The Railway Touring Club

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  • In a shock move, that some are calling a 'Soft Lauch'

    RTC stickers will now be available on this, 'RTC Approved' ride this evening­

  • Is it a worthwhile route and if so, would you mind sharing it?

    I'm on a direct line to Luton, so it might make a nice day ride one weekend. I haven't done many routes north of London.

  • Assuming it’s the one @doubleodavey took and there’s a route mapped on ridewithGPS or elsewhere? Yes : )
    Sustrans bundle them together as ‘Hertfordshire Greenways’.

    I just followed Google Maps on my phone when I got a bit lost - that’s kind of why I was surprised to find myself on an old trackbed! I’ve done few rides out of north London and those were main roads.

    The Lea Valley canal path is quick for most of the way - some puddling to be worked around - it gets busy past Enfield Lock where the area becomes more of a leisure destination.
    The back road from Hoddesdon to Hertford (Lord Street > Mangrove Lane) is low traffic and shielded by hedgerows in places. Hertford is small and easy to traverse.
    Cole Green Way is a bit murky where the track bed is in hollows, otherwise fast and solid.
    Welwyn is a bit of a chore until you pick up the trail again at Bridge Rd.
    Ayot Greenway, more of the same.
    The linkup between the Ayot and the section that runs from Harpenden to Luton is the Lower Luton Road and it’s narrow in places, so be prepared.

    Overall an enjoyable trip to Luton. If you don’t mind the journey’s end being, well, Luton : )

  • Tried a rough first pass here:
    How does this look?

  • You need to bear left up toward Broxbourne at Waltham abbey. Give me a minute and I'll find my route files.

    Edit - here is the reverse of the route out­01582412

  • That route goes all the way to Ware (which I’ve not done, so would be interested to get your report on it!).
    On your map, I do a dogleg left at Hoddesdon for a few miles, then a right angle up to Hertford. I enjoyed that bit of road.
    @doubleodavey’s route seems similar (can’t see it on my Apple telephone for some reason...)

  • I just let the programme choose the route and then dragged it closer to where I want to go.
    It's a great programme and I use it all the time, if you click on any road and select "Find photos" it'll show you photos tagged with that GPS location, it's saved me from some pretty miserable roads over the years and also found me some gems (beautiful rideable bridlepaths through open country).

    The route to Ware shows a pretty open towpath along the river and I'm a sucker for rivers. Mangrove Road looks nice too. Singletrack along the edge of woodland by the looks of things.

  • I know these parts very well, and am willing to show people the way. I'm up in bishops stortford, but could meet somewhere and lead back to Stortford, where you can get a train back to Liverpool St.
    Or if you like, we could go east, towards Braintree, on the flitch way, another of beechings beheadings!

  • In other news, @Ecobeard , I think this object, that I found whilst magnet fishing, is a branding tool from the Great Western Railway.... if it is or isn’t, I would like you to have it, as you are a deserving candidate!!👍
    Freeby, obviously👌

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  • Wow

    That’s a find and a half! Thanks for thinking of me

  • no worries.... Well have o work out how to get it to you.

  • I'll ask in here because maybe the right people are in here.

    Are there any family friendly links from petersfield to soberton? I was hoping there might be something but I am lazy and so thought I'd ask rather than Investigate.

  • Would there be any interest in a 3-day ride next summer long the lines of the Downs Link Ride some of you did? If there was route that took in a bit of the Wye Valley or parts of Wales over a Fri, Sat, Sun would be fun.

  • Yes. Yes there would. :)

    Plenty of former railway lines in that there Wales!

  • The leading photo, is the exact spot where I proposed.

    Finally proof that the Graduian can still occasionally produce some incisive journalism around the days pointy issues.

    I wasnt aware of The Cinder Track I must say, nice read that

  • Not at all a Railway line, but I'm going to ride the canals up to Luton this weekend.
    I'll let you know how it goes, but it could be another nice ride out, with a bit of token old railway at the far end for another day...

  • Double-post

  • Well, I did the canals and a bit of railway line up to Luton on Sunday and it was a really great ride.
    The urban bit following Regent's Park Canal to the River Lea Navigation is a bit slow, but really interesting as you get a very different perspective of the city from the canal.
    The River Lea navigation is much more picturesque than you'd imagine and it quickly empties you out into open countryside at Lea Valley Park.
    I mostly followed NCN2 and then diverted onto NCN61, so the trail was quite well marked and easy to find even without GPS.
    There are a few minor roads around Broxbourne and then you're quickly into Ware - which is again, very pretty. Hertford was entirely forgettable, then we joined the Cole Green way to Welwyn.
    To be honest, the route beyond Welwyn was lovely, but I could quite happily have hopped on the train there and called it a day.
    That said, the road riding from Welwyn to Luton was great, really lovely open countryside, easy navigation and no hassle from cars. It was almost a relief to have some climbing and descending after the relatively flat canals and railway line. Getting back to town from Luton is super easy and fast too - about half an hour and only £15 for a super off peak single.

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  • Oh Yeah

    That's the good stuff, right there

  • Money spent leaving Luton is always worth it : )
    (I’m probably gonna do this one again soon, depends if I do Bristol next week or not, instead).

  • Lovely. Great weather for it. @dicki and co. sometimes do this ride in the other direction:­60/

    There have been some other forum rides, too.

  • I did think about that, but having ridden the canal both ways, it gets crowded in the evening/later afternoon, so I thought it would be better to be leaving London early morning.
    It's all of 500m climbing in 100km, so not exactly alpine climbing.

  • There are three audaxes this weekend starting in Stevenage - this is the 100km one­68/

    I was hoping to do it but I'm all out of brownie points

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The Railway Touring Club

Posted by Avatar for Ecobeard @Ecobeard