The longer Stockport Community Cycling Club ride in April is always a hilly affair. Andy S’s new ride – Two Towers – certainly proved to be that!
Thirteen club members were up for the challenge as we met at Clough Head Visitor and Information Centre, at Haslingden Grane. Sarah was the back-leader for this ride.
Immediately out of the car park we set off up Grane Road and our first climb. What Andy S called a ‘warmerer upperer’.
Turning off the main road we headed for PIckup Bank and Hoddlesden.
We then dropped down towards Eccleshill.
Before heading down and weaving our way through the edge of Darwen.
Soon we were leaving Darwen and heading for Tockholes. Here we got our first sight of Darwen Tower out on Darwen Hill. It was built in 1898. Apparently you can climb to the top of the tower and on a good day get views out as far as Blackpool, Isle of Man, North Wales and North Yorkshire.
Our journey continued on towards Belmont.
We climbed up towards local cycle network route 91.
We took a break at Entwistle Reservoir. We were almost half an hour early for our lunchtime booking.
The Strawbury Duck at Turton is a fine eatery and once again the food was excellent. Sarah had an omelette. It’s just a shame that once again the food took over an hour to arrive.
After lunch we began by crossing Wayoh Reservoir.
We picked up cycle network route 91 again.
And headed for Holcombe. Here we passed the second tower – Peel Monument, also known as Holcombe Tower. Erected in 1852, this is a memorial to Sir Robert Peel who was born in nearby Bury.
From Holcombe we dropped down into Helmshore.
And then followed NCN Route 6 to Haslingden.
Finally there was a two mile steady climb up Grane Road.
This was a challenging and excellent 32 mile ride in which we had climbed 3000 feet. Everyone had enjoyed the challenge and felt proud to have reached the finish. Well done!
You can view the Two Towers route below: