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01. Nov, 2010

Coast to Coast 3 – Rookhope to Tynemouth

Coast to Coast 3 – Rookhope to Tynemouth

The final stretch and our priorities were to get to Tynemouth by 3:30 to give us time to return to Newcastle for the train, and most importantly to arrive before the boys.

We started with an off-road climb out of Rookhope. The road was too muddy and stony to ride so we pushed the bikes up. Once at the top we had a fabulous long stretch over the tops of the hills with the sun slowly beginning to show through the clouds. We felt very lucky to have it all to ourselves. (more…)

01. Nov, 2010

Coast to Coast 2 – Kirkoswald to Rookhope

Coast to Coast 2 – Kirkoswald to Rookhope

Today we were being chased by Steve, Will and James – friends from London who had decided to do the route in two days. We had 35 miles to cover to Rookhope on our heavy bikes, whilst they travelling light had 95. The thought they might catch us on route drove us on throughout the day.

We left at 9.00 after bacon and egg rolls and chatting with three guys also cycling the route. They’d found it tough going too and looked a bit worried at the day ahead. The weather wasn’t so good and we were in Gortex from head to toe, which we both agreed was the greatest thing ever.

The morning started with an eight mile climb from 180 to 580m (1903ft) above sea level to the top of Hartside Fell. It was steep, cold, wet and hailing but pedalling along slowly was doable. The killer was the headwind that reduced us to a walking pace. (more…)

29. Oct, 2010

Coast to Coast 1 – Whitehaven to Kirkoswald

Coast to Coast 1 – Whitehaven to Kirkoswald

Wide awake at 6am, too excited to sleep we were on the road for by 8am. After fearing awful conditions the weather was great for cycling. It was this week last year that Cumbria suffered the devastating floods so luck was definitely on our side.

Starting with the customary dip of the back wheels in the Irish Sea we set off along an old railway line which rose steadily out of Whitehaven and quickly took us to the top of some stunning views and away from civilisation. The route took us through the Lake District, which was spectacular with all the colours of autumn and just a shame we couldn’t have stopped more to really appreciate it. (more…)