Posted by: brendaintheboro | September 16, 2018

Enjoying the cycling

We have been able to ride 6 days out of 7 this week and that made me really happy. The weather hasn’t been too bad with very little rain or wind but the forecast for next week isnt so good. Apparently the tail end of an Atlantic hurricane will be blowing in by Wednesday , so I will make the most of the days I can.

The early mornings have been chilly, so we have started wearing long pants and long sleeved jerseys to keep warm. The sun isnt rising until after 6.30am but it is making for some beautiful sunrises even though soon after the clouds thicken to a grey sky.

We just rode the usual early morning routes needing lights more to be seen by vehicles, than to see the road ahead.

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I took this one more for the sky colours , the pinks and lavender colours near the bend in the river. Further round, the sun was just cresting the horizon.

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The weather forecast for Saturday wasn’t the best, but we decided to try a longer ride using the e-bikes so by 8.30am we were ready to go. We rode across through Thornaby and Preston Park before heading up through Yarm and on up to Northallerton. I had maps with me and we turned on to the A684. I can say, that I wouldn’t have ridden it without the speed afforded by the e-bike as the traffic was fairly heavy going towards the A1. There was a bit of fine drizzle in the air and so put on rain jackets.

We pulled over in the village of Ainderby Steeple and let a string of cars pass until I could take a photo of the church on the hill. This  village is mention twice in the Doomsday Book so it dates back more than a 1000 years and the church , St Helens dates from the 14th century.

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After that we carried on crossing the river Swale and on to Leeming Bar and then down along the old A1 to the village of Leeming where we have a friend who gave us a lovely welcome and a hot chocolate drink. By now we had cycled 30 miles and after a happy visit, we returned along the same route through Leeming bar and back towards Northallerton.  We could see a string of cars and thought it was a farm vehicle but I could hear a faint popping sound. At first I thought there was something wrong with my bike but there wasn’t. It was a steam vehicle pulling a trailer. Something similar to what we saw in the Netherlands on our summer tour.

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We managed to get past and I stopped at our turn off. I hoped the steam vehicle would come past but they stopped at the bottom so I used the zoom lens to get a photo.

I also got a photo of DH  while he waited for me. The sun had come out by now so we were both happy and remarked that we hadn’t expected that.

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We rode on through Scruton and Great Fencote, a little village. We saw a nice cyclist’s dining room, a bus shelter with a seat, and pulled up to have 2nd breakfast. A lady walking her dog told us there are very few buses along there these days, although they used to have 2 a day. She was interested in our bikes and was surprised where we had come from.

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Along from there , we picked up NCN 72 in Kirkby Fleetham and along to Great Langton which is another ancient settlement going back before the Anglo-Saxons  came to the British Isles. From here we carried on through Streetlam and were back on what we regard as home turf , as we ride it so often.

DH didn’t have the assist on much at all  and came home with 4 out of 5 cells on the battery showing. Me – well I used it more and had 2 cells left so for 71 miles , I was pleased. This is really good. I was watching a programme about electric cars last week and they talked about “range anxiety” when people don’t know if they will have enough electricity to get where they are going. I didn’t take the charger with me and did feel a little anxious  but this was good as it encouraged me to ride without the assist on for more of the time and for now I am quite capable.

So this week I rode 133.1 miles so now I am on 3569.6 miles YTD.

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Posted by: brendaintheboro | September 9, 2018

First signs of Autumn

The weather has taken a definite change in this past week. We have had to dig out the long fingered gloves and cover our ears when out on the early morning rides. Most days have had some rain at some point in the day – even when it hasn’t been forecast!!  The shortening days, also mean we are out as the sun is coming up.

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I didn’t tell you but last weekend while at the Harrogate quilt show, DH went across to Cyclesense and invested in a Koga World Traveller for himself. It wasn’t something we had thought we would do, but the Hadrian’s Wall ride made him think again, As we are now in our later 60’s , the ability to carry our camping gear and get up steep hills, was getting harder. We also discussed the possibility of the UK leaving the EU. It is so uncertain what will actually happen but one thing we are fairly convinced of , prices won’t come down. He had seen me get up the hills pulling my trailer with ease and so decided to go for it now, instead of waiting a few years. So this week , he has used it on our early morning rides  mostly not having the assist turned on. A friend asked what he will call his bike. mmmmm he’s not really a namer of bicycles but we have decided to call him E-ZeeRider. Sorry no photo so far.

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Yesterday, we had a ride across to Cozy Coffee as we didn’t have a lot of time as it was a weekend that we needed to be at church on Saturday and Sunday (Stake Conference). I also wanted to go into Stockton as a quilt shop was having an official opening and I was personally invited last weekend, It is called Panicos and on Teesside those of us who have sewn for years are well aware of the name. The next generation have revived the name and I for one are so pleased to see them succeed. I came away with a couple of purchases to finish a quilt I am working on. I will show it when it is finished.

So yesterday we cycled 39 miles and during the week 81.8 miles making a YTD 3406.52 miles. I am pleased that I will exceed last years total if I keep going this way.

 

 

Posted by: brendaintheboro | September 2, 2018

Great Northern Quilt Show 2018

This week has been a short one in terms of cycling as I reported in on Tuesday. We have been out but it has only been short rides, along the river and through the park type runs.

The weather has been much cooler in the early mornings and as the days shorten , there is a feeling that autumn is in the air. Indeed, the meteorological autumn started yesterday on 1 September.

I had a small piece on display at the quilt show in Harrogate, Yorkshire and so DH and I went down to it . I needed to buy a new rule for cutting out and my trusty cutting board has seen better days so I got both of those at the various traders who come to the show.

 

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These pieces were all made by members of Pieceful Days Quilters. M had decided to issue a challenge and supplied us with sky fabric and we had to make small quilts to depict our houses. We are a very diverse group and this is reflected in our homes. We wanted them all displayed together but for some unknown reason J’s quilt was not the next one along but it is delightful. Mine is 2nd from the left with the bicycle on it.

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I was also fortunate enough to get in a one hour workshop with the delightful Kate Andre who teaches fabric colouring in various ways. Yesterday was working using screen printing and stamping and then colouring using Inktense pencils. I still haven’t finished them but have made a start . Its good to have play time.

These are some of Kate’s samples and she makes these instead of birthday cards.

 

There were some beautiful quilts on display and i did take photos of my favourites but cant show them as I don’t have permission.

So this week I managed to get in another 47.92 miles so YTD is 3324.72 miles

 

Posted by: brendaintheboro | August 28, 2018

A Bank Holiday Tour

Thursday saw us up at the Crack of Doom in order to get the 5.47am train. Yes , you saw the correctly. It was a very early start, cycling to the train station. I have to say that Northern Trains are not the best for transporting bicycles. You cannot book, so its first come , first served and they say only 2 bikes per train , but in practice , they take more. The other bigger problem is, that the space for bikes is just too short. This means that even with the front wheel turned in, there is still not room on the older trains. Consequently, DH stood all the way on the 3 hour journey  steadying the two bikes, as they couldn’t be secured to anything. Luggage had also been removed too. It was a good job Carlisle was the last station on the line, as it gave us time to get off. There was also a delay, as there was a potential suicide threatening to jump off a bridge and they had to wait until the police talked the person down.

So we arrived in Carlisle after 9.15am and I had asked DH where he was . The Premier Inn. What we didn’t know was, there are at least 3 in the Carlisle area and we got to the nearest one to the train staion only to find it wasn’t the correct one. Duh!

The lady in there wrote down directions for us and we got to the BroadGate one well but it is up near  junction 42 of the M6 motorway so traffic was heavy at that time. Fortunately for most of the way , there is a cycle track.

We went up to meet our friends who are cycling the Lands End to John O’Groats route with their 2 little girls on trailer bikes. I had to put on my yellow cape and helmet cover as it began to rain heavily after we had breakfasted.

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The girls loved it and asked me to play being a bride , so they could hold the cape like a train of a dress and had me walking around the carpark while everything was readied for them to leave.  As you can see , I had great fun. Looking closely at the photo. it looks as though one of them has 2 heads – she hasn’t but moves so fast.

 

Carlisle to Haltwhistle 

We left at the same time as the Jones family  but we didn’t ride back down into Carlisle, as we could go up over the M6 and then head down to Wetherall and join the NCN72 route there.P1020265

The  map was a bit obscured for the way we needed by the Carlisle insert but we found it easily. The way isn’t too  bad along here, with rolling countryside but it was becoming increasingly wet. When we came to Warwick Bridge, I was fortunate as a car stopped to let me out onto the main road. It was then I realised it had Dutch registration plates, so their natural instinct is to give way to cyclists. Thank you to the Netherlands.

From here, the route twists and turns its way up through  the busy little market town of Brampton and along to Lanercost Priory. It was here I called for a halt as the rain was heavier and it was now time to eat again. There is a very nice café here so I asked if I could plug the battery in – no problem  – so we ate nice paninis and had hot chocolate to warm up. There were lots of walkers who are walking Hadrian’s wall and I spoke to a couple of American ladies who were enjoying themselves despite the weather.

Once through Lanercost the climb begins – gently at first and then up to Banks where the steepness increases. I was using Bluebell and increased from Eco mode to Tour  mode to help with the climb. I stopped a little after Banks for DH to catch me up and then it was off again .

 

Even though the weather wasn’t too good, the rain at least abated a bit  and the views are beautiful even in the wet.

 

We rode on and looked at one of the milecastles that were dotted all along the wall. Its amazing they are still standing even after 2000 years.

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The climb continues to Birdoswald but we didn’t stop at the museum and I remember a previous occasion when I walked up that hill. Now I swooped down, chased by DH but with the e-bike assistance I was up the other side with no difficulty.

Part of the path near Gilsland has been resurfaced which is really nice but when you get to Greenhead, the road in the village , I would describe as “dire”. It’s possibly an unadopted road  and not well maintained. The path then goes off road and I had a bit of difficulty here. I think it was because I got the gears wrong and the surface wasn’t good but I ended up walking a short stretch ably assisted by DH pushing the rig for me. Once up at Walltown Craggs, it was an easy run down into the town of Haltwhistle , calling into the Co-op for some supplies. I saw Co-op and stopped only to find it was the funeral place Heehee. DH might have needed it ,he says, if he had had a heart attack on the climbs.

We cycled down to the Camping and Caravanning Club site to the south of the town near Park village and were well received. I asked if there was any chance of a hook-up for my battery and was greeted with a very enthusiastic yes.  One of the assistant managers even came to ask about the e-bike and how it all worked. He is thinking of retiring at the end of the season and may invest in one. We were really fortunate that the sun had come out for pitching the tent and stayed dry in the evening.

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This was early morning as the sun rose. We used a home made tarp to cover both bicycles.

Haltwhistle to Bellingham

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During the night, I had awful leg cramps not once but three times. I hadn’t packed any salt, my usual remedy and so wolfed down some crisps. They helped a bit but I knew I had to get some salt in case it happened again. I was going to go to the Co-op again but didn’t really want to carry a whole tub. I spotted a butchers and asked if they had any. The assistant was only to happy to put a small amount in a plastic vacuum pack  and a plastic bag for later use – no charge either. Thank you to W M H Fresh Farm Meats for your kindness.

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We then set off eastwards along the South Tyne valley following route 73  through Melkridge and along to Bardon Mill. We saw some scarecrows dotted about  through the village in  a celebration for the Bank holiday weekend.

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After this there came the big climb. We have been to Vindolanda , a big Roman fort on a previous trip so opted to use a small route up to near the highest point on Hadrian’s cycleway. First was the climb up to Westend Town and this scarecrow was on the corner.

P1020193 Here is DH resting before he starts to climb up again.

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Fortunately there is  then a flatter bit following the contour before climbing again. There were lovely views. I stopped and waited at the road junction which had this wind blown tree.

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It was cool and damp but there  was a great descent of about 5 miles into Newrough where we encountered a German couple on e-bikes. They were headed for Dumfries in Scotland but would find accommodation on the way, They said that they had been so pleased by the friendliness of the people they had come across on their journey and were so pleased when I spoke German to them.

We left them as they headed west and we road along towards Fourstones and up to the Chesters Roman Fort. I did go into this museum as its not one I have been into previously. There was a really good free tour and the guide said that at the time the Romans invaded with 40,000 troops, Britain had about 4 million inhabitants. So it was a huge force with such revolutionary technology that has changed our country .

There is a museum displaying finds that the Victorians have preserved and I talked to a chap who was running a “dig” for children. He said it kept children entertained while the parents had a chance to have time to look around themselves.

 

After this visit, we headed to Chollerford and then started a gentler climb on the B6320 . There was a road sign saying the road was closed 7 miles head. We knew the village of Wark was 7 miles ahead but didn’t know if the road was closed before or after this. We decided to just ride up and see.

Well we were in luck and although there was a chap sat in a car at the road block , we just rode through and then past the workforce who were just working on one side of the road. This meant we had the road to ourselves. It did begin to rain a bit  so we stopped and donned the rainwear.

We rode up to the campsite just outside Bellingham ( pronounced Bellingjum locally)  and again got a pitch  with a hook-up – all without booking because we arrived by bicycle. We got a choice of pitch too . It was interesting  to see this fungus in this old tree stump. I wonder if it is a bracket fungus?

 

The sun came out later and we rode the mile down into the village to buy some cake. yumyum. There is a lovely kitchen and sitting area at this site. When the weather is clear at night , it’s in  a dark sky park so you can see the stars. We weren’t so lucky but the sky must have cleared later in the early hours as it got quite cold for an August night.

Bellingham to Jarrow

 

Saturday morning saw us getting up and making breakfast in the kitchen while waiting for the tent to dry out in the early sunshine.

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Then we left the site about 9.00am and then  headed back down the B6320 back to Wark. In 2016, I rode across route 10 to Bellingham with my folder and had a real slog on the bit before the town. By coming down to Wark, that bad off road bit could be avoided. There was a stiff climb up to Birtley above the North Tyne.

 

I needed to use the turbo mode on a couple of occasions but the views were stunning in the sunshine.   We had to cross the A68  and there is a supposed crossing point but it is a bit of a joke – we couldn’t use it with full kit on the bikes – as it was choked with vegetation.  We did cross fairly easily though on the road and then we were on very minor/farm roads across to the church at Throckrington.

Then its down towards Little Bavington and Ryal before getting to Matfen. Here I knew there was a village shop / café. We stopped and again I asked if I could recharge the battery. The owner thought I wanted to bring the bike in. I explained that the battery is easily detachable and I could just plug it in. He agreed and  we sat and had a sandwich and the tiffin – a sort of chocolate biscuity thing was fabulous.

While we ate, the battery recharged to 4 cells and we were now on much gentler country.  We continued east to Stamfordham before using a small road  that took us to a much safer road crossing of the A69T that I used in 2016. You live and learn.

In Wylam, I spotted the sign for George Stephensons cottage and I knew the Wylam Wagonway ( cycletrack) was there. Again we were back on NCN72 and it was a lovely ride down into Newcastle where we crossed the Millenium bridge to Gateshead on the south side of the river. NCN14 then undulated down to Jarrow where we stayed with my brother and my SIL for 2 nights. This gave me the opportunity to go to church in South Shields and meet up with friends from so many years ago who I rarely see these days. I was glad we had made this decision as Sunday was the wettest day of the whole weekend.

Jarrow to the Boro 

We set off from Jarrow at 7.45am and road through South Shields up past Temple Park on well made cycle paths . Then we rejoined King George road up to Cleadon village where we took a road we have never ridden before into Whitburn , where we rejoined our usual route. We believe this saved us about 8 miles , rather than riding the river and coast to the same point.

We got home at 2.30pm having called in at a supermarket  so I was really pleased with how Bluebell had performed.

Ridden this week was 208.3 miles and YTD 3276.8 miles

Posted by: brendaintheboro | August 19, 2018

More sewing and cycling

The weather this week has been much more normal for the north east of England. That is to say we are having wind and rain on and off. I was thinking back to my teenage years which was spent patrolling the beaches as a volunteer lifeguard. Early September would see the weather change to bright blue skies but a fierce wind from the north. It would whip the sand onto out legs causing them to sting while we continued our training for the national championships which were held at the end of September or beginning of October complete with a sea swim – no wet suits in those days.  Sorry. Nostalgia creeping in.

So with dodging the weather I only managed 66.5 miles over most of the days not really going anywhere exciting, just the usual river riding. We did try for a little further yesterday but came home after 23 miles  as both of us were nearly blown into traffic by blustery side winds.

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Last weekend, I found out that a friend was very unwell. She had cancer a decade ago but now has a brain problem . I felt impressed that I needed to give her a fabric hug. So in my other free time, when I wasn’t working , I decided to make an easy quilt. Another internet friend  had sent me instructions for an easy tessellating quilt block. I pulled fabrics from my stash and made 10 inch blocks, stitched them together and added a border. One of the things I did on yesterday’s cycle ride, was to buy some fabric to make the binding.

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The eagle -eyed  among you will realise that some of this fabric is more of what I made in last week’s quilt.

I got the idea for the binding from Amy – a Craftsy class tutor – and used a curly stitch to hold it in place. it seemed simpler than a blanket stitch and more secure. This is to be used and  not given pride of place.

 

My friends who write FamilyBycycle, are at present cycling the end to end  LEJOG with their two little ones. They are currently in Cheshire after setting off from Land’s End last weekend. The girls ate on tagalongs  so if you see them, please be patient and give them room.

So YTD 3068.5 miles

Posted by: brendaintheboro | August 12, 2018

Some cycling , some sewing

It was a fairly quiet week for me workwise, so I made the most of the time. On Monday, we headed across to Redcar and Saltburn as we haven’t been that way for a while. We called in to see Pip as I wanted him to see Bluebell. Pip has an e-bike that he has had for 8 years but he was telling me  that it is on its 3rd motor and it’s not one he would recommend. Maybe in 8 years they have improved. It is a German manufacturer not the Dutch one I have.

We then rode along to Saltburn and I called into Ripping Yarns, a very nice woolshop where I like to buy the sock yarns I use. I have a little stockpile but didn’t buy anymore .

We also called in to see some friends and I took this photo of her beautiful garden.

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We rode up on to higher ground – it is so much easier for me on Bluebell.

 

It was a lovely day but during this week, the hot summer weather has given way to much more normal weather for this part of the UK, with cooler temperatures and more rain. Mind you, there have been some more torrential downpours so the reservoirs should be filling up a bit. The grass is certainly greening up again and DH has had to cut the hedge too.

When we got home DS2, said could I make a quilt for his friends whose baby was being christened today. Nothing like a deadline to get me going. So on Monday evening , we chose the fabrics from my stash and I got going. Very simple but looks nice.

We had the usual morning rides and then yesterday  we had a ride over to Cozy Coffee and indulged in some of Rosie’s delicious home made cakes. We chose ginger and lemon cake. I should have taken a photo but didn’t take any at all. Sorry.

I use a bit surprised when DH asked if I wanted to return more or less the same we way had come but then go back via Billingham. We thought we might have gone across to Saltholme but the skies looked threatening so we didn’t but did ride along the river . The tide was coming in but the wind was blowing hard downstream. We had ridden all the was to Rosie’s into a headwind and it helped us back.

Here is the quilt that was handed over today. I did get it finished.

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Here is a close up of the simple quilting.

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I used the left over blocks and some strips to make up the backing.

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Last weeks ride miles 106.5 which brings my YTD total 3002miles. That makes me happy.

Posted by: brendaintheboro | August 5, 2018

Solo Mini Cycle tour

The way my week was panning out, I decided I would take Bluebell off for a short cycle camping trip. So I packed my trailer with everything but the kitchen sink – I wasn’t intending to go lightweight as I wanted to see how well it would pull and get me up the hills on a known route.

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So on Wednesday morning  , I set off to ride to Riccall, just short of 75 miles south of here. The morning was bright and sunny but with a brisk wind blowing from the south. I followed the usual route across through Yarm and up the bank to turn off at Kirklevington along Forrest lane. By now I had been out of the eco mode and into the tour mode for a couple of short blasts and was watching the battery levels.  On previous rides across to Northallerton I got there on using one cell of charge but on this day after about 15 miles I had used one cell. I had phoned the village shop / café in Helperby  and knew that the whole village had no electricity all day due to works on the overhead power cables. So when I got to Northallerton, I asked at a well known coffee chain, if I could plug in my battery. I enjoyed a hot chocolate and a cheese toastie while the electricity flowed in. While waiting , another couple in cycling gear came in. It turns out that they had driven over from Scarborough to go for a ride with Swaledale Outdoor club. I could see my battery was full again and so off I went. By now it was about 9.45am.

Then it was along the A168 to Topcliffe and what a pleasure it was to be able to up the assist just a little and climb the bank without straining every muscle. A brief stop to have a good drink and I was off away up through Cundall, Thornton Bridge and down through Helperby where every business seemed to be closed. No electricity, no work but I did see a man house painting.

I called at my friends in Linton on Ouse before carrying on through Newton on Ouse and the grounds of Benningbrough Hall. There are a couple of bridges over the railway lines and I have usually found these climbs tiring but not on this day. So down along to York and a very kind driver of a city maintenance van, stopped the traffic so I could get Bluebell plus trailer off Lendel bridge and off along the river. I stopped in our usual place just outside Rowntree park and watched the boats go by while I ate lunch.

I rode down the Planet track and rewarded myself with an ice lolly at the post office in Riccall before heading off to South Newlands Farm for camping. I was greeted warmly by Peggy and Rod who , as I was solo expected me to have a room, but I said I prefer to camp. I got my tent set up with a “garage” for Bluebell that I made from an old tarp. DS1 had sorted me with a proper piece of equipment so I can use the hookup to charge my battery. I did have one and a bit cells left so could have made it all the way.  74.4 miles

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See, I even had my table and chair . I didn’t take the inner tent as it has been so warm so it was more like sleeping under a tarp.

Thursday  2nd August 2018.  The tour of the power stations. Heehee this wasn’t intended. I left the tent on site and  set off following the NCN 1 route down through Selby and I knew I should be along the canal but I was following the signage and it just wasn’t there. I did see a cycle/walking path so followed that and eventually got to the outskirts of town and was then on the A1041 but it just stopped. So I took off on a side road and then as I rode over a bridge, I knew where I was . This was where the canal path would have brought me to, so I about turned and took the path across the old Burn airfield. I have to say it is so sad to see just how much it has deteriorated over the years. Some parts where so bad that I got off to walk. If I was on a fat bike it would have been safer as the gravel was so deep in places .

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It was here that I spotted the first of the power stations.

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Then it was down through Carlton and on to Snaith. This is a fascinating little town which goes back to before 1066 and the invasion by the Normans. It was interesting to see that near St Lawrence church there were the penny lock ups.

 

Apparently there must much drunkenness in the late 19th century and so these cells were used to allow drunks to sober up but then they had to pay a penny to be let out.

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From Snaith , I rode back up to the village of Carlton and then across near Drax and the second power station.

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I never realised there was a village there too. I then headed across to Newland village and when looking at the map I should have had my glasses on. I though there was a small stream with a bridge so that I could get across but that wasn’t so. I ended up back in Carlton so my visit to Goole was curtailed. I didn’t want to ride the main road as there  wasn’t a cycle way and there were lots of lorries.

So I rode along to Temple Hirst and on across the A19 to West Haddlesey where I spotted under a tree and ate my lunch. Then I set off for Gatesforth and a chap on a racing cycle called out that I should catch him with my battery power. I didn’t even try . I was out to enjoy my day, not go chasing. As I got further north, I decided instead of going to Selby, I would head for Thorpe Willowby but did end up on the A63 but it wasn’t too bad for the short distance needed. Then it was up to Cawood to cross the river and then along to Kellfield and back into Riccall. I could see all three power stations as I climbed up to Thorpe Willowby but I couldn’t get them all in one photo. Silly me, I never thought to use the panoramic photo part on the camera.

In Riccall , I stopped at the  Dairyman Café and enjoyed some lemonade and tiffin just after 2.00pm. He was closing up after me , so I was glad I got in there. Back at the site , I enjoyed sitting in the shade of the hedge and getting on with my knitting. 47.7 miles.

Looking them up , I think the power stations would have been Drax, Ferrybridge and Eggborough but I could be wrong.

Friday 3rd August 2018

I woke up just after 5.00am styed reading until 5.30am when I decided to get up and get packed up. The sky was clear and it was pleasant as I sat having cheese toastie for breakfast. I retraced my way and was surprised to get across both the A19 up through Naburn.

 

 

Again I got cross  Lendel bridge in York with ease. I sat on the outskirts of York , having 2nd breakfast .

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A chap called Paul came along. He was interested to see my rig and we had a chat . I was ready to leave and so he rode along with me , chatting as we went as he is interested in getting an e-assist bike. I was able to recommend Cyclesense  as a source of information and a place to purchase.

A little later, I cam across a young chap who was putting his chain back on. I went long the A19 as I had been shown a few months back when the chap needed to be airlifted out. So I came across the lad again and he was riding to Benningbrough . I told him I was going there too , so we chatted as we went along. He was new to the area and was out doing a bit of exploring. If Imran , reads this I would love the photo he took of me.

After Linton on Ouse, there were a few spots of rain but as I crossed the river at Aldwark, it came down in torrents. I got soaked and it wasn’t cold but I knew if I stopped I would be chilled through. I followed the route through Great Ouseburn and the Dunsforths before getting into Boroughbridge. I knew my groundsheet wouldn’t be adequate in the rain , so I asked permission to dumpster dive and got a large sheet of plastic  that I could use. Arriving at the campsite, I was a bit early at 12.45am but there were already campervans and caravans waiting for the 1.00pm opening. They opened early and so I managed to get pitched and all my stuff inside before a massive thunder storm. I was able to strip off all my wet clothes and get warmed through making myself a hot drink and cheese toastie.

I couldn’t get a hookup and so the campsite put my battery on charge in the garage so I was glad to have a full battery once again.

33.9miles.

Saturday 4th August  2018

I got up early, but not as early as DH. He decided to ride out to meet me and left home at 4.15am. We met up about 7.30 am  just outside Boroughridge and we cycled home together, me getting up the hills first. heehee. Home by 12.30pm  45.3 miles.

I can really say that this should keep me cycle camping for a good while yet.

total mileage for the week was 226.7 miles and YTD 2895.5 miles.

 

 

 

 

 

Posted by: brendaintheboro | July 29, 2018

Unpredictable Weather

The week started out hot and continued to get hotter and hotter. We enjoyed the early morning rides usually along the river or around the nearby park where I was able to spot the cygnets. One swan has 2 remaining and the other has a single cygnet. The fall out rate has really been a shame as this means one pair of swans has lost at least 6 babies. Such a shame.

 

The singleton is growing well and both its parents were close by. Initially , as it was snuggled down, I hoped it was 2 but as I approached and it became aware, i could see it was just the one.

I am also preparing for a solo camping trip next week and DH suggested I get my stuff together and  we could see how far I could manage in hillier country. Then on Friday night this happened.

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This wasn’t on my road, but I could see the water thundering along our road and it contributed to the flooding that occurred at the bottom of the road. I remember seeing it like this about 40 years ago but not since. The thunder and lightening were amazing and went on for about an hour and a half and the rain pelted down.

Saturday dawned and although it was dry, it was much cooler and we dithered about as I got the trailer packed. By the time we left the house the wind was really blowing hard. The weather forecast said gusting at 40 mph and we decided that although I would pull the trailer, we wouldn’t go so far. Unfortunately, as we passed over Newport bridge, we both were nearly blown off as the gusts were so bad.

So, it wasn’t such a good mileage for the week but 67 miles is better than nothing.

YTD 2678.8 miles

Posted by: brendaintheboro | July 22, 2018

Picton Show

We have been getting out a bot most early mornings but it is become evident that the daylight hours are shortening. Still, I have been able to get out most mornings during the week cycling between 6.5 miles and 12 miles  when I had more time. Unfortunately, or fortunately if you look at it a different way, I have been extremely busy caring for peoples feet – a job I love.

The weather has been good with only the odd light shower but none yesterday. My friend Farmer Joan , had asked me if I could put something into the handicraft section of the Picton Agricultural show to make sure there was a good assortment of entries. I passed on my quilt before we left for holiday, as I didn’t think I would be able to get it over there. Well my entry ” Never Again” won 1st prize. Its the quilt based on the convict quilt   and its a play on words. Never again will I make such a fussy quilt with tiny little pieces and I suppose those ladies who were sent to Australia as convicts probably thought never again would they commit crimes.

 

The poppy quilt was made by another  friend.

I was riding Bluebell, and so we could take hillier roads than we have been doing for a while. We left the show field and road along to the bridge over the A19 that leads to Crathorne.  A couple od lads on road bikes passed us and DH said he thought I would put it into turbo mode to give chase. Not me , steady away lass.

We turned and rode along through Hutton Rudby, whose 17% hill , I have never managed to get up for a good few years. This time in a low gear and battery on Eco, sailed up despite the poor road surface. We then road along the track road to Seamer and I stopped to photograph the Cleveland Hills.

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From Seamer, it was on towards Hilton but we turned and rode along to Maltby before going on through Hemlington and home. DH left me to go on ahead saying “You will soon catch me up”. He was right, I did on the next hill.

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This week 78.5 miles and YTD 2611.8 miles.

Posted by: brendaintheboro | July 15, 2018

Meet Bluebell

As some of you will know , I really struggled in some of the headwinds on our last long tour. DH said to me , he thought I should consider getting an e-bike. In the Netherlands and Germany, they are an everyday site. I have always said , not until I am seventy.

When away we met a Dutch couple and the wife had an e-bike so I could talk to them and discuss what it is like really touring. I also looked in a few cycle shops in the Netherlands, so I could get some ideas.

When we got home , I messaged a lady I now who has an e-bike and asked where she got hers and she recommended going to talk to the chap in a local shop. He was very helpful and I got further ideas but realised that the brands he sold while good were not quite the same thing as a touring bicycle.

I was in a bit of a dilemma as I do like Koga but last time I looked they had carbon forks. Not ideal in my opinion but I phoned Cyclesense   to talk to Dave in this family business. It was funny really because he said he had been going to ring me but thought it was cheeky.

So I said I needed advice on an e-bike and he told me that he had just had a delivery and one of them was a Koga World Tourer in my size and an e-bike. I told him of my reservations but he said the new model doesn’t have the carbon forks. So we chatted a bit more until I asked the question “What colour is it? ” Blue . Well that was it. It was meant to be.

In my childhood , I always had blue bikes  from my very first trike made up from bits but painted blue. So now in my second childhood, I have a blue bike.

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I got Dave to change the saddle as I do like the one I purchased a couple of months ago and brought he home.

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Even the battery has been colour co-ordinated.

During the week, being back to work, I was only able to manage short rides of 10-15 miles and so yesterday , we decided to do a long ride.

So we set off to Northallerton, 23 miles and then decided we would ride back through Darlington and up to Cozy Coffee near Coatham Munderville. I had no idea of the distance but felt good. For the first time ever, I have seen DH with a sweaty face as he rode up the hills behind me. On the flat , mostly I turned off the assist  and just rode  and was doing well. In total by the time we returned home, we had ridden 66 miles and I still had 3 bars of battery charge left. I was so delighted I phoned Dave to tell him.

I have to say that I used the gears in the same way as I usually do and only had it in eco mode except for once turning it up higher accidently when I was approaching a roundabout.

In the park the cygnets seem to have diminished on number and I was only able to take a photo of this one. I do hope the others are just hiding in the rushes.

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weekly total 123.4 miles YTD 2533.3

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