Route MD - Audlem to Market Drayton (15-25 miles-easy / moderate)

ADAPT » Cycle Maps » Route MD - Audlem to Market Drayton (15-25 miles-easy / moderate)

Here you have a choice of two back road routes and another shorter route which is evenly split between canal towpath and back roads. All of them are delightfully rural and avoid the narrow and intimidating A529 route. Don't, however, be tempted to take the direct route all the way by towpath, which involves travel through the very wet Betton Wood (or Brownhills Wood) section, which is unpleasant at best but often impassable, definitely so after rain.

Route MD1 (17.0 miles-moderate) — East route

  • The road crossing of the A525 at the end of School Lane requires care, as does the short section of A525 leaving Audlem.
  • Thereafter, this route is largely on back roads and lanes and travels through the pretty village of Norton in Hales.
  • There is a fairly lengthy climb of moderate gradient to the north of Norton in Hales. However, it's worth the effort as the views from the summit can be stunning.
  • The remainder of the route is fairly flat.
  • Refreshments: The Hinds Head, Norton in Hales

Route MD2 (24.5 miles-easy) — West route

  • Leaving Audlem by the same means as Route MD1, this slightly longer route avoids the hill to the north of Norton in Hales and is a highly scenic rural route.
  • The road crossing of the A525 at the end of School Lane requires care, as does the short section of A525 leaving Audlem.
  • The crossing of the main A529 road at Coxbank has limited line of sight and requires great care.
  • Dismounting is required across the footpath on the approach to Market Drayton.

Route MD* (15.4 miles-moderate) — Towpath route to Adderley Wharf (Bridge 69)

  • Approximately half of the route is on towpath which can be muddy and slippery after rain. Not recommended in wet or icy winter conditions.
  • The towpath between Audlem Wharf and Bagley Lane (No 76) can be busy with walkers at weekends. Please be courteous and follow the towpath code.
  • Route MD* is fairly flat with no steep gradients, other than the short slope to and from the towpath at Adderley Wharf Bridge (No 69) (Dismount required).
  • Refreshments:
    The Hinds Head, Norton in Hales (Route MD1 only)
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