GPS Cycle and Walking Routes

Huddersfield Narrow Canal

21 miles (33 km)

Follow the Huddersfield Narrow Canal from Greater Manchester into the Peak District on this easy waterside walk. The canal runs from Ashton-under-Lyne in Manchester to Huddersfield, passing lots of interesting towns and villages with some beautiful scenery to enjoy along the way. There's also historic mills, views of the Pennines and interesting museums to see.
You start off in Ashton-Under-Lyne and head east along the towpath to Stalybridge. The canal continues to Mossley where you have the option of taking a short detour to visit Hartshead Pike. You can climb to the 19th century Hartshead Pike Tower for fabulous views over the Pennines.
The route continues north to Uppermill and Diggle before coming to the Standedge Tunnels. The canal tunnel was opened in 1811 and is the longest and highest canal tunnel in the United Kingdom. Here the route leaves the canal and picks up the Standedge Trail to take you across Marsden Moorin thePennines. The estate is owned by the National Trust and consists of some lovely moorland scenery with valleys, peaks and crags. Look out for wildlife including golden plover, curlew, grouse and twite as you make your way over the hills.
The route rejoins the canal at the village of Marsden. It's a good place to stop for a rest with the Standedge Tunnel & Visitor Centre to explore. The centre has a good cafe, lots of information about the tunnels and organises underground boat trips. At Marsden there is also the option of taking a detour to visit Butterley Reservoir. This route continues along the canal to Slaithwaite, Sparth Reservoir and Linthwaite before finishing in Huddersfield. The canal then links with the Huddersfield Broad Canal which you can follow to Bradley. In Ashton-under-Lyne it links with the Ashton Canal which you can follow in central Manchester. It passes Manchester City Football Stadium and Manchester Velodrome before finishing at ManchesterPiccadilly.

Huddersfield Narrow Canal OS Map - Mobile GPS OS Map with Location tracking

Huddersfield Narrow Canal Open Street Map - Mobile GPS Map with Location tracking


On the walk stop at the Roaches Lock Inn in Mossley for some refreshments. The pub's main attraction is a lovely beer garden with fine views of the canal. It's an ideal spot for a rest on a fine day. You can find it at 387 Manchester Road with postcode OL5 9BB for your sat nav.
In Slaithwaite we recommend The Little Bridge which has a delightful outdoor terrace overlooking the canal. There's also a great menu and a cosy fire indoors on colder days. You can find the pub right next to the canal on Britannia Road with a postcode of HD7 5HF.
Near the start of the canal at At Portland Basin there's an excellent museum with an adjacent cafe. There's a good menu and outdoor seating where you can sit and watch the boats go by on finer days. You can even take a boat trip from here and experience the canal from a different perspective. The Portland Basin Museum is also well worth exploring if you have time. It's housed within the restored nineteenth century Ashton Canal Warehouse and combines a lively modern interior with a peaceful canal side setting. Inside you can see a series of interesting exhibitions detailing the history of Tameside's industrial heritage.
The Waggon Inn in Uppermill is also worthy of consideration. This 19th Century coaching inn includes a comfortable lounge, bar and dining area with a good menu. There's also a lovely outdoor area where you can relax on warmer days. You can find it on the High Street with a postcode of OL3 6HR for your sat navs.

Further Information and Other Local Ideas

The Pule Hill Walk starts from Marsden train station and uses a section of the canal and the Standedge trail to create a circular walk around the the moors and the hill. There's excellent views across the town and the canal from the vantage point at the hill summit. Just to the south of the hill there's the walk to Redbrook Reservoir and Black Moss Reservoir too.
For more walking ideas in the area see the Greater Manchester Walks, South Pennines Walks and Peak District Walks pages.


Huddersfield Narrow 3743

TheHuddersfield Narrow Canalwest starts at the Whitelands Basin. Locks are numbered from both the western Ashton end and the eastern end, distinguished with the letters E and W.

Huddersfield Narrow Canal (17791636668)

View between Marsden and Slaithwaite

Huddersfield Narrow Canal (26942124612)

Cottage by the canal

Huddersfield Narrow Canal (34668007550)

Locks on the canal

Huddersfield Narrow Canal (41493811055)

Beautiful view on a sunny day

Buildings by the Huddersfield Narrow Canal (3790104248)

Buildings by the Huddersfield Narrow Canal. Here the canal is emerging from Bates Tunnel.

Huddersfield Canal at Slaithwaite - - 2191

Looking west along the Huddersfield Narrow Canal from Lock 21e at Slaithwaite, West Yorkshire. This section of canal had been filled in but was restored and re-opened in 2001

Huddersfield Canal, Slaithwaite - - 165031

Canal at Slaithwaite. The single storey mill to the left is what is left of No 1 Mill of the Slaithwaite Spinning Co built in 1877 and the top mill is Globe Mill.


GPS Files

GPX File

Huddersfield Narrow Canal.gpx (On Desktop:Right Click>'Save As. On Ipad/Iphone:Click and hold>Share>Save to Files')

Memory Map Route

Huddersfield Narrow Canal.mmo (On Desktop:Right Click>'Save As. On Ipad/Iphone:Click and hold >Share>Save to Files)