Irwell Divide

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riderdown
Posts: 471
Joined: Mon Dec 06, 2021 9:57 am

Irwell Divide

Post by riderdown »

Been working on a route that pretty much captures the Irwell watershed (not including the Manchester Ship Canal, (the debate on whether it's a canalised river or not is for another day))

Anyone know the area around Blackrod as it seems to be the hardest part to get off the main road (Middlebrook goes into the Croal which goes into the Irwell) aim is to get onto route 55 which gives a reasonable run into Salford

Some work to be done finessing before I have a GPX
Lazarus
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Joined: Fri Aug 30, 2013 10:49 am

Re: Irwell Divide

Post by Lazarus »

Its local to me but cannot claim to know it that well[ have a few mates who know it though ] Route 55 into Manchester is a good one but its bit confusing and not at all signed in Bolton till you reach the hospital - iirc - only done it three times mind bit confusing by Middlebrook as well which can be very busy and i think from that side is poor for cycle lanes - i come form Horwich side

What exactly do you want to know or need?
riderdown
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Joined: Mon Dec 06, 2021 9:57 am

Re: Irwell Divide

Post by riderdown »

I'm trying to find a legal off the "main roads of death" route from Horwich to Farnworth or Walkden to get on route 55 into Salford. Ideally it would follow the A6 as that's the watershed but I don't expect that to be nice.

There seems to be something highlighted elsewhere near middlebrook to lostock junction

Any thoughts?
Lazarus
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Joined: Fri Aug 30, 2013 10:49 am

Re: Irwell Divide

Post by Lazarus »

The A6 is fine till the bit before the large roundabout for Middlebrook. Never ridden the bits afterwards so no idea.

Will ask but my initial guess is you will need to either drop down and do the 55 sustrans path [which does follow a river - same route as railway line and all legal ]or go up and round westhoughton way

Legal makes it even harder . Will speak to some locals tonight and see what I can get for you as i only really know the canal part and haigh hall
Lazarus
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Joined: Fri Aug 30, 2013 10:49 am

Re: Irwell Divide

Post by Lazarus »

I'm trying to find a legal off the "main roads of death" route from Horwich to Farnworth or Walkden
Ok there is potential BUT its going to take you into the heart Of Bolton and through there - its " quiet roads " once there but its * should * be doable - I am happy to test ride this bit and see how practical it is - there is certainly a path on the map but no one has ridden it
you would end up here
https://www.streetmap.co.uk/map?x=36522 ... 09124&lm=0

which is a river and bike route [ though not on the OS for some reason ] other parts of this route are almost certainly tracks used by vehicles but FP , which i assume you wish to avoid
This is a cycle track and therefore legal and there are cycle lanes form MWay bit round past Bolton stadium - signage is a bit rubbish but its doable

ends here

https://www.streetmap.co.uk/map?x=37047 ... 08779&lm=0
you then need to get to here [ i have this mapped if you want it as i have ridden it a few times to get to Manc its quiet roads in Bolton with some nice supply points - esp if you like Asian food/supermarkets. I dont think I would want to be at the end bit late at night though as its bit rough looking.

https://www.streetmap.co.uk/map?x=37132 ... 08049&lm=0
That is then the 55 into Manchester - all signed

The other option is Top lock at Wigan [ leeds Liverpool canal- trail to edge of Wigan, Howe bridge, @ 55 at Tyldesley but the leigh guided bus way path is very poor - seasoned rider and commuter swore when describing this so seriously poor [ never ridden it myself]

Bit busy planning a weekend trip but will do a link with the GPX of both of these if you want - likely to be Sunday at the earliest i can do this

Happy to test ride as I dont think you are a local
riderdown
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Joined: Mon Dec 06, 2021 9:57 am

Re: Irwell Divide

Post by riderdown »

which is a river and bike route [ though not on the OS for some reason ] other parts of this route are almost certainly tracks used by vehicles but FP , which i assume you wish to avoid
This is a cycle track and therefore legal and there are cycle lanes form MWay bit round past Bolton stadium - signage is a bit rubbish but its doable
Thanks

This is what I have seen elsewhere, so looks like there is something
https://www.plotaroute.com/route/24102

I want to stay out of the centre of Bolton, the 55 gets me into Salford and then to Woden Bridge so the challenge is to get from Rivington reservoir at the south end to the 55, ideally via the A6 as that marks the "watershed" with the Bridgewater canal / river Croal with the canal going into the ship canal. Obviously without getting flattened and legal

I'm not local but in range on a long ride so the plan is to ride the sections before going for a full loop, however any help gratefully received,

I'm slightly surprised no-one has tried to pull it together before as it looks like a great weekend ride for anyone who fancies a full spectrum northern experience starting in the centre of Manchester/ Salford doable on a gravel bike at a push, fatter tyres probably better, on road mileage seems quite low
Stinginglip
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Joined: Fri Nov 04, 2022 8:46 am

Re: Irwell Divide

Post by Stinginglip »

Middlebrook trail towards Bolton through Lostock is great for avoiding the main veins of the A6 & Chorley New Rd.
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In Reverse
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Location: Manchester

Re: Irwell Divide

Post by In Reverse »

riderdown wrote: Wed Mar 01, 2023 2:00 pm I'm trying to find a legal off the "main roads of death" route from Horwich to Farnworth or Walkden to get on route 55 into Salford. Ideally it would follow the A6 as that's the watershed but I don't expect that to be nice.

There seems to be something highlighted elsewhere near middlebrook to lostock junction

Any thoughts?
I've ridden the A6 from Chorley into Manchester a few times, I don't mind it at all as far as main roads go.

Are you going up to Irwell Springs/the source of the Irwell? I grew up in Bacup so know that area reasonably well.
ericrobo
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Re: Irwell Divide

Post by ericrobo »

I live in Egerton, and regularly ride off-road from there to Farnworth - 7.6 miles of very interesting and good riding, crossing one or two main roads. It’s down the Eagley Valley, and I have 2 options, one for very dry, and one for normal…
And from Farnworth I go 10 miles to Trafford Park (Depot climbing wall). Through Farnworth park, 2 quiet streets to pick up the Linnyshaw Loop, about 4 or 5 miles along that to Monton, then 3 miles along Bridgewater Canal to Trafford Park…

I’m just back from a week away so need to surface so bear with…

And if you are talking about from Horwich:
Easy Peasy, up and over the hill to come out bang where the start is down the Eagley Valley… but there’s climbing as you probably know :mrgreen:

And if you want Manchester, keep going at Farnworth (Moses Gate country park) good riding till you need a bit of quiet street, then cycle path again to come out at Salford Uni, at the Crescent :-bd
riderdown
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Joined: Mon Dec 06, 2021 9:57 am

Re: Irwell Divide

Post by riderdown »

Are you going up to Irwell Springs/the source of the Irwell?
bridleway goes up to the trig point and then around the other side to meet Mary Townley
I grew up in Bacup so know that area reasonably well.
Most people keep that quiet.......
riderdown
Posts: 471
Joined: Mon Dec 06, 2021 9:57 am

Re: Irwell Divide

Post by riderdown »

then 3 miles along Bridgewater Canal to Trafford Park…
Bridgwater is out as it goes into ship canal so out of the catchment for these purposes

Will be exploring over Easter so suggestions welcome
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