Archive for July, 2013

Day 10 – Hawes to Carlisle

Posted in Lejog with tags , , on July 16, 2013 by lejogsb9

Woke up to a slightly cooler day today. The statutory climb was upon us within two miles of leaving Hawes and led us straight into a strong headwind. Turning right at the top we were on the cusp of leaving Yorkshire and into Cumbria. Finding 10 feet of land between the two signposts Sye decided to claim it for himself. So please do stop and visit Syemanland if you are ever in the area. With the climb done and dusted we pedalled apace to Appleby where some of us enjoyed the savoured the local dish of fruit loaf and cheese. The rest of the route was fairly flat although the beautiful views continued – yes, from time to time we do remember to look up from the tarmac! We then pushed onto Carlisle and came in on a main road which was pretty daunting at times. We also had to navigate a motorway island and then turn right across 2 lanes of fast moving traffic to reach our hotel. It resembled something out of Wacky Races!

 

Welcome to Cumbria

Day 9 – Huddersfield to Hawes

Posted in Lejog with tags , , on July 16, 2013 by lejogsb9

Today we were promised that it would an easier day from our Tour Leader. By the end of the day we’d decided we didn’t believe his promises anymore. Climbing Mount Tabor onto the Yorkshire Moors was a long drag although it was worth it for the fantastic views that awaited us. Our route took us to Haworth where we stopped for well earned refreshments before heading onto Skipton for lunch. Richard and Patrick pushed on ahead so with the 6 Lejog ladies and Sye we prepared ourselves for the ascent (notice a change in vocabulary from climb to ascent) over Fleet Moss. This will be a stage in the Tour de France next year – just remember we got there first!!! We do somehow think that the professionals will be climbing at a higher speed than 3 miles an hour! Once at the top we knew we had reached the highest point of the tour at 2000 feet. The day ended with a wonderful descent into Hawes and a burst tyre for Jayne.

Factoid: We are now half way!

Day 8 – Youlgreave to Huddersfield

Posted in Lejog with tags , , on July 16, 2013 by lejogsb9

With hardly time to settle our breakfast we were were straight into climbing mode through Bakewell and onto Bamford. It was upon entering Bamford that Patrick was overtaken by a car which then cut straight in front of him to enter a petrol station. Fortunately he just managed to keep his bike upright as the car had made contact with his handle bars. Having a word with the driver it became apparent that they hadn’t even been aware of his existence or that they had made contact! After a short refreshment break and with the temperature continuing to rise we knew we had another big climb ahead. After passing Ladybower Reservoir the climb proved to be a toughy and offered up some extremely steep sections. The heat off the tarmac was incredible. Once at the top we headed for Langsett Reservoir where we were greeted with the smiling faces of our friends Jill and Mark and Liz and Simon who were joining us at our hotel for the evening.

 

Celebrating at the top of Fleet Moss.

Celebrating at the top of Fleet Moss.

Day 7 – Shifnal to Youlgreave

Posted in Lejog with tags , , on July 16, 2013 by lejogsb9
Our bed for the night - The old Co Operative stores.

Our bed for the night – The old Co Operative stores.

 

A fair to middling day from Staffordshire en-route to Derbyshire. With soaring temperatures we encountered a big climb at the hottest part of the day! It was at this point that we lost contact with Sandra and Sye who literally ended up cycling past the gates of Alton Towers! Overall it was a mix of cycling terrain that included grotty off road, steep descents, long stretches of paved disused railway track that offer a very scenic and relaxed approach to our ride into the Peak District. Seven miles before Youlgreave we stopped for a long, lazy lunch and a bit of a stretch. After a very hot and extremely dusty day we swiftly headed to the local pub for a much needed quench of the thirst. Debbie was also able to meet up with Dave for the evening.

Day 6 – Hereford to Shifnal

Posted in Lejog with tags , , , on July 11, 2013 by lejogsb9

Crossing at Ironbridge

Today was an easy day compared to what we have been experiencing over the last few days. Did you think we would every say “Shropshire made for easy cycling?” With an early start some of us were making the most of catching up with family as were so close to home. We had a mid morning break in Ludlow and pedalled onto Much Wenlock where Richard caught up with us having gone AWOL the previous evening. Within 10 minutes of arriving home he was up a ladder carrying out some remedial work on the house. We arrived in Ironbridge early afternoon where we could almost smell the faggots and peas in the Black Country. Alas, we couldn’t escape the climb out of Coalport. We reached Shifnal around 2.30 and made the most of a sports massage and a dip in the hotel pool.

Day 5 – Exeter to Hereford

Posted in Lejog with tags , , on July 11, 2013 by lejogsb9

Exeter to Hereford

Today was a day of 3 tours. Le tour de Richard, who left extremely early as this was to be the longest day at just over 80 miles and he was making a quick trip home.

Le tour de Sally, Patrick, Deb and Jane who were looking to get to Hereford as soon as possible. They were trailed by Le tour de Holiday by Sandra, Sye, Wendy and Pauline.  Still a fairly tough day with some big climbs in very slightly cooler weather.  Points of interest included crossing the Severn Bridge, Chepstow for lunch and Ross on Wye for afternoon tea and a bit of retail therapy.
Factoid of the day: We are now a quarter of the way there.
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Sye in his usual style made friends with Jean Morgan, a 97 year old who kindly filled our water bottles for us. Jean was a right character and tells us that she has ordered a special bikini to wear for her 100th birthday!
Sye and his new friend Jean.

Sye and his new friend Jean.

Day 4 – Exeter to Sidcot

Posted in Lejog with tags , , , on July 10, 2013 by lejogsb9
Exeter to Sidcot.
The nine ‘bugs’ woke up this morning hoping for an easier day after the mega hilly day of yesterday. We set off from Exeter at 8.45 and after stocking up with supplies at Sainburys, headed off for Sidcot, Cheddar. We had some wonderful stretches of flat roads, some gradual climbs and a few steep hills, but compared to the climbs of yesterday everyone found it much easier.  That is until the last 2 miles.  We got lost on a disused railway line.  The Garmins lost their signals when we encountered a long dark tunnel on a disused railway track “3 times” by mistake.  Sye thought we were in Netherton!  The day ended an hour later than expected with 70 miles on the clock.  Sandra also achieved a milestone today.  She has cycled 20,000 miles since joining Stourbug 4 1/2 years ago.  Congratulations Sandra!
Sandra celebrates 20,000 miles!

Sandra celebrates 20,000 miles!