The Mary Towneley Loop is one of those MTB trail epics to tick off the list.
Set on the Pennine bridleway along the border of Lancashire and Yorkshire the trail is a whopping 75km (47 miles) long.
It's not renowned for being overly technical (although it does have many steep climbs) but its distance makes it quite harsh. 7 - 10 hours to complete in a day would be very respectable and doing it over two or even three days is not uncommon.
Mary Townley Loop Trail
- Given the distance the terrain is unsurprisingly mixed. You get stone causeway, gravel, grass and tarmac. You will find yourself in open moorland, valleys and reservoirs etc. Part of the routes appeal is the mix of open countryside set in the backdrop of a post industrial urban setting. There is a lived in feel to the industrial fells here that appeals to many and gives it something quite unique.
- The trail is waymarked (follow the National Trail Acorn).
- Mountain bikers more often ride the Loop anti-clockwise.
- Being a Loop there are many start points though and so best to review the map and decide from a transport perspective what works best.
Closest Bike Shops
- Rawtenstall/Waterfoot, Hebden Bridge, Todmorden and Broadley.
Maps and Guides
- Mary Townley Loop Challenge takes place in September
Groups and Clubs
- Lady Mary Towneley was a horse rider who campaigned for the Pennine Bridleway National Trail.
- Pic credit to Trevor Smith