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....

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...