Chorley Travel Blog› entry 5 of 11 › view all entries
October 14th, 2009 – by: mikewill86
We left the canal as we approached Blackburn and found ourselves a lovely little cafe, V. Fesh Cafe. Once we sat down a couple of the other customers enquired about the bike ride, and asked why we were doing it, we explained that it was for charity and we were cycling right the way to leeds. As we did this 2 customers kindly donated money to the charity (bowel canacer UK) which was extremely generous! we sat and ate our lovely full english breakfasts and when it came to leave, the owner also said that we could have our drinks for free.
After leaving Blackburn we passed through Church, which is the half way point. This felt great as it meant we only had 63 miles to go! On through church we got to Burnley, which unfortunately, isnt the nicest of places! Graffiti and tramps everywhere! We stopped and spoke to a couple who were interested in what we were doing and told them that we were heading to Gargrave to camp for the night, they looked at us as if to say "no chance", so with that we headed on, trying to pick up the pace a bit! On the other side of Burnley the canal became much nicer, however the Tow path was becoming more and more difficult to cycle on, wet and muddy grass in the most part, occasionally broken by loose rock and gravel, not enjoyable to cycle on at all. We reached Foulridge at about half past 3 in the afternoon, you have to leave the canal at this point as there is a bridge here known as 'mile long bridge' which as the name suggests, is a mile long and inaccessable for pedestrians and cyclists. Once back on the canal it was back to the dreadful tow path, the following 2 hours were absolute hell, it just seemed like we werent getting anywhere and as the sun started to set it felt like the couple we had met in Burnley might have been right. However, we pushed hard and just before dark we arrived in Gargrave, to a friendly campsite just at the side of the canal! The owner was great, and as it was getting dark, allowed us to camp under a light so we could see to put our tent up. I then made full use of the facilities as this was the first wash id had in 90 miles, its safe to say i wasnt smelling too good before that shower!
After we had everything sorted it was off to 'The Old Swan' pub for some amazing food, Deep fried bree and sausage and mash, washed down with a couple of pints of black sheep! Once again, we were absolutely shattered and turned in at around 10pm in order to get up early and start the final leg of the journey!
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