A record of my cycling trips in Britain and abroad



Ok, now I know I haven’t posted anything on here for *AGES*. And I know I said before that I’d try to post more often… but this time I will. And I’m going to post about more topics, as this blog is getting a facelift! I’m going to put on other things, besides just my cycling trips. Walking, camping, and possibly general life goings-on too. Hopefully that will liven up things for you, dear reader; especially in the dark winter days to come, when I may not get out on the bike quite so much.

So without further ado, read on…

Yes, the days are drawing in now I fear. Summer has been gallantly holding on - just last weekend, I was happily walking around in shorts and tshirt. Even the light mist, turning to drizzle, on Sunday’s ride felt more like summer rain. And what a ride it was! I think the Tissington Trail will definitely be up there amongst my most memorable rides - and I hope to ride there many more times! It’s a wonderful, level, car-free trail that stretches for nearly 20 miles (although I’m not quite sure which bits are officially part of the named trail - Wikipedia gives its length as 13 miles, but we definitely rode more than than; our out and back took us to about 40).

Not only is it car-free, but the views are spectacular. It runs along the route of an old railway line, and fortunately most of it seems to be on an embankment rather than in a cutting, affording fine views of upland farming interspersed with rocky outcrops. I can’t wait to head back there!

However, there’s definitely a change coming in the weather. Even yesterday, the clear blue sky felt like a summer’s day, although there was a coolness to the air that wasn’t there last week. Today however, the autumn gales came in. I didn’t cycle this weekend - I went walking, covering some of the Wicklow Way (in, sensibly, County Wicklow). And it was, to use a good solid word for it, blustery. Despite being sheltered in the trees at the start, and able to set out in shorts and a long sleeve top, as soon as we’d left the woods my sturdy red walking jacket came on (which I must have had now for over 15 years - I think that’s a testament to the quality of Lowe Alpine products from that era). Not long after that, my waterproof trousers and gloves went on too, not for the rain, but for the biting wind that cut with a stinging blast I haven’t felt for many months.

We took a detour an the way out, bypassing the intriguingly-named Djouce, and headed straight out to the White Hill - so named, I imagine, for the quartz outcrops dotting the summit. Turning to face the wind, we climbed to the top of Djouce, and despite the chill it was well worth the effort, with spectacular views of range after range of the Wicklow Hills to the south and west, and the sea shining beyond the Great Sugar Loaf to the east.

So that’s the summary for today - and as the nights get longer, so, hopefully, will this blog! ;)

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