RSF - The Off Road Cycling Club

The Adventure Starts Here

Today’s run from Moses Gate is one of the very few outings we have that does not start from a café, so as prescribed we make a prompt start at 10-00am. Unfortunately Keith found he had a puncture, and with his usual alacrity set about the repair, apologising for delaying us.

As it turned out Keith was not the last to be ready, just a couple of minutes before he had finished the repair Cynthia arrived; she explained that she had been held up by a multitude of slower drivers, all wearing flat caps. I never wear mine when in the car, but I do when on the tractor, thundering along the road flat out at the governed speed of 13.25 MPH. I believe this is just below the speed threshold of what the Victorians thought would cause one’s eyes to be injured by the extreme wind, caused by one’s passage through the atmosphere at high velocity.

Leaving the park we rode along the rather muddy track to Darcy Lever and climbed up through the nature reserve to the bridleway towards Bradley Fold for our first and only refreshment stop at the garden centre there.The recently re-surfaced rail route was still not officially re-opened, but many users could be seen on its new tarmac surface; so moving the barriers ever so slightly we made off to Black Lane, coming off the route at Moss Shaw Farm where at present the route terminates.

Now riding on quiet avenues we parralled the railway past its erstwhile junction and bridge by the B6292 and made our way down to the canal on yet another rail route. In fact in this area the number of lines, and branch lines is incredible, in some fields, bridge support pillars can be seen, just sticking up out of the grass, with no other evidence of their past use.

On arriving at the canal we turned for Radcliffe, here the canal has a main road built directly through it, and this we had to cross. There is not a crossing of any type here; one has to rely on the goodwill of motorists to oblige. It was very busy today, but a furniture van and a service bus held the traffic up while we crossed.

Back on the canal, which we followed all the way back to Moses Gate, it became quite muddy towards the end, and about 100 metres before our turning we found the towpath blocked by a recently repaired barrier. Directly beside it is a steep and muddy path down into the park; this was to be our alternative route. It was rideable with care, but some more prudent riders decided to walk along it.

The photos I took can be viewed on Flickr here.

Again we had been blessed by good weather, for the time of year, and pleasant fellowship.See you all at Preston next week, Brian.