I'm using this route for my JOGLE starting 1st May. Thanks for the heads up on the section north of Wolverhampton.

Re: Royston Woods - A Safer Way - Who has actually done it ?

Posted: 6 Mar 2019, 8:47pm
by loafer
thegreatpan wrote:I'm using this route for my JOGLE stating 1st May. Thanks for the heads up on the section north of Wolverhampton.


am thinking the same for poss next year with my partner as she would prefer a traffic free(as poss) route :)

Re: Royston Woods - A Safer Way - Who has actually done it ?

Posted: 29 Mar 2019, 2:15am
by MarOliKop
Hello all. I will be doing Royston's "safer route" this June, starting on the June 1st, allowing myself 15 days to complete. (I will have two spare days in case of emergency).
I will be doing it by camping only, no B&B as I will have not exact daily targets. I will not be writing a blog, but I will be collecting my opinion about the route, surfaces, camp sites, food stores and pubs along the way. I will post here when I am done about my experience.