Wednesday, 18 December 2013

Looking in two directions at once.....

That's what I'm doing right now.... Looking in two directions at once.
I'm looking backwards over this past year at the same time as looking forward to 2014.....

For various reasons this past year has not been a good one...... Apart from the success of the 'Ten Countries in Ten Days' (10in10) ride I feel that I have achieved very little.. 
Plans made for various rides fell by the wayside due to reasons beyond my control.....my cycling mileage has fallen to half of what I achieved last year and even on this blog I have written fewer posts than any year since I started  the 'PurpleTraveller'.
My Mojo seems to have gone missing to some extent.......

I can put some of this down to the fact that I lost a number of people who had figured strongly in my life over many years..... The passing of these friends and most recently a family member seemed to hit me harder than I could have imagined and I found that my heart wasn't up to doing much at all.........
Even during the year that I was undergoing cancer treatment I seemed to achieve more than I have over this past year......

Over the years though I have found that setbacks seem to spur me on given a reasonable recovery period, so with that in mind lets look forward to 2014........

First up......
Now that I have the MTB one little challenge that I intend completing is the South Downs Double.. The South Downs Way was one of the first National Trails that I did years ago as a backpacking trip and since that first trip I have backpacked the route on three separate occasions.   
The route runs from Winchester in the west to Eastbourne in the east and is a wonderful offroad route 160kms in length.

A few riders attempt the 320kms return route in 24hrs........ but not me..! 
I plan on doing the return route the easy way by taking my time over the trip so that I can take photos and just enjoy the route more.... 

I will be carrying lightweight camping gear on the bike in MTB trekking style rather than using panniers etc as I do when road touring and I will probably give myself five or six days to complete the 320kms.......... so my ride could be called the South Downs EASY Double.....

Next up...
I will finally get around to doing the Lon Las Cymru route across Wales from Holyhead in the north to Chepstow in the south..... 
This will be completed as a traditional touring ride but there will be one big difference with the way I plan on doing it..........!!

My plan is to cycle from home here in Bournemouth to Chepstow and then to loosely  follow the English /Welsh border North before turning West to continue to the start at Holyhead......
After completing the Lon Las Cymru back to Chepstow I will then just carry on back to Bournemouth. 
In effect then just one huge loop of approx 1,000kms. 

As well as these two trips I also plan on a short cyclepacking trip with friends along the Tarka Trail in Devon as well as completing the West Country Coast to Coast route.....

For now I have been getting out along the coast on the MTB and I also plan on getting some riding in over Christmas and the New Year holidays and also spending time with the family.....

I wish you all Seasons Greetings and a really good New Year.......

Getting out along the coast....

Friday, 22 November 2013

It's Arrived....

Wednesday's delivery
 It arrived early on Wednesday morning.....very early...so early in fact that the courier actually got me out of bed......
The delivery consisted of one large box containing my new mountain bike..... quite a speedy delivery, as I only ordered the bike on Monday....
The contents of the box.....
I told Anne that it was an early Christmas present from me...to me!!
Inside the box the bike was very well  protected with sealed foam wrapping and cable ties.....
Within twenty five minutes I had the bike fully assembled and all set up.......
All prepared and ready to go...
Getting a new bike of any kind is always a fun experience......
Every time I get another  bike I always say 'that will be the last bike that I will buy'......I mean, lets face it, at almost sixty six years of age how much time do I have to ride four bikes...? 
So I will say it again... That will be the last bike that I will buy..!!
'Head to the woods' on the seat tube...
As you can see in the picture above......On the seat tube there is the legend 'head to the woods'.....
So that is exactly what I did.....!!

Monday, 18 November 2013

I just had to.....

GENESIS Core 100
I just had to..... buy a mountain bike that is....!!  
Following my recent ride with my daughter and her husband and the two boys it seemed silly not to... I mean I didn't want to have to keep borrowing my daughters Felt MTB everytime I go for a ride with them...having my own MTB seemed to be the way to go.

I didn't want anything too expensive, as a MTB will be just an add on to my real love of road riding but I did want something that seemed good and capable and I wanted good value as well....
I asked for some suggestions on twitter and Gary @gazwagon  came back with a recommendation for Genesis bikes.....

Luckily at this time of year there are a lot of good bike bargains to be had on existing models as the manufacturers introduce their new range of bikes....

I managed to get a Genesis Core 100 with a very nice 40% discount..... the only drawback is the colour...bright orange..!!  
Mind you my youngest grandson will approve of it as it is the same colour as his bike....

Monday, 11 November 2013

Changes........

Wicker and Wood Bike....
This time of year a lot of people seem to change their bike... buying the latest models that the bike manufacturers are promoting....

I have always thought that the start of the winter is not exactly a good time to be buying a new bike unless of course you are buying a new winter bike.... 
If I am going to change a bike the springtime seems a much better time to be spending my hard earned cash on something all shiny and new...

Having said that...since my recent ride with my daughter and her family I have found myself checking out MTBs online... I'm not saying that I will actually buy one....just looking you understand....

If you are thinking about a change, forget  steel...carbon...titanium...aluminium..or even bamboo... why not go for wicker and wood.....that is what the bike in the picture above is made from.
I saw it outside of a shop in town. 

It probably won't give you the fastest or most comfortable of rides, but hey...you will be different and you certainly won't be one of the sheep following everyone else.......

Talking about changes....there are going to be some quite major ones for me over the next 18 months or so. 

First of all, after fifteen years here at 'Purple Towers' it's seems pretty likely that a move to a different location is a distinct possibility. 
I can't say when exactly, but I would expect to re-locate sometime within that 18 month time frame. 

Anne and I are already spending more time in Devon so that seems to be a favourite area for us to move to... 
More information on that as our plans develop and unfold.....

I also plan on starting a different type of adventure than some of those that I have done in recent years....This one will be with Anne...
I can't say more that that at present but I will share more on this over the coming months. 

I still intend to continue with my big annual cycling adventures and I have a number of plans for next years ride in the mix.... I just need to work out the logistics of each route before making the final decision... As soon as that decision is made I will tell you about it here......




Friday, 1 November 2013

Half Term Ride.....

As it has been my grandson's half term holidays this past week,  my daughter and her husband invited me to join them all on a day out at the Moors Valley Country Park and Forest on Wednesday......


My Daughter and her Family.....
 Moors valley is not too far from where they live so they often pop over there with their bikes and make a day of it.... 
The weather forecast was for a nice day with only a small chance of rain.. 
I must admit that I had doubts over the accuracy of the forecast, as the moment I got into my car to drive over to their house near Wimborne it started to rain, but this cleared up and by the time we were all ready to set off from their house it had all the promise of a really nice day.....
My Grandsons and their bikes...
Being a road obsessed cyclist I don't own a MTB, but I was able to borrow one from the stable of bikes my daughter and her husband have....
We had a good ride along the gravel track forest road and also on the single track that winds it's way through the Pine forest with technical bends and tight turns...nothing too difficult... but at a moderate grade it is great for the kids...as well as sixty six year old roadies..!!
Bikes taking a lunch break...
We enjoyed a really nice lunch at the picnic area near the car park, but it wasn't long before the boys wanted to get back on the bikes and ride some more.... soon we were on the single track again....
On the way back home we stopped off to take a look at the steam railway......
One of the Moors Valley Steam Locomotives....
 Moors valley has an authentic narrow gauge railway which is obviously very popular with the kids...it currently has 17 steam locos and 2 diesel versions...apparently most of these were actually built at the Moors Valley railway workshops......
A view of the station area...
All too soon our day out on the bikes was over....
The weather had remained fine and dry for us and I really enjoyed the MTB riding as it made a nice change from my road bikes.....
Looking back on it I would list it as another of those 'special days'.........

Wednesday, 16 October 2013

Some Days are Special..

Some days are special....yesterday was one of those days.....

Just before the weekend I had a message from Jon Joynes (one of the 10in10 riders) asking me if I would like to pop over to Somerset one day this week for a cycle ride around the area near his home town of Yeovil.
A quick glance at the weather forecast showed me that the only day worth considering looked to be the Tuesday..yesterday... all the other days of the week had predictions of precipitation over the 40% chance...
As one of my many motto's goes along the line of 'why cycle in the wet if you can ride in the dry?' our choice of day for our ride was made...as it was Jon had the whole week free of work so was as flexible as I was in choosing the driest day...and didn't we make the right choice..!!


Blue sky and strong shadows...a stunning day for a Somerset ride.
I got up yesterday morning and was greeted by bright sunshine so all bode well for a good day's riding... First though I had to drive over to Somerset..one of the four counties that is adjacent to Dorset the others being Hampshire Devon and Wiltshire. 

As I set off from home the weather was gorgeous however the moment I turned off the coast road to head inland I found myself engulfed in fog...and that was the way it stayed all the way to Yeovil.
As I arrived at Yeovil the sun seemed to break through and all looked good again.
A pretty Somerset scene on our ride..
At Jon's house I got myself sorted out..removed my bike from the back of my personal Tonka toy (4x4) and we set off...
I have cycled through parts of Somerset in the past but not much in this particular area so it was nice to have a cycling buddy show me one of his regular routes....

As we rode along we both remarked on what a truly stunning day it was... It was one of those Autumnal days that are really special where everything seems to have come together to create a  perfect day.....
Nice weather and not much traffic...perfect!
We headed north of Yeovil on a truly lovely cycling loop...there was not a great deal of traffic even on the few sections of main road that we rode on ...most of the route though seemed to use the country lanes that Somerset has an abundance of making for a very nice relaxed ride..

One of the villages that we went through was Kingsbury Episcopi...over twenty years ago some friends of mine lived in Church cottage there and cycling through the village brought back lots of happy memories of my visits and time spent there all those years ago.....
Jon's Dad with the Mercian...A great winter project..
Jon had organised our coffee and cake stop at his parents house...
It was really nice to meet Jon's parents who had organised both chocolate cake and  jam doughnuts..my two favourites....
We all sat outside chatting and enjoying the warm autumn sunshine and talking about everything under the sun including caravans..classic cars and of course bikes.

Jon's Dad showed me an old Mercian bike that he has.... it would make a first class winter restoration project... 
Although it has surface rust to the frame the bike looks solid and intact and it would be wonderful to see it fully restored... 

The problem is though, that his Dad has a number of other objects of  desire that are good restoration projects.  Like most restorers it is hard deciding which project to start on next... Caravan...Car..Bike..??
Surface rust only on the Mercian
All too soon it was time to head off and continue with our bike ride.....

As we headed back towards Yeovil we were able to reflect on what a perfect day's ride we had enjoyed...how lucky we had been with the weather....how enjoyable the route had been....how good it was to get out on the bikes and ride with a friend....

Before I knew it, the ride was over and I was loading the bike into the vehicle and then heading back home to Dorset....

One last view of the old Mercian
Today when I woke up I was greeted by rain lashing down and strong winds and it looks as if those forecast predictions of rain were absolutely spot on....

As I said at the beginning of this blog post...
Some days are special.....yesterday was one of those days....

Friday, 11 October 2013

Berghaus - Forty Marathons in Forty Days...

THE ULTIMATE TRAIL INFOGRAPHIC..


I've always been up for a bit of a challenge as regular visitors to this blog will be well aware, but here is one that I personally won't be attempting....

1000 miles is an impressive distance to run by any stretch of the imagination...
To do it in 40 days across the high route of the Great Himalaya Trail is an incredible achievement...  but that is exactly what Berghaus athlete Phillipe Gatta  is attempting to do, setting the fastest known time for the route.

Here are some of the stats from Phillipe's expedition in an Infographic to help give it a sense of scale........

Philippe Gatta The ultimate trail, great himalaya trail infographic

Monday, 7 October 2013

Il Lombardia....'The race of the falling leaves'.

Fallen leaves on one of my own cycling routes...
Yesterday was the Il Lombardia...which is one of my favourite one day classic races...In fact the race and everything connected with it was the inspiration for the 10 in 10 ride that I did way back in June this year.....
The Lombardia is known as the 'Race of the Falling Leaves' due to the time of year that it is held....

The top four places in this years race were:-
 1st Joaquin RODRIGUEZ  (Esp)     Team.. KAT
 2nd Alejandro VALVERDE (Esp)    Team..MOV
 3rd  Rafal MAJKA  (Pol)                  Team..TST
 4th Dan MARTIN  (Irl)                    Team..GRS

While trawling the net sometime ago I found a very interesting series on 'Roads to Ride' over at 'The Inner Ring'  blog website.....
It is a series about riding the famous roads/hills in cycling.....it looks at the routes....history..including race history, as well as what it feels like to ride. It also looks at travel and access to the road/climb and finishes with a brief summary....

Well worth checking out in my opinion...

The first in the series was Alpe d'Huez and the second was The Ghisallo the signature ride of the Il Lombardia...
 If you've not seen it go and take a look by clicking on this BUTTON 

At the end of the piece on the Ghisallo there is a list of links to the other iconic 'Roads to Ride' in the series..
The Inner Ring really is a blog worth following.....



Thursday, 26 September 2013

Riding into Autumn.....

For me...this time of the year is one of the best for getting out on the bike for a ride.
Most of the visitors to the area have now gone home and the roads have become a lot quieter and more bike friendly. It's also a lot cooler now making the temperature better suited for cycling...

I started the week with a 38 mile spin on Monday morning on my own followed by an afternoon of bike cleaning... I get a lot of pleasure in making sure that my bikes are always cleaned and prepared before every ride and if done regularly it never needs to be a major operation....
The Felt cleaned and prepped ready for Tuesdays ride.
 I had made arrangements to meet up with Si Chapman and Jon Joynes on Tuesday for an afternoon spin... It had been a good few weeks since I had ridden with either of these guys. It was a couple of weeks after the end of the 10in10 ride that I last rode out with Si and it was in Italy during the 10in10 itself that Jon and I had been riding together.....
The Bikes taking a coffee break...
 I was really looking forward to meeting up with these fellas..... It's always great to meet up with mates for a ride and at this time of year I find the rides more enjoyable than ever....on top of that Si lives in a village in North Dorset surrounded by some great cycling country, although for this ride we had all agreed it was going to be a nice steady and flattish ride.....
Si and Jon taking a coffee break....
 Si had a bit of a cold and as none of us has been doing big distance rides lately an easier ride with a coffee and cake stop seemed appropriate... Anyway as Jon proved during our 10in10 ride back in June, his cycling ability depends very much on having sufficient cake intake so a cake stop was an absolute must.....
A ride with friends is always enjoyable with no pressure to reach targets or goals.... Si had come up with a really enjoyable route meandering as it did around the Dorset countryside. With only 1755 feet of ascent shown on the Garmin at the end of the 30 odd miles we completed, it was pretty flat (for Dorset) as well... It was an afternoon well spent and I look forward to my next opportunity to ride with these guys again......
Gareth Morns...Literally our first ride together in years....
Wednesday morning found me out on the bike again.....this time I was meeting up with Gareth Morns at the Sandbanks chain ferry for a ride over the Purbecks...

Now Gareth and I have not been out for a bike ride together for years.....and I really do mean years.....
Gareth was one of our 'Rev Pro Team'  who rode with me on the LEJOG ride we did to raise money for the Dorset Kidney Fund back in 2008....We are both pretty certain that was the last time that we actually cycled together...the years really do seem to fly by....!!
Gareth was responsible back then for getting me interested in cycling again after I'd had a break of about twenty years, so he has a lot to answer for..!!
Unfortunately with work commitments and a young family, it is not so easy these days for Gareth to fit the cycling in around a busy life but I hope that it won't be so long before our next ride together...
Gareth is a very capable cyclist and it was a pleasure to ride with him again this week......

So there we have it....riding into autumn and catching up with cycling friends.... there is not much better way to spend your time..........

Wednesday, 11 September 2013

Back to normal........

Well now that we are well and truly into September things are getting back to normal here at Purple Towers....
As I have mentioned before on this blog..the summer months are not really my favourite time of year, mainly because of how busy it seems to get on the local roads with the influx of visitors to the area. 

Looking back on the year, the winter seemed to hang on for ever...however we were lucky when we had our training camp back in early May. 
The weather up till then had been very cold, but for that week the temperature shot up and we had nice sunny days for our rides.. 
Following that week the weather went back to being cold again...indeed I remember the day we set off on the #10in10 ride it was bitterly cold and the ride through the Netherlands the next day wasn't much better either. 
Since then the summer weather finally arrived and we have had some absolutely stunning weather down here on the Dorset coast. 
Just checkout this picture taken from the end of our road only nine days ago........

Bournemouth beach close to Alum Chine
A beautiful sunny day and a busy beach.....Just a few days later and most of the visitors had gone, the children had gone back to school and the weather had taken on a really autumnal feel.

As I look out of my window as I type this I can see a very grey looking sea and it has started to rain. It is almost as if when August was finished and September started, a switch was thrown and nature just changed gear.....

Talking about changing gear....that is what I have done.
I have been getting back to more riding again.....

Throughout August I started back with regular use of the static bike.....I found that this bit of equipment had been a real boon for my training earlier in the year when the weather wasn't good and I was well pleased with the results that I got by using it for my preparation for the #10in10 ride.
It enabled me to focus my training on various aspects of my cycling in a way that 'going out for a ride' doesn't really allow you to do. I certainly intend to continue to factor it in to my training  programme over the coming winter.

Unfortunately at the end of August I was using the static bike and had programmed it for a very 'hilly' route. As the resistance increased as it racked up the gradient, there was a 'bang' and all the resistance disappeared. 
After investigation I found that the cable that runs from a servo motor to the resistance magnet had snapped...... I contacted the suppliers and I must say that they were first class.....within a few days the cable had been replaced and I was back training again... The suppliers told me that they had not had that happen before, so hopefully it's something that I won't experience again.

Since then I have also managed to get out on the Tifosi and the Felt as well, so hopefully everything will now get back to normal.
I hope to see some of you out on the roads around the Purbecks over the coming months......






Wednesday, 21 August 2013

After the 10in10....What next?

It's been about nine weeks since we completed the Ten in Ten ride....
On my return from Italy I didn't ride my bike for a couple of weeks and then I did one 50 mile ride with some friends and since then I have not ridden any of my bikes at all....

The main reasons for this are that I wanted a complete break from the bike, plus I also find that I don't get as much pleasure riding my local roads during July and August as they seem to get pretty busy with all the holidaymakers that flood into the area........ one of the drawbacks of living at a tourist spot......

Mind you at the beginning of August I did start to use my static training bike again so that I can  maintain my fitness at a reasonable level for when I start getting out on my bikes riding the Purbecks in September.....

A few last little notes regarding the Ten in Ten for those of you who might be interested....

Three of us were using Continental Gatorskin tyres....In fact the ones that I used had well over 1500 miles on them before I even started the challenge. None of us had a puncture!! Considering some of the rough sections of road we travelled  (particularly in Belgium) I think that we did pretty well...

No major mechanicals were suffered either apart from a saddle height adjustment by Lorenzo.....
A dropped chain at the lower slopes of the Splugen pass for Jon...and JD suffered a bent derailleur hanger that happened when he had his accident.
A bike shop near our campsite in Italy sorted it for him in an hour so that he could give the Ghisallo climb a go.....
All in all an uneventful ride on the mechanical side....

So......What next?
Well to be honest I have nothing in the pipeline at the moment. 
I had planned on riding the Lon Las Cymru across Wales in September with Peter Calcutt from the Backpackers club, but unfortunately he has had to pull out due to work commitments...great pity, as it is the second time that the trip has had to be postponed.  

For now I  am looking for a cycle tour or challenge ride for next year and any suggestions will be considered...... 
In the meantime as a little bit of motivation I have my 10in10 photos to keep me going as well as the Ghisallo medallions which I picked up in Italy and I have shown below...... 

Medallion from the Museo del Ciclismo

Medallion of the Santuario Madonna del Ghisallo (Rear)

Medallion of the Santuario Madonna del Ghisallo (Front)

Monday, 12 August 2013

#10in10 Storia del Santuario del Ghisallo.

At the end of my last blog post I said that I would give you some background history of the Santuario del Ghisallo........

The sanctuary of Ghisallo is a little church at Magreglio, which is 754m above sea level on the Vallassina road, which goes from Milan to Bellagio via Erba between the two branches of Lake Como. This blessed Virgin Mary is the Patron Saint of Cyclists.

The little church has no written history but according to tradition the Virgin Mary venerated on  the steep hill which it is named after and is probably of the type that the villagers used to put by the roadside to protect the villages and their religous heritage.

The holy image was set up in the woods of this area which at the time were full of brigands, who used to seek refuge here and enjoy the right of asylum.

Around the XI century it is said that in the area of Magreglio some brigands threatened to kill a certain Count of Ghisallo while he was out hunting. He prayed to the Madonna he had come across on the spot and the Virgin saved him. This is the reason why the image of the Madonna got the name of "Ghisallo" and she was soon venerated under this title.

A little church was built around the original shrine, followed after a while in 1623, by the little sanctuary which is a popular spot for visitors. 

Due to the geographical position of the Sanctuary, it has become a landmark for cycling competitions including the Tour of Lombardy in October. So the little church has become the symbol of the spiritual elevations of this sport.

On 13th October 1949 Pope Pius X11 appointed the Madonna of Ghisallo Patron Saint of Italian Cyclists.
As a result that image was and still is venerated by international cycling as it's Patron Saint and the place has become the focus of many pilgrimages and races.

In the little church there are gifts and trophies from the cycling world which cyclists have presented as a mark of their devotion to their Patron Saint from 1948 until the present day.
The 'Monument to the Cyclist' and busts of famous cycling personalities adorn the adjacent area.

Next to the Sanctuary was built the 'Museum of Cycling Madonna of Ghisallo'.
On May 31st 2006 Pope Benedict XV1 blessed the final stone of the building in the vatican, thereby solemnising the completion of the museum. This stone can be seen in the central room of the museum building and bears the inscription 'Omnia Vincit Amor' (love conquers all).
I have included below a few of the photos I took of some of the exhibits................












Monday, 5 August 2013

#10in10 Destination Santuario Madonna del Ghisallo

We had planned that our ten countries in ten days challenge would have an extra ride added on once we had arrived on the shores of Lake Como in Italy.
The day after we set up camp at a campsite at Lake Como that is what we set out to do....
I had been dreaming of doing this ride for about five years so for me it was a special day.......
View from our campsite at Lake Como

We all set off  from our campsite on a really stunning day....Lorenzo led us out as we rode from our site along the shores of Lake Como... The road conditions were variable, being rough in places....but the views were to die for.

Riding through the lakeside tunnels was really quite scary as you couldn't see the road surface. Riding from very bright sunlight into very dark tunnels was not easy but we all managed to survive it and we eventually arrived at Varenna where the ferries plied their trade across the lake......
Boarding the Ferry.

On the Ferry on route to Bellagio.
We bought our tickets and queued up for the ferry that would take us across the lake and to the small town of Bellagio which is where our Ghisallo climb would start. 

There were a couple of touring cyclists in the queue who we got talking to because JD had noticed that they were using hub gears....
JD has had a bit of a thing going regarding hub gears for some time now....He recently bought another bike that has a Shimano Nexus 13 speed hub gear so he was keen to swap notes with the couple in the queue...
View from the ferry on route to Bellagio.
 The trip on the ferry took about half an hour and the views were simply stunning....
Dave had taken the motorhome around the lake and we had arranged to meet on the Ghisallo climb.
When we arrived at Bellagio Lorenzo checked with a policeman which way we needed to go and we then set off for the start of the climb....

It was very...very..hot!! 35c+.....but hey it was better than rain.
There seemed to be a lot of climbing before we even started on the climb proper, highlighted by a white line and the letters spelling out START painted across the road........

I set off just ahead of JD and Lorenzo..... Jon decided that due to the previous days efforts on the Splugen Pass he just didn't have it in his legs to even start on the Ghisallo and he chose to head back to the lakeside and a small bar......

The heat didn't make the climb easy.....but after waiting five years to do it there was no way that I wasn't going to get to the top..... My arrival at the summit and the small chapel was a pretty emotional experience...well worth the struggle..

JD and Lorenzo managed to get almost halfway up the climb.....I am sure that if it hadn't been so hot they would have made it all the way to the top. Make no mistake they did really well to get as far as they did.....

Dave met up with JD and Lorenzo and swept them up in the motorhome and brought them to the summit where I was now waiting..... Jon had decided that he would stay at the lakeside bar so that the chapel and the adjacent museum could be seen on a future trip...he felt he only wanted to visit them if he had managed to cycle at least part of the way up......

As I said arriving at the summit was quite an emotional experience as was our visit inside the chapel..... JD left a photo of Joanne Rutherford, who had sadly died of cancer in March this year, with some other photos that had also been left in the chapel by loved ones. 

Lots of cycling history can be found inside the chapel and a visit should be on the tick list for every cyclist........

Some shots taken inside the chapel can be seen below......
In my next post I will give you some of the history of the Santuario Madonna del Ghisallo as well as some shots taken inside the adjacent cycling museum....


The setting of the Ghisallo chapel

Chapel entrance

Chapel and cycling memorabilia








Monument depicting  a winning and a fallen rider.

Monday, 29 July 2013

#10in10 meets the Tour De Suisse


 On the ninth day of our 10 in 10 ride we met up with the Tour de Suisse. 

Jon and I were heading for the town of Bad Ragaz set amongst the beautiful Swiss mountains....
From about five or six miles out from the town we seemed to be buzzed by a helicopter and I joked with Jon that it was just like being in the Tour De France with the TV helicopter flying over us...
As we entered the town and rounded a bend into one of the main streets we found ourselves right in the middle of the Pro Cycling 'village' for the Tour De Suisse....

Jon and I spent about and hour taking photos and soaking up the atmosphere of the whole event.... It was the last day of the Tour de Suisse and was a TT  day and the helicopter that had been constantly flying over us was of course the TV helicopter for the event......

Here are just a few of the pictures I took on my phone camera..... 









Cabin Fever .......

 Sorry for this week's posting being three days late but like the rest of the UK last weekend saw the arrival of storm Ciara and our in...