Regents Canal not suitable for cycling??

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Slowroad
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Regents Canal not suitable for cycling??

Postby Slowroad » 10 Jun 2019, 6:35pm

Had a bit of a difficult time on this the other day, a shame as it was the last leg of a week away! It was lunchtime, and busy with pedestrians and runners, so I was being slow and careful, but I still got grumbled at for ringing my bell, ticked off for not ringing my bell, told to ride on the right, told to ride on the left... I'll be wary of using it on future trips, a shame as it's such an interesting route, and so much nicer than the parallel roads. I don't really blame the people who were nagging me, it's just getting very popular.
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mjr
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Re: Regents Canal not suitable for cycling??

Postby mjr » 10 Jun 2019, 6:47pm

In other words, it is suitable for cycling but very very congested now.
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Slowroad
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Re: Regents Canal not suitable for cycling??

Postby Slowroad » 10 Jun 2019, 6:49pm

In other words, it is suitable for cycling but very very congested now.

Yes, you're right, that is a better way of describing it!
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random37
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Re: Regents Canal not suitable for cycling??

Postby random37 » 10 Jun 2019, 6:52pm

That's London for you, sadly.

Most of the canal network isn't suitable for cycling IMO.

Slowroad
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Re: Regents Canal not suitable for cycling??

Postby Slowroad » 10 Jun 2019, 7:02pm

That's London for you, sadly.

Most of the canal network isn't suitable for cycling IMO.

You're right, but I've done it a few times before and it wasn't that bad, and I'd just come in on the Lea Valley Navigation, that wasn't so busy as it's outer London.
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carlislemike
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Re: Regents Canal not suitable for cycling??

Postby carlislemike » 10 Jun 2019, 7:16pm

Try the Suez Canal or the Panama Canal; loads of road space :D

thirdcrank
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Re: Regents Canal not suitable for cycling??

Postby thirdcrank » 10 Jun 2019, 7:23pm

Slowroad wrote:Had a bit of a difficult time on this the other day, a shame as it was the last leg of a week away! It was lunchtime, and busy with pedestrians and runners, so I was being slow and careful, but I still got grumbled at for ringing my bell, ticked off for not ringing my bell, told to ride on the right, told to ride on the left... I'll be wary of using it on future trips, a shame as it's such an interesting route, and so much nicer than the parallel roads. I don't really blame the people who were nagging me, it's just getting very popular.


Was that at the time or on a cycling forum afterwards? You cannot win. :wink:

mercalia
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Re: Regents Canal not suitable for cycling??

Postby mercalia » 11 Jun 2019, 9:25am

just ignore them.
still faster than walking

Richard Fairhurst
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Re: Regents Canal not suitable for cycling??

Postby Richard Fairhurst » 11 Jun 2019, 9:31am

random37 wrote:That's London for you, sadly.

Most of the canal network isn't suitable for cycling IMO.


The Regent's isn't really analogous to the rest of the canal network, either for cyclists or boaters.

I quite enjoy cycling it (it's part of my usual route from Paddington to East London) but you do have to be patient and considerate. There are two particular challenges: the joggers and the mobile phoners. Joggers are going at a speed where it's hard to overtake and I'll often be stuck behind one for a minute or two before finding a passing place. Mobile phoners just drift across the path seemingly unaware of their surroundings.

Bells are ok for making your presence known but squealy brakes are better. :D

There was a joint TfL/British Waterways/borough project a few years ago to develop and signpost a high-quality alternative route on parallel roads, purely because of the congestion on the towpath. I don't recall ever seeing anything come of it.
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mercalia
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Re: Regents Canal not suitable for cycling??

Postby mercalia » 11 Jun 2019, 9:38am

Richard Fairhurst wrote:
random37 wrote:That's London for you, sadly.

Most of the canal network isn't suitable for cycling IMO.


The Regent's isn't really analogous to the rest of the canal network, either for cyclists or boaters.

I quite enjoy cycling it (it's part of my usual route from Paddington to East London) but you do have to be patient and considerate. There are two particular challenges: the joggers and the mobile phoners. Joggers are going at a speed where it's hard to overtake and I'll often be stuck behind one for a minute or two before finding a passing place. Mobile phoners just drift across the path seemingly unaware of their surroundings.

Bells are ok for making your presence known but squealy brakes are better. :D

There was a joint TfL/British Waterways/borough project a few years ago to develop and signpost a high-quality alternative route on parallel roads, purely because of the congestion on the towpath. I don't recall ever seeing anything come of it.



in my case shrieky brakes that scare the feck out of pedestrians

random37
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Re: Regents Canal not suitable for cycling??

Postby random37 » 11 Jun 2019, 9:45am

I am a lifelong cyclist. I also lived on a narrowboat for 12 years.
It would work, unfortunately there is an adversarial relationship between some members of the groups of boaters, walkers, cyclists and anglers which spoil it for everyone.
I've had lycra clad MTBers shout at me while I was walking my dog for "hogging the bike path"(when it certainly wasn't a bike path). I've known boaters who deliberately put mooring pins in places where they knew they were likely to make cyclists faceplant. I was caught by such a mooring pin once, riding to the shops.
Practically, much of the towpath isn't suitable for cycling, there is no money to maintain the bank.
I don't know what the solution is, apart from fewer people.

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mjr
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Re: Regents Canal not suitable for cycling??

Postby mjr » 11 Jun 2019, 11:22am

Richard Fairhurst wrote:There was a joint TfL/British Waterways/borough project a few years ago to develop and signpost a high-quality alternative route on parallel roads, purely because of the congestion on the towpath. I don't recall ever seeing anything come of it.

Me neither. I don't really understand what's blocking it but it feels like the problem is an E-W route across Camden Town.

From the east end, there's already NCN1 and LCN16 roughly paralleling it on paths and quieter roads. Instead of passing under St Pancras to go to Euston, LCN16 could instead turn north along Camley Street, Barker Drive, St Pancras Way cycleway, some way across Camden Town to Regents Park Outer Circle, Hanover Gate, Park Road, Lodge Road, Lisson Grove, Henderson Drive, Cunningham Place, then the already-used alternative (I think) of Aberdeen Place and Blomfield Road and it's at Little Venice. Some of it would need kerbs moving, but much would be OK repainted as cycle streets.
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millimole
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Re: Regents Canal not suitable for cycling??

Postby millimole » 11 Jun 2019, 4:38pm

random37 wrote:I am a lifelong cyclist. I also lived on a narrowboat for 12 years.
It would work, unfortunately there is an adversarial relationship between some members of the groups of boaters, walkers, cyclists and anglers which spoil it for everyone.
.


I have volunteered with The Canal & River Trust for the last 7 years, and this adversarial relationship is real, and can be very unpleasant - on every side. It's one of the straws on the camel's back that is making me consider giving up volunteering with CRT.
The towpaths are a real free-for-all, unsuitable for just about every use that they are subjected to in the 21st century.
If they are left au-naturel they are horrible to walk, run and cycle on, but great for anglers; nicely surfaced they become fast routes for cycling and running, but horrid for walking, angling and mooring. Left with 'heritage' surfacing they are fine for walking, pooling by bike, and jogging, but too narrow for shared use.
There's no easy answer, the towpaths are contested space.

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londonbikerider
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Re: Regents Canal not suitable for cycling??

Postby londonbikerider » 18 Jun 2019, 2:03pm

Another thing to consider: yobs!
Several clubmates and people I know have narrowly escaped being mugged, while other people had to surrender thir bike/phone or been beaten up.

Apparently it happens around the Hackney area, or just nort/south of it, and most often at dusk or night.
My advice: avoid.