North Downs Way

Trips, adventures, bikes, equipment, etc.
Zulu Eleven
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Re: North Downs Way

Postby Zulu Eleven » 16 Nov 2018, 8:28pm

MikeF wrote: You don't need flagship trails to encourage people into the countryside.

That’s not what the data suggests
There are plenty of roads around and many people including me cycle them.

Maybe they’re not trying to cater for people like you?
After all it's not the countryside people want but more of a playground

That’s not what the data suggests
Far more needs doing to enable people to cycle on roads

Agreed, but it’s an irrelevance, Not everyone wants to ride on roads.
without too much diversionary effort put into trails. They are just diversionary to the real problems of cycling and just pandering to those who want to see cyclists cleared from the roads that important motor cars use.

Again, not everyone wants to ride on roads, it’s a complete irrelevance to what many riders want - however I suggest that if you want to pursue that argument then you might be better telling everyone what a disaster for cycling segregated infrastructure in urban areas has been before trying to oppose improved connectivity in the rights of way network and the expansion of a programme of National trails that currently have up to 1/3 of all recorded users riding bikes on them.
Having gained all that height why go down to Oxted and then up Pitchfont Lane which is a steep rough track (BOAT)?
lots of people think going up and down steep rough tracks is quite enjoyable.

Overall, I think the broad message I’m attempting to convey here is that you appear to be mistaking what you like/think as representative of what other people, or cyclists in general, want or need. These routes clearly aren’t suited for you, that doesn’t mean that they’re not popular or needed

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LinusR
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Re: North Downs Way

Postby LinusR » 28 Nov 2018, 10:38am

The North Downs Way is also featured on pages 36-42 of the December 2018/January 2019 edition of Cycle magazine.

zenitb
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Re: North Downs Way

Postby zenitb » 3 Jan 2019, 10:27pm

This looks great .. thanks for all the effort going into it. I am local to Farnham so will have to try the first section at least ...

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mellon farmer
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Re: North Downs Way

Postby mellon farmer » 6 Mar 2019, 8:48pm

I will be riding between two of my sister's houses, one near Farnham and the other in Reigate, would this be rideable on my Genesis Croix de Fer? I have ridden the Granite and Gears from Burrator to Princetown in Dartmoor so not adverse to some rougher stuff, my other option would be my Surly Krampus. I will also be riding the Downs link to the south coast to see my other sister which I have done on mt CDF a few years ago fully loaded.

this will be June. July so hopefully dry conditions but you never know!

Thanks for any feedback given.

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LinusR
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Re: North Downs Way

Postby LinusR » 6 Mar 2019, 11:45pm

mellon farmer wrote:I will be riding between two of my sister's houses, one near Farnham and the other in Reigate, would this be rideable on my Genesis Croix de Fer? I have ridden the Granite and Gears from Burrator to Princetown in Dartmoor so not adverse to some rougher stuff, my other option would be my Surly Krampus. I will also be riding the Downs link to the south coast to see my other sister which I have done on mt CDF a few years ago fully loaded.

this will be June. July so hopefully dry conditions but you never know!

Thanks for any feedback given.


There's a useful report in Cycling Weekly about choice of bike. The writer states:

"It was only really on a few potions (sic) of day one – from Guildford to Burham – where my adventure bike choice proved to be a disadvantage. Roots, large rocks and technical drops got in my way – but then on an adventure ride no one is in a hurry, so the mountain bikers just waited – as I did atop of the road climbs where their hefty suspension weighed them down." https://www.cyclingweekly.com/routes/south/search-gravel-bike-adventures-englands-green-pleasant-land-396116

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Sweep
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Re: North Downs Way

Postby Sweep » 8 Apr 2019, 11:12am

Thanks for flagging this linnus. Looks interesting. Will do with panniers though having decided not to join the bikepacking craze. A trip for the 26 inch exped bike I think though I have ridden a loaded 700 hybrid with 38 tyres on a fair bit of the offroad pilgrims way with no issues.

An idea to get out on this sharpish I tnink before it becomes too crowded and full of the adrenaline crowd.
Sweep

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mjr
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Re: North Downs Way

Postby mjr » 8 Apr 2019, 12:55pm

Zulu Eleven wrote:Really the bigger question is to begin to analyse why, despite this data, we still only have two of our fifteen flagship National Trails, whose very purpose is to encourage people out into the countryside, fully open to riders

Sorry if I missed it, but which is the other one fully open, alongside Peddars Way?
MJR, mostly pedalling 3-speed roadsters. KL+West Norfolk BUG incl social easy rides http://www.klwnbug.co.uk
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gaz
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Re: North Downs Way

Postby gaz » 8 Apr 2019, 7:17pm

AIUI the South Downs Way is all either bridleway or higher status, therefore open to bicycles.
Hand wash only. Do not iron.

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LinusR
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Re: North Downs Way

Postby LinusR » 8 Apr 2019, 7:21pm

mjr wrote:Sorry if I missed it, but which is the other one fully open, alongside Peddars Way?


I believe the only two waymarked National Trails that you can cycle along is the South Downs Way and the Pennine Bridleway https://www.nationaltrail.co.uk/pennine-bridleway [edit] I just checked for a source: "The South Downs Way is one of only 2 National Trails formally designated as a long distance bridleway (The Pennine Bridleway being the other)." https://www.nationaltrail.co.uk/south-downs-way/route/south-downs-way-sections-suitable-cyclists-and-equestrians

I was thinking about cycling the Peddars Way but it's not waymarked for cyclists, is it, and most of it is footpath only? [edit] My mistake. although most of it is marked as footpath, because it is a National Trail then it is permitted to cycle.

Zulu Eleven
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Re: North Downs Way

Postby Zulu Eleven » 11 Apr 2019, 1:43am

mjr wrote:
Zulu Eleven wrote:Really the bigger question is to begin to analyse why, despite this data, we still only have two of our fifteen flagship National Trails, whose very purpose is to encourage people out into the countryside, fully open to riders

Sorry if I missed it, but which is the other one fully open, alongside Peddars Way?



The National Trail in Norfolk is actually a combination of both the Peddars Way and Nofolk Coast path - so as a result the NT is still not fully open for bikes

The two fully open are the South Downs Way, and the Pennine Bridleway (though there is still actually a 5 mile gap in the off-road route at Glossop , and is still missing the Northern Extension, authorised by the Secretary of State in 1999, of which construction still hasn't even begun.

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mjr
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Re: North Downs Way

Postby mjr » 11 Apr 2019, 11:24am

Zulu Eleven wrote:
mjr wrote:
Zulu Eleven wrote:Really the bigger question is to begin to analyse why, despite this data, we still only have two of our fifteen flagship National Trails, whose very purpose is to encourage people out into the countryside, fully open to riders

Sorry if I missed it, but which is the other one fully open, alongside Peddars Way?



The National Trail in Norfolk is actually a combination of both the Peddars Way and Nofolk Coast path - so as a result the NT is still not fully open for bikes

The two fully open are the South Downs Way, and the Pennine Bridleway (though there is still actually a 5 mile gap in the off-road route at Glossop , and is still missing the Northern Extension, authorised by the Secretary of State in 1999, of which construction still hasn't even begun.

It's an interesting interpretation of "fully open" if there's a 5 mile gap but maybe I misunderstood.

Yeah, the Norfolk Coast Path is pretty much closed to cycling with the fig-leaf excuse that the Coast Cycleway is mostly on quiet lanes above it (NCN1 and RR30). I'm surprised that counts as National Trail to be honest, as it's pretty incomplete for walking, last I saw, like most of the Norfolk Trails.
MJR, mostly pedalling 3-speed roadsters. KL+West Norfolk BUG incl social easy rides http://www.klwnbug.co.uk
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Labrat
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Re: North Downs Way

Postby Labrat » 12 Apr 2019, 2:22pm

“27th December 2013
Whilst the Pennine Bridleway was officially opened in June 2012 there are still a couple of places where the linear route has not been completed. The most southerly is a gap of approximately 5 miles in Derbyshire between Monks Road north of Hayfield and Wooley Bridge Road to the west of Hadfield. It has been possible to temporarily mark an interim route for cyclists and a different interim route for walkers - these have been shown on the map. The lack of existing public bridleway and quiet roads in the area means that it has not been possible to find an interim route that can be recommended for horse riders. Riders are recommended to stop at Hayfield or the layby off Monks Road and box round to the Torside car park on the Trans Pennine Trail. This Trail can then be followed southwards to link with the PBW to the south of the A628. Negotiations and works are on-going to continue with the development of a single route for all users of the Pennine Bridleway.

The second gap is a short one where the route approaches and leaves the A65 in the village of Long Preston at the foot of the Yorkshire Dales. The aim is to secure a light controlled crossing of the busy road for all users. There is currently a crossing present in the centre of the village accessible to those on foot which can be reached by existing footpaths and roads. Horse riders please note that crossing the A65 at present will require using a stretch of the road. Although it is not a wide road, it carries holiday traffic and a large number of HGV's so if used is best tackled early morning or evening. Negotiations are in progress to provide a suitable route to and across the road for all users.”

You can guess how far it’s developed in the intervening five years.

Last I heard was that a bid had gone in for £1.6 million to bridge the gap.

Jokes about paved with gold bricks were made

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LinusR
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Re: North Downs Way

Postby LinusR » 12 Aug 2019, 11:48am

I finally got around to riding the first section of NDW from Farnham rail station to Westhumble & Box Hill station. I modified the riders route that is being promoted here https://www.cyclinguk.org/article/north-downs-way-new-gpx-route to start at Farnham Station and to cut out a section of bridleway that is overgrown and a bit steep for me to ride to instead include part of NCN 12. I also cut the recommended first day in half as it would have been too much effort. Trip record: https://ridewithgps.com/trips/38451030

The trail is in pretty good condition even after the rain we've had over the past week. In fact it probably helped to damp down sandy stretches and bind the surface together to make it easier to ride. I used a hard tail MTB with 2.3 inch tyres. Anything narrower would be hard going over the sandy soil which is like a dune in places.

P8110103.JPG


I'll be doing Westhumble to Oxted next: https://ridewithgps.com/routes/30820298

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LinusR
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Re: North Downs Way

Postby LinusR » 21 Oct 2019, 10:05am

I did another section of the NDW riders route over the weekend - between Ashford and Canterbury. Just two words of caution: green chalk. Between 18.5k and 19k on Interim Riders Route Day 3 https://ridewithgps.com/routes/31330375 (OS Grid Ref: TR 06076 51961). There had been a lot of rain the week before and descending very carefully on the byway off the top of the Downs my front wheel started to slide. Never a good feeling. So I walked the hundred metres or so where the chalk is exposed. For those not familiar with southern England, wet green chalk is like ice. Even with chunky Maxxis Minion DHFs it was not going to end well. So don't be tempted to go hammering down the descent. :!:

Norman H
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Re: North Downs Way

Postby Norman H » 27 Oct 2019, 12:45pm

That's useful to know. I'm guessing the off road section of the NDW wouldn't be advisable on a touring bike with 28mm tyres. I rode from Whitstable to Ashford as part of a Kent tour earlier this year using much of that route but excluding the NDW.

The plan was to follow route 18 all the way from Canterbury to Ashford via Chartham and Rye but a confusing sign at a T junction just beyond Shalmsford Street (24.3km on your route) saw us take a wrong turn. I see from your linked map that route 18 goes two ways at that point. I was intending to go left and follow the route to Wye via Sole Street but instead turned right as indicated on the sign. This way takes route 18 on the Pilgrims Way. I wasn't aware of this at the time and in any case missed the next sign where the the Pilgrims Way section begins. We ended up on the A28 at Bagham and followed it to just before Godmersham before we could join route 18 again.

For future reference do you or anybody else by any chance know what the surface is like on that section of Pilgrims Way?.