After 22 hours I finally made it from Eastbourne up to Wick, before cycling for 1hr40 in winds of up to 40mph up to JOG. After getting a fellow tourist to take my photo, I quickly got back on my bike to cycle back. No point in hanging around in the cold at JOG...
Over 18 hours on trains can get a bit boring, luckily I was in the privileged position of being given my own sleeper birth rather than having to share. A good nights sleep was had before being provided with several cups of coffee and shortbread by carriage host David at 7am. Looking out the window whilst drinking said coffee, was not inspiring. As we were going through the Cairngorms a blizzard ensued, which although the mountains looked fantastic, it doesn't bode well for the next couple of days.
Tonight I am staying in the Harbour House B&B in Wick. Very comfy room, no ensuite, but a private bathroom across the hall, so not so bad. I have been to the local Weatherspoons for food, chicken wings to start followed by chicken curry, all washed down by a couple of pints of beer. £1.85 a pint, I love Scotland :-)
Tomorrow it's breakfast in bed at 7.30!
hope to get a few miles in before 2nd breakfast, looking forward to getting up Berridale first. A few big bridges to go across tomorrow which I'm really not looking forward to. Ho hum. Onwards and downwards.
17 miles done. 55mins.
On the train to Wick, I've seen snow, rain and sun today so far. Typical day in Scotland....
So I've battled across London on the bike, it's actually a lot quicker than in a car, but even more scary.. :-S Cabin has been found for the night and already met another JOGLE'r who is doing it in 11 days. Time will tell how much sleep I can get, not exactly much room in this cabin.
So, just one week to go until I catch the train up to Scotland to start on my JOGLE. I must admit nerves are starting to kick in, as well as excitement and anticipation. Early forecasts are for the weather to be lenient on the first couple of days, but as we all know, that is likely to change between now and the 23rd May. I have done a trial run of packing my bag and although it is going to be a tight squeeze, it looks as though I can just about manage to get everything in with a little bit of squashed room for food each day. I might have to have my non cycling shoes wrapped in a bag and strapped to my Carradice Nelson Longflap though.
A couple of weekends ago I had the pleasure of going to the Enigma Bikes open day in Hailsham and what a thoroughly enjoyable day it was. Lots of cakes, coffee and beautiful bikes. Not only did we get to see how the bike frames were made, but I also managed to grab a ride on the new Equinox. Just need to find about £5K to spec it to how I would like….. Sean Yates was there also. For those of you that are not really into cycling, Sean is one of the greatest British riders of all time. He has won stages at some of the biggest cycle events in the World; Tour De France – to wear the Maillot Jaune, Vuelta a Espana and also Paris-Nice. Not only that, but he was part of the team last year that coached Bradley Wiggins to win the Tour De France. Not a bad Palmarès.
I have been out on a few longish rides over the last week or two, but will probably let the legs rest a little between now and next week, just a few laps of Beachy Head and other local rides. The bike has been checked over, chain oiled, gears indexed, brakes adjusted, just need the engine to be filled with food ;-)
Same again tonight as I did my favourite ride around Beachy Head. 2 seconds quicker than last night I might add. As Dave Brailsford would say, it all adds up (or subtracts, whichever way you want to look at it).
I have a decision to make about Saturday, go for a long ride or go to the Enigma open day. I know I should do the long ride, but Enigma are showing off all their frame making skills which sounds fascinating and something that you don't get to see normally. Also, they have former Yellow Jersey wearer and stage winner at the TdF and Vuelta, Sean Yates, turning up for a two hour ride in the afternoon. Will have to give them a call tomorrow morning to see if I can borrow a demo bike for the day. I could always do a couple more hours afterwards.
This time in 3 weeks I will have completed the first 17 miles of my JOGLE.
3 weeks today I shall be on the train up to Scotland to start my JOGLE. The weeks seem to be flying by as I get closer to the start date, nerves, apprehension but also excitement is starting to creep in. A cheeky little 16 miles were done tonight as I aim to ride every day this month. Strava has a challenge to cycle as many km's as possible this month, I'm aiming for 3000+ :-)