This page was last updated Thu 24 May 2018.
Contents: Tours (8)
All descriptions are in English, unless otherwise noted.
|Home to the Rhone via Barcelona
tour started July 2007, submitted 9 September 2007
My first tour without a firm objective. I knew I wanted to start from my front door and meet up with my family somewhere in the Ardèche. Barcelona seemed like a reasonable intermediate destination, but the rest was pretty much à la carte.
The resulting -less thorough than usual- planning was noticeable, as the route featured more major roads than I would normally prefer, and even turned around and bit me on the day two when I needed a train to complete the second half of the route.
However, there were still plenty of opportunities to bask in the quality of the French road network and many pleasant surprises, as towns I had given scant regard while planning the route turned out to be fantastic places to visit.
|Basel to Bellinzona
tour started September 2006, submitted 9 September 2007
Another shorter than expected tour, this time in Switzerland, generally following Veloroute 2 (the Rhein Route) from Basel past Rheinfall, Bodensee, Liechtenstein and Chur to Andermatt via Oberalp pass, then over St Gotthard pass and onto the Italian border.
In what seems to be the theme of his years tours, events conspired to thwart the original plan of connecting July's tour (Copenhagen to Freiberg) with it's intended destination: Venice.
A freak, non-cycling related, knee injury on the third evening left me unable to bend my left leg; which meant the only way I was getting to Venice was by train.
Despite this (and the fact that it rained solidly for two and a half of the four days on the bike), it was still an enjoyable tour with some great sights and new personal achievements.
|Copenhagen to Freiberg
tour started July 2006, submitted 9 September 2007
In theory this was second stage of a three part trip that was supposed to cover Europe from Nordkapp (the North Cape) to Sicily. The plan being to pick-up from where last year's trip left off in Copenhagen and head south to Freiberg in Germany and then onwards to Venice via the Alps.
The bike was damaged on the flight over, leaving me with a limited selection of gears and the tour happened to coincide with a heat wave the like of which no-one could recall. Most of the trip took place in temperatures close to or over 40 degrees celsius (104 fahrenheit)!
Things got worse at the half way point (just south of Frankfurt) when the loss of my mobile phone, money and credit cards forced me to abandon the trip a day later at Strasbourg. It was only a total stranger's act of kindness that allowed me to get that far.
|Paris to Geneva
tour started April 2006, submitted 9 September 2007
Another Easter holiday four day, partially supported, mini-tour extending last year's London - Paris trip onto Geneva.
Once again the weather was still what you might expect in April, with the added bonus of snow and freezing rain in the Jura region, but at least last year's constant headwind had subsided into a mere crosswind.
|Scandinavia (Nordkapp to Copenhagen)
tour started June 2005, submitted 9 September 2007
The original plan was to cover Scandinavia from Nordkapp to Copenhagen with a long stretch along Sweden's east coast. However, safety concerns resulted in a hastily arranged detour along Finland's west coast.
My memory will be mainly of glorious sunshine and, another pleasant surprise, the wind blowing North to South for a good few days when I needed it (as evidenced by the grim determination on the faces of the cyclists heading the other way.)
|London to Paris (Two Towers)
tour started April 2005, submitted 9 September 2007
A four day tour from London to Paris over Easter to try and get my fitness back on track for a bigger trip later in the year.
Despite the less than perfect weather and near constant headwinds this was a really enjoyable trip, if only because it totally dispelled my preconceptions of the French and their attitude to us Brits!
|Around Iceland (sort of)
tour started July 2004, submitted 9 September 2007
The trip improved immensely upon abandoning the notion that it was somehow possible to get right around route one and still make my flight home.
Despite the variable weather, impossible winds, terrible roads, absurd prices and murderous wildlife, Iceland is a fantastic country with genuinely friendly people and some of the most amazing scenery anywhere!
Most importantly, allow more time than you think you need to see it all; for a small country Iceland feels vast!
|John O'Groats to Lands End
tour started June 2003, submitted 9 September 2007
My first tour and the reason the web site was set up in the first place. The site's original purpose was to help raise sponsorship for an unassisted charity cycle ride originally called the 'Anglo-Swiss Charity Bike Ride', after the nationalities of the two participants.
It was an unforgettable trip of a thousand miles on a pair of poorly equipped mountain bikes that raised over £1,500 for the National Autistic Society.