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Advice Please : Carlisle to Gretna.

philkeeblephilkeeble Posts: 106
edited April 2011 in Tour & expedition
I’m cycling LEJOG with a friend in June and plan to follow the CTC route from Carlisle to Gretna which does a big loop to the east of the M6 in the Todhills area, through Longtown and around Solway Moss.

Now, looking at the latest MemoryMap I see a ‘yellow’ road paralleling the M6, servicing Todhills, and continuing across the motorway bridge over the River Esk. This would appear to cut off a big loop. I double-checked it on Google Maps and this also shows the road. Suspicious that if a road exists then the CTC route would follow it, I switched to satellite view. The road overlay stubbornly implies the road is there, but there is no sign of it on the satellite image. Just fields and wooded area, and no obvious parallel road across the Esk.

Can anyone confirm or refute the existence of this road?
Cheers,
Phil, in Inverurie

Posts

  • nwallacenwallace Posts: 1,465
    The A74 was upgraded to the M6 past Carlisle recently, and when a new Motorway is built there tends to be a non-motorway support road.

    Since Sustrans can't even map the obvious route from Blair Atholl to Pitlochry without sending you through a ford rated on "Wet Roads" as 4x4 only and then onto the A9, i'd take anything they routed as needing sanity checked.
    Do Nellyphants count?

    Commuter: FCN 9
    Cheapo Roadie: FCN 5
    Off Road: FCN 11

    +1 when I don't get round to shaving for x days
  • jibijibi Posts: 2,463
    I have always used the A7 to Longtown and then back to Gretna
  • andrew_sandrew_s Posts: 2,511
    There is a cycle route paralleling the M6/M74 between Carlisle and Gretna on new minor roads.

    This is the route (zoom in to see details)

    A lot of it is viewable on Streetview, though there's a tendency to slip on to the M6 whilst moving along.
    New road over Metal Bridge

    You've got to bear in mind that the Google aerial/satellite photos, as well as streetview, are snapshots and may be a few years out of date. In this case, the M6 streetview is before the completion of the parallel minor roads.
  • amaferangaamaferanga Posts: 6,789
    jibi wrote:
    I have always used the A7 to Longtown and then back to Gretna

    That used to be the best way, but there's a new (I say new but its been in use for at least 18 months) and direct route since the motorway upgrade.
    More problems but still living....
  • philkeeblephilkeeble Posts: 106
    Thanks, folks. Glad there's an explanation. We'll head for the direct route and save ourselves a couple of miles.

    By the way, nwallace, don't be too harsh on the Sustran's NCN routes. I've cycled the A9 route a couple of times and it is a brilliant route; well recommended. Despite initial perceptions, it does not have you cycling on the A9!
    Cheers,
    Phil, in Inverurie
  • nwallacenwallace Posts: 1,465
    What's the proper route after crossing the Garry flood then?
    I'm following the maps there, not the signs which of course send you the sensible way.

    And then shoves you on the sand towards Dunkeld.
    Do Nellyphants count?

    Commuter: FCN 9
    Cheapo Roadie: FCN 5
    Off Road: FCN 11

    +1 when I don't get round to shaving for x days
  • barney69barney69 Posts: 82
    I've recently done a reccy on that road as I'm doing LeJog in August and and have used the Longtown diversion in past.
    The road isn't well signposted as I believe they don't want it as a rat run between Carlisle (N) and Gretna but I can confirm it definately goes and isn't a bad road.
    The downsides:
    It is used a rat run and becomes busy at weekends
    I know a roady who was cycling in a pack and was hit by a car, he's just had to retire as a dentist as he has a hip problem

    Having said that I'll still be using it, just be wary


    and enjoy your trip!!
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    Road: 2011 Trek Madone 4.7
    Fun: 1973 Raleigh Chopper MKII

    http://www.nigelend2end.co.uk
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  • Which CTC route are you using? I've just downloaded CTC end to end routes and the first one gives the 'new route' directions between Carlisle and Gretna.
    The directions appear to have been taken from my posts on the CTC forum relating to the new road when it opened. There is now an extra roundabout at Kingstown Industrial Estate which is nearing completion. This is part of the Carlisle by pass which is currently under construction and due to open next year.
  • vernonlevyvernonlevy Posts: 969
    There is a none motorway traffic route that runs parallel to the upgraded A74/M6. It was the service road used for the road widening/upgrading to motorway project.

    Despite the claims that it is a rat run it has to be better than the old A74 'Cumberland Gap' which was a motorway in all but name and the hairiest stretch of road that i have ever cycled on.
  • vernonlevyvernonlevy Posts: 969
    There is a none motorway traffic route that runs parallel to the upgraded A74/M6. It was the service road used for the road widening/upgrading to motorway project.

    Despite the claims that it is a rat run it has to be better than the old A74 'Cumberland Gap' which was a motorway in all but name and the hairiest stretch of road that i have ever cycled on.
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