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Commuter route advice needed - Muswell Hill to Old St

finbarrfinbarr Posts: 3
edited September 2009 in Commuting chat
Anybody know a relatively traffic free route from Muswell Hill/Highgate woods to Old Street.

Did it for the first time today and found it pretty hairraising compared to my old south London to Old St ride.

Route taken was straight down muswell hill road, onto archway road then holloway road to Liverpool road turnoff - then Angel and onto City Road. On the map this looks the best route, though it is very busy, loads of traffic lights, and a right pain in the rs hill going back!

All ideas welcome



  • _Brun__Brun_ Posts: 1,740
    Archway Road is great, you can get in the outside lane and overtake everyone when they brake for the speed cameras. Ok, maybe not in rush hour but it works well later in the day.

    My suggestion would be to put your start and destination into google maps, then change the options from driving to walking. That will immediately give you the most direct route rather than following main roads. Just be aware that the walking directions can send you the wrong way down one way streets, and re-route accordingly.
  • Just had a look at the map to make sure, but my gut feeling was right. Your route is the one I would do, maybe not Liverpool Rd but Canonbury (depends on where in Old St I guess).

    So not much help there then. I guess it depends on how much extra you are prepared to do by way of detour/mileage to lessen the traffic issues or fitness levels.

    Nice hill home, that will get your heartbeat up. I cross your path at Holloway Rd/Tollington Junction in the mornings.

    Is there not a bus lane down Archway? should lessen the stress for a short stretch.
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  • AidyAidy Posts: 2,015
    Traffic free routes? In London? :)

    Your routing looks relatively sane to me, is there a part of it you particularly dislike? Maybe you could just reroute that bit.
  • cjcpcjcp Posts: 13,345
    Used to live in Highgate. Was never a fan of the Holloway Road, but I don't think I'm a fan of any London roads when I'm in a car! :) I think most routes seem busy when you do them for the first time because of their unfamiliarity. Stick with it and you'll get to know how the traffic tends to move/behave. :)
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  • Hi finbarr,

    The site can be useful for planning routes - and also posting up photos of hazards, etc, onto an open source map. It has a slight tendency to avoid the busiest roads and gives you a choice of routes, nominally called ''fastest'' and ''quietest.'' The quiestest option may give you clues about ways to avoid the worst of the traffic.

    Not knowing your exact location, I put Muswell Hill Road to Old Street (St Lukes) in and it came up with this:

    You of course will be able to search your own door to door route. I admit it makes odd choices but it can help you find alternative routes.
  • Start the same, but turn off Holloway onto Caledonian Road, follow it down along the back of Kings X that way - alternatively second exit at Highbury Corner and follow that road (Essex Road?), it'll bring you out by Moorfields eventually.

    When I first started commuting in London (High Barnet to Carnaby Street) it was pretty hairy - I still vividly remember the first time I negotiated Hyde Park Corner and (worse!) Shepherd's Bush Roundabout I was brown-trousered by it. I don't bat an eyelid now. It'll get easier.
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  • I do a similar journey from Hornsey to Moorgate and find the following OK .

    Down Muswell Hill and Park road into Crouch End. Up Crouch Hill and along Stroud Green Road to Finsbury Park Tube. Blackstock Road (which turns into Highbury Park & Highbury Grove). Turn right at the T junction and then the first exit at Highbury corner onto Canonbury Road. Follow this onto New North Road and you come out at Old Street Roundbout. It does take in quite a few hills, but it all adds to the fun!
  • Thanks for your help everyone - I have lots of ideas to try. Having done it a few times now it is seeming to get less manic, but I will try other ways.

    See that blur down Archway Hill, that's me. See that rasping wreck going up, that's also me.

  • Parkland walk from highgate tube to finsbury park (no cars ~ former railway line so steady incline on way back) then st Thomas rd, higbury hill, church path (lovely), highbury place, canonbury road, new north road to old street roundabout.

    Will take longer but once you've got your confidence and strength up you can revert to the most direct route of archway, holloway, canonbury & new north roads. It's the most direct, least up and down route and think of archway road on the way back as a benchmark to test your improving fitness against. Get your cadence and breathing right and it can be very satisfying.
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