Muni ride at Rivington Lever Park [write up and photos]

So after the Mt Snowdon muni trip Steve my work mate was itching for more muni action so a day ride at Rivington Lever Park was planned. Steve has been riding for a few months now and is totally hooked, his skill progression has been amazing and I was looking forward to riding with him again.

The day started at 8.00am with Steve collecting me and then it was a quick drive to Rivington where we started the ride at 9.15am. The car park was being to fill up early with family’s and dog walkers making the most of the weekend. The sky was a glorious bright blue with barely a cloud insight and the sun was already beating down.

After a easy start on some bridle paths it started getting more interesting as we began to slowly climb towards the Pigeon Tower. I remember when I was learning, hill climbing and more specifically offroad hill climbing was a struggle, Steve had been practising hill climbing recently and it showed as he powered up beside me.

From the the Pigeon Tower it was short ride to the start of the path towards the Watch Tower. The Pigeon Tower has three stories with the top room being Lady Lever’s sewing room and the lower two levels housing ornamental doves and pigeons. [source].

There are two ridable paths down from the Watch Tower, one path winds round the hill like a Helta Skelta the other is a much more rockier steeper descend with rolling drops at the top. One look at Steve and it was clear that he wanted to give the Harder route a go! After a quick look at the potential lines available and a few false starts I made it down clearing an unexpected drop near the end. Chuffed. Steve not to be out done had a good crack at the top section clearing some tricky parts. He’s still got to learn how to control the Uni on steep descends by using the handle but I was impressed with what he managed on his first go.

At the foot of the hill from the Tower is a set of stone steps, about 10 sets in all. The stones aren’t even and some have lip edges that cause the uni to bounce around when you ride down them. Never managed all 10 sets in one go yet but did impress a watching mountain biking as I cleared the last 4 sets and a nice drop at the end. It’s funny how it looks harder on a uni but really I’d be more concerned with doing it on my bike. As was the theme for the day Steve had never done steps before so obviously he’d be clearing one of the sets after a few attempts!

Next we followed the path down to the Terraced Gardens which is a haven for natural trials. Rock ledges and structures are everywhere with plenty more stone slab steps for Steve to practice his dropping on. Not releasing quite what he was attempting he cleared 3 steps on his first effort.

The Terraced Gardens lead down to the Ornamental Japanese Pool. There is only a couple sat eating some food and the peace is only slightly disturbed as stones ping off our frames. We did a few small laps of the pool purely because it was such a nice location to leave so soon after arriving.

A bit more bridle paths lead to a nice loose rocky descend. This has been our yard stick for a few rides to see how far we can make it down before upd’ing. A mountain biker passes us on the way down (he’s on the easy path to the side) and proceeds to wait at the bottom with a camera at the ready. Not wanting to disappoint I make it down from about halve way up all the way to the grinning biker. Steve joins me after making it down and we chat with the biker about unicycles and the growing sport.

More cross country riding leads us down to Rivington Hall Barn, a cafe which is a gathering spot for local bikers, as well as walkers, mountain bikers and people enjoying a day out.

After some lunch and answering questions from the two wheeled bikers (pedal and petrol powered) we set off for a ride along the edge of the reservoir which leads to a castle ruins. Well actually it’s a Victorian replica of the Liverpool Castle Ruins of 1725, faithfully recreated in 1912 by direction of Lord Leverhulme. I wonder how many people like me on first site of the ruins wondered what it looked like only to find out that actually it was built as a ruin in the first place!

Sadly the rides nearly over and it’s just a short pedal back to the car park, which by now is completely full. Sweaty pads and helmets off, jobs done.

Riding with Steve is so inspirational, it’s a joy to see a new rider tackle harder and harder terrain and master lines after such dogged determination (he just doesn’t give up!). It’s catching as well, I found myself attempting more challenging lines and bigger drops than i would usually do, caught up with his endless enthusiasm.

So a brilliant day was had, with lots of friendly inquisitive people, varied terrain, with stunning and interesting scenery.

More larger photos here

Ride Stats
8.7 miles
4 hours 40 mins
1000 feet ascending/descending







Pigeon Tower


Steve with the Watch Tower in the background


By the Japanese Pool


Neil by the reservoir


Castle ruins


Nice pics Neil.
Looks like a great place to ride.
That slope down from the tower looks a bit bleein’ steep.
Tell Steve I said hi.

Sounds/looks like you had fun.

Great weather too.

Is that the same route we took when we rode with Steve Colligan?

Looks like you had a grand time, good to see Steve ripping up Rivington. Going to have to get some more riding in with you chaps before you go away.

Sounds like you had a great time.

I can’t believe I didn’t bump into you guy as I was up there training for Mountain Mayhem. I was only up there for 2 1/2 hours, but managed to tot up 18.5 miles and 730 metres of ascent. I was doing more xc than anything technical, but it would have been cool if we’d accidentally bumped into each other.

It really is beautiful up there as everyone can see from the excellent photos.


Cheers Blue, Steve says Hi back. It’s a great place to ride. So much variation and I’ve found new sections every time I’ve been.

On days like that you just have to get out for a ride if you can.

Yep I followed the route we first did with Steve Colligan as it was a nice route to follow. Defo would be good to get some more riding done, N.U.T.S? and I’m also still up for doing that video filming for you when your toes better?

I did wonder if we might have bumped into you but remembered that you said you like to get an early start. I’d love to see your training route that you do and give it a go on the 29er as it was much more of a play ride when we went last weekend.

GK I’m not one of those posing people who wear sunglasses all the time :wink: I only wear them when it’s sunny which is also the most likeliest time that I will have the camera out and taking photos. I am however much more likely to be wearing those grey shorts and a white t-shirt for all of my riding!

Just for you :slight_smile:

I’ve never seen Norry sans shades either.
I do not believe that’s him in the link.
That’s a photo of a stunt double, posted to keep the conspiracy theorists quiet.


I’m glad you never framed that picture with a big love heart, people would start taking :sunglasses:

Hmm, yeah, now that you mention it, it does look like the cover to a Jackie annual circa 1986.

Not that I used to read Jackie.

I just wanted to make that clear.