Sunday, 18 September 2011

Final Thoughts

·      If I had more time, it would be nice to take more time and see more of the country. There were times that I felt slightly pressured to carry on to reach my destination in good time. On the other hand, I could have done the journey quicker, it just depends on what you want to achieve. I tried to get a balance of a physically challenging ride and enjoying the countryside on the way up.
·      I found it very useful to book accommodation in advance. As I had arranged to be at the end on a certain day, having a target to aim for each day helped with motivation.
·      Use B&B’s not hotels. Every one is different and you will meet some great people. Most were like a home from home which is what you want after a long ride.
·      Using the gps was great. I plotted all my routes before I left but there were a couple of times where I changed my plans and it helped me to find a different route.
·      Don’t stick rigidly to routes if you fancy a change.
·      Treat each day as a separate ride. If you look at it as one ride, it does seem quite daunting!
·      Split each day down so always somewhere to aim for. I split each day into 3 or 4 parts so that I had between 20 and 30 miles between stops where I could refuel.
·      Pack as light as you can, I took no spare cycling kit, washing it each evening. My luggage fitted in a 11 litre Vaude rack bag and weighed 4 kg
·      Write a diary at the end of each day otherwise you will forget all the little things along the way that make the journey so special.
·      Don’t underestimate what you can achieve but also respect the importance of preparation and training.
·      I completed ride on a single speed On One Pompino running a 48x18 gear. Running a geared bike would have been easier (obviously) but if you have trained for such a ride, one gear was usually enough. It is lighter, quieter, stronger and less to go wrong (and therefore less spares to carry). If I was to carry camping gear too, a geared bike would be much more sensible (or a lower geared single speed!)

  • Finally, I am hugely grateful for all the support, donations, offers of meals, places to stay and overall generosity of  everyone involved in helping me accomplish this ride.  


1 comment:

  1. Great blog Mark. I just bought a Pompino myself. Inspiring stuff!