SPEN VALLEY

LOCATION

    (Click on   to see a map of the start location.)

Spen Valley Greenway viaduct.
Exit M62 at J26 (Bradford) - do not go on to M606 - follow signs to Cleckheaton; take A638 to Cleckheaton; at 1st set of lights, turn right; after 1/4 mile, you go under a viaduct ; park up as soon as possible after the viaduct - the Spen Valley Greenway is a disused railway track, part of which is this viaduct.

DISTANCE

22km, round trip. Duration c. 3.5 hrs.
From the viaduct head left, over the motorway, past the golf course, through the tunnel to the point where the tarmac runs out. Return to the viaduct. Continue straight on through woods, past steel sheep and other odd structures, over a steep little bridge then down to the point where a steel barrier blocks the route. Return to the viaduct.

SURFACE/DESIGNATION

Good tarmac surface. Gravel falls from the steep banking on the right in a couple of places on the northern part of the route. One point on the southern part has a tree root bump. Further south new housing is being constructed and the unreinstated surface may be loose stone in places.

SAFETY DETAILS

Cyclists, dogs and their residues are the major problem. There is one short steepish hill about 1km from the Southern turn around point.

FACILITIES

Pub en route and Tesco supermarket near the start.

OTHER DETAILS

This disused railway track a few miles south of Bradford has been recently metalled and offers a good surface for roller skiing of all types. The scenery is typical of countryside around Northern textile towns (i.e. mills and housing mixed with woodland and open countryside).

Graham Aspinall,
Manchester Cross Country Ski Club