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Enjoying the Countryside


Whenever you go into the countryside it’s best to be prepared.


Walking

What to wear: -

Walking boots or stout shoes are recommended if you are walking, as some paths may be rough, muddy or steep. You should also bring waterproofs and warm clothing as the weather can change quickly.

What to bring: -

Drinks and snacks are always useful and don't forget a packed lunch on the all-day walks. Also pack your sunscreen - just in case!

Maps: -

For walking we would recommend you take the relevant OS Explorer map while for cycling the OS Landranger maps may be more appropriate.

Cycling

If you plan your cycle ride in advance you’ll always get the best out of your day.
Are you up to it?

Most of the routes in Cheshire are undulating with just a few hills to negotiate but in the east of the county, near Macclesfield and Congleton, there are some very long and steep climbs that require plenty of stamina to get up the hills - and very good brakes for the descent!

There are plenty of pubs and shops in villages and towns but in rural areas you may have to travel many miles before finding a refreshment stop, and cycling can be thirsty work. Take a drink and a snack. There are so many beautiful locations to stop, admire the view and take a breather. Enjoy it!

Is your bike up to it?

If you think that you may be cycling at dusk, fit lights to your bike and wear a reflective jacket or waistcoat. Most of our routes follow country lanes and quieter roads, but many use old railway lines or canal towpaths so the tyres on your bike need to be able to manage a crushed stone type surface. It’s always worth taking a spare inner tube or puncture repair kit with you too.

Horse Riding

Be sure of your route before you set off and wear high visibility clothing for road riding, so that drivers can see you (thank courteous drivers). You must wear protective headgear that complies with the current standard BS EN1384, PAS015, or ASTMF1163.

Please be courteous to other path users and be aware that walkers and cyclists are sometimes unfamiliar with horses; you may need to slow down and give a wide berth to pass them. Make use of the specially designed horse tracks at the sites where they exist and if your horse is young or easily startled, take care on routes that are shared with cyclists. Finally, if your horse pays a call of nature in one of the car parks, please clear up after it!

For more advice on riding safely, visit the British Horse Society’s website.

For details of the Countryside Code and other access information visit www.countrysideaccess.gov.uk

Canoeing

Equipment

Whether you are using your own boat or a group boat, you should check it is suitable for the activity. All boats should be water-tight and have personal floatation aids in the form of a life jacket or buoyancy aid. You
will be putting your own safety at risk if you don’t check these details on every outing. Some trips may be long, so ensure you have suitable warm clothing or a change of clothes. You may also need food or means to purchase food on
longer trips.

When Planning a Trip

There are a number of points to consider. While very little should go wrong it’s important that you consider options if your trip has to change for some reason.

1. Plan a trip that you or the group can manage. Be sure you can
complete your trip or have means to shorten the trip if you have a
problem or the weather turns bad.

2. Take a map. If you do need support, having a map whether it is a trail
map or another map will help you find other roads or services if
required.

3. Take the correct equipment for you or your group and be sure you
know how to use it.

4. Tell someone where you are going and when you hope to return. Take
a mobile phone in a dry bag so you can let people know if there is a
change of plan.

Be Considerate to Others.

There are a number of things to consider when on the water to ensure you and other users have a good experience. It’s important to be aware of other users, both on the water and on dry land,when using the banks for access, portages or food stops.

Other users include:

• Barge and river boats

• Fishermen

• Walkers

• Cyclists

• Sports clubs including sailing, rowing and canoeing

• People who work on the waterways including businesses who work next to the waterway

• People who live on the waterway or properties that back on to the
network.

You should be courteous at all times, ensure your equipment is not blocking other people, take your litter home and keep noise to an appropriate level. It’s also important not to loiter in one area for too long if this would cause a nuisance. Finally, when parking vehicles for the trip, park responsibly. Park appropriately and be sure you are discreet when changing into or from your paddling kit.  For more information, contact the British Canoe Union.