Ashton-Pill Loop

Ability lvl:

Challenging

Approx. Time:

2.5 - 3.5 hours

Length:

15.2 miles

A trip along the length of the River Avon from central Bristol almost to its mouth and back again.

  • Queen Square.
  • The Clifton Rocks Railway was designed to reduce impact on its surroundings and if you don’t look you can still miss it. It was opened in 1893 to take passengers from the ferry landing stages by the river up to Clifton. It closed in 1934.
  • The viewpoint here looks down on Horseshoe Bend. When Bristol was still a busy port this section was notorious for ships running aground.
  • It is a slightly unnerving experience knowing that you are cycling alongside a motorway, but it is a safe and well segregated path and the views are well worth it.
  • Pill was traditionally home to pilots who would guide shipping up to Bristol. This now goes no further than Avonmouth Docks, but Pill still retains the feel of a seafaring town.
  • This section of the Avon Gorge is home to lots of wildlife and there are cycle routes up through Leigh Woods to investigate further. You are also aware of the transport route the cycle path is part of with the River alongside the Portishead railway line and over the other side of the river the A4 which you cycled alongside on the outbound journey.
  • Clifton Suspension Bridge was completed in 1864 to a design by Brunel. Unfortunately he had died in 1859 so never saw it completed. In many ways it looks more spectacular from underneath than when you are on it.
  • The Chocolate Path is so called because the surface resembles a giant chocolate bar!


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