Maps added

I have now added maps to all of the posts. I wasn’t just tired, there were some nice hills on the way.


UK trip a short summary

Total distance: 2600.7 km (1625 miles)

Total time: 135.12 hrs

Avg speed for the trip: 19.24 km/h

Avg dist per day: 113.07 km (70.7 miles)

5 days from Edinburgh to John O’Groats

14 days from John O’Groats to Land’s End

4 days from Land’s End to Twickenham

NO PAINKILLERS – first trip without them.Felt so much better prepared. Legs worked really well. After first few days when I had the problem with Achilles tendons, were fine.

Loads and loads of litres of water, juice, isotonic drinks.

The steepest gradient up or down 16%.(I think)

Toughest uphill – without reviewing the whole blog the one that comes to my mind is the one to Much Wenlock. I think it was marked at 12% – but it was constant direct up. There were very tough ones – very long, very steep but this is the one I would single out.

John O’Groats – close to the end of the world. (Met Shaun – cyclist from Leeds doing JOG – LE in Honiton – it was his comment). Very barren but very beautiful.

The most surprising landscapes: route from Gairlochry – Oban, Oban – Lochranza and Ardrossan – Thornhill. Beautiful – the whole trip.

  • Equipment: bike – Ridgeback – Velocity taken care by Moore’s Cycles guys in Twickenham, with Specialised Avatar Geometry saddle – here.
  • Back panniers – Altura – Dryline – they are waterproof – tested. Couple of Specialised cycling bibs, Three cycling shirts, Chamois cream – Butt’r and Ozon – both great. One winter and one summer cycling jersey. Clothes change – one shirt and one pair of 3/4 trousers that I could use in the evening after the cycling. Leg warmers. Waterproofs – jacket. Sunblock – SPF 30
  • Camping tent – Terra Nova Voyager Superlite – here, Term-A-Rest Prolite Plus mattress – here, Eris 250 Sleeping Bag by Gelert – here,

Day 23 10/8/2011 Salisbury – Twickenham

Dist: 132.99 km
Time: 6:48:45
Avg speed: 19.5 km/h
Max speed: 53.8
Total dist: 2600.7 km
Total time: 135.12

Route map

So after 2600 km – can’t believe it clocked just in at 2600 km (1625 miles) – I arrived to Twickenham. It will take a few good days to go through all of the emotions and digest the whole adventure. Now it will be the time to look back and enjoy all of the trip again.

Today the stage was a bit of a blur all day. It started with some up and downhills to Andover. Then I took the B 3400 to Basingstoke. Excellent for a ride and very nice scenery.

Then from Basingstoke parts of the route were very busy right down to Twickenham.

There was no time for many emotions as I had to watch my backside all the time.

Stepped in shops on my way home and got some food for a few days.

Now will try to get some photos and put the whole blog together.

Day 22 9/8/2011 Honiton – Salisbury

Dist: 120.24 km
Time: 6:26:22
Avg speed: 18.6 km/h
Max speed: 49.8
Total dist: 2467.7 km
Total time: 128.23

Route map

I knew that I was up for a challenge this morning as most of the route to and past Yeovil was marked as scenic. And it was eye and brow watering.

By the time I got to Chard I was shuttered already and I was only a few miles away from Honiton.

The rest of the route to Shaftesbury and Ludwell was just like this. I couldn’t believe it. Hill after hill after hill after hill…. By that time I had done 80+ km it was 3pm, I had more than 5hrs in the saddle and wouldn’t have swapped this time for anything. It was brilliant. Quite a bit of traffic on A30 but is the one to recommend as well. The uphill to Shaftesbury! 😛

As I was cycling through all the hills I was wondering whether whoever designed the route took the challenge to go through all of the deeps and tops possible.

Once past Ludwell there was one big hill on the horizon and I was so curious to see if the road still manages to go across it.

To my total dismay and my legs relief the route meandered in between hills till Salisbury.

Of course there were still some hidden dips and blind summits but I was getting some rhythm into my ride and soon the long kilometers to go were becoming less and less and before I knew it I was in Salisbury.

Got a guest house from tourist info board. It turned out to be a great place and Michael (the owner) suggested nice places to visit and eat in.

Went to the Cathedral. Caught the last few minutes of the choir and spent some time wondering around and sitting and thinking.

Then ended up having a meal in a pub Rai D’Or with the best Thai food I have tasted in UK. Worth coming.

Day 21 8/8/2011 Liskeard – Honiton

Dist: 125.10 km
Time: 6:17:07
Avg speed: 19.9 km/h
Max speed: 54
Total dist: 2347.4 km
Total time: 121.57

Route map

After the very early breakfast (7am) I was ready to go at 8. And…. puncture in back tire. So after sorting out the thing I started off at 8.45. Nasty piece of glass.

It has been a great day for a cycle. A bit busy on main roads but relatively safe.

Started off with couple of uphills to Saltash and a great ride over the bridge to Plymouth.

Stopped in Saltash to get new inner tube but the shop was miles away so I didn’t go.

After cycling on the by-pass around Plymouth I got to Lee Mill. Nothing there. Next stop Ivybridge – got the new tube. The rest was relatively flat with beautiful views of Dartmoor. There was a steeper hill just before Exeter. Few km of ascending through woodlands. All drivers were really nice on the uphill and were leaving me loads of space.

The other longer uphill came before Ottery St Mary.

Arrived to Honiton way before 4 pm. Really nice and quick day.

A38 – nicely designed road. Really well thought through. Couple of passes through hills but very slowly rising. Hard shoulder not as good as A30. After Exeter I was back on A30 and apart from the noise – really nice ride.

Honiton – very nice little town. Apparently plenty of retired people. Well I’m staying at B&B of a retired couple. What a great house. What features. Needs a bit of doing up but the furniture and decor – massive possibilities. Looks around Victorian era.

Supper at Nepalese place. Tasty. So full I can’t move.

Well it looks like A30 all the way to Twickenham.