It has been a long time since my first post for this ride. The main reason I did not get round to making an update is that I could not work out how to get rid of the posts from the 2015 and 2013 trips without just deleting them. I think I have now succeeded in moving them to separate pages. So apologies for the length of this. I promise future posts will be shorter.
We survived our pre Christmas visit to Florida, we survived our over eating and drinking at Christmas and New Year. We even survived our week skiing without any injuries that would prevent us cycling.
But … the weather in January was not very inviting so we did not do much more than the odd 10 mile loop round the back of Braishfield.
We did manage 25 miles one day, up to Stockbridge via Kings Somborne and back by way of Houghton and Michelmersh. We were surprised to find that ride quite easy.
Elaine had severe arthritis in one of the fingers of her right hand and was due to get the knuckle replaced on 20th Feb. The Saturday before then was a beautiful bright day so we decided to cycle to Beaulieu or just past there to the Master Builders for lunch. Inexplicably, I had decided that I knew the route, had checked on Google maps before we left and there was no need to take Lola (our trusty sat-nav). The ride there was almost pain freer, I only got lost once and took us 2 miles out of our way. The route from Romsey, down Lee Lane, under the M27 and A35, then down thru Eling and Marchwood before entering the New Forest is nice and flat. We had completed 20 miles by the time we got to the pub. Lunch was good too and we happily set off home via Lyndhurst. With such a nice day Lyndhurst was buzzing with people so we left the bikes in the central car park and enjoyed a coffee and cake. The obvious route home (about 10 miles) is along the main road to Cadnam but that looked too dangerous so I decided to use the alternate road via Emery down. The problem with that road is that when it reaches the A31, it is necessary to walk across the busy dual carriageway and lift the bikes over the central barrier. I had a cunning plan, if we turned left in Emery Down and went through Bolderwood, the road goes under the A31 and takes us towards Fritham. That all worked well except that I missed the turn to Fritham and after many miles cycling across the forest we spotted a sign saying Poulner 1 mile. We were almost a Ringwood. Surprisingly I was somewhat unpopular and by the time we had retraced our route and got home we had covered 56 miles. The good news was that we were both in good shape the next day.
Training then stopped for a couple of weeks as Elaine recovered from the surgery on her finger.
Last week we cycled to Salisbury and back for a very nice lunch at the Red Lion. I learn lessons eventually and so we did take Lola with us – despite that I managed to find the hilliest longest possible route home. Instead of being back around 3 as we anticipated we struggled in about 4:30.
So – back to the big ride – unfortunately it looks as though John & Sharman are not going to be able to come all the way with us. The current plan is for them to fly out to Bucharest and possibly ride with us for the first week.
Elaine and I are doing this trip for fun but it seems silly not to try to raise some money for Jane Scarth House – http://www.janescarthhouse.co.uk – while we are doing it. Feel free to follow our trip via the blog anyway, but if you would like to donate just click on the button above and it will take you to the fundraising page on MyDonate.
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