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Updated: 1 hour 13 min ago

Re: "End of the line for Europe's iconic night trains?"

11 October 2014 - 2:37pm
"Deutsche Bahn has postponed plans to operate through-trains to London, in a move that must be considered a set-back for international rail travel.
DB had been planning to operate high-speed ICE trains from Amsterdam and Frankfurt via Brussels and the Channel Tunnel into London St Pancras.
Indeed, after a delay of several years, DB finally secured permission last summer from the Tunnel authorities. Services were set to start after 2016."
Business Traveller 19/2/14

Re: Majorca Road Cycling

11 October 2014 - 2:26pm
Mark1978 wrote:Have to disagree with the general notion that drivers in Mallorca are the best behaved. Indeed I had about the same amount or perhaps more close passes than I would on an equivalent ride in the UK. Including one guy who sounded his horn and gesticulated at me when I was doing nothing more interesting than riding along in a straight line.

It may be that in the mountains and coast it's better but stray inland and it's like being back home.

Brits in a hire car methinks - latest one probably thought you were on wrong side of road...

Re: Chepstow to Portsmouth cycle route.

11 October 2014 - 1:56pm
Looking at the map, I'd have headed east out of Bristol to Chippenham, then SE to Devizes and Upavon, Ludgershall and Andover. Then Stockbridge, Winchester, Hambledon and Waterlooville to come into Pompey through Cosham and North End.

I've ridden many of those roads, but not for twenty odd years or so.

Re: Not just the trains

11 October 2014 - 1:53pm
mjr wrote:foxyrider wrote:Next Monday sees the last sailing of the DFDS Harwich-Esjberg ferry route, how are we supposed to get to Scandinavia now?
Daytime train, changing Brussels, Cologne and Hamburg. Once DB start running through the channel tunnel, you'll have the option of skipping the Brussels change.
When might this be? have you any more info about this?

Re: Chepstow to Portsmouth cycle route.

11 October 2014 - 1:42pm
I'd probably go roughly Bristol, south towards Shepton Mallet, east to Shaftesbury, across Cranborne Chase or a bit south of it, through the New Forest to Lymington, ferry to Isle of Wight, the ferry to Portsmouth.

Re: Majorca Road Cycling

11 October 2014 - 12:56pm
Well like anywhere there are always good and bad, and there is an occasional idiot driver even on Mallorca, but in general the standard is far higher with far less close passes and gesticulating motorists than I would have on my average commute. Sorry to hear of your experience.

Re: Dry bags - a lightweight alternative to panniers

11 October 2014 - 11:49am
Sooper8 wrote:daddig wrote:I'm considering using items from the likes of Alpkit to make the bags more stable and make the fitting and removal easier !


I'd be interested in this idea. I am going down this route too and any pointers would be appreciated.

By the way - You know on Alpkit site at moment, in clearance, they have a few dry bags with slight faults at discount price?

The fault being they leak?

There is a thread on here about the drybag panniers i made - viewtopic.php?f=42&t=83886

Re: Dry bags - a lightweight alternative to panniers

11 October 2014 - 10:16am
daddig wrote:I'm considering using items from the likes of Alpkit to make the bags more stable and make the fitting and removal easier !


I'd be interested in this idea. I am going down this route too and any pointers would be appreciated.

By the way - You know on Alpkit site at moment, in clearance, they have a few dry bags with slight faults at discount price?

Chepstow to Portsmouth cycle route.

11 October 2014 - 9:57am
Fifteen of us are planning to cycle from Anglesey to Paris in July 2015. Though we are familiar with the route down to Chepstow we have no experience of cycling from Chepstow to Portsmouth. Any suggestions would be much appreciated. Thanks,
Gethyn.

Re: Majorca Road Cycling

11 October 2014 - 6:44am
Have to disagree with the general notion that drivers in Mallorca are the best behaved. Indeed I had about the same amount or perhaps more close passes than I would on an equivalent ride in the UK. Including one guy who sounded his horn and gesticulated at me when I was doing nothing more interesting than riding along in a straight line.

It may be that in the mountains and coast it's better but stray inland and it's like being back home.

Re: Spain trip

10 October 2014 - 8:18pm
Goinridin wrote:I'm just in the very first stage of planning my next adventure. I haven't done anything since going coast to Coast over the
Pyreneese in 2010 after which I had my bike nicked. Anyway I'm feeling the itch to go on another journey.
For the last couple of years I've parked my motorhome up on a motorhome site quite close to Benidorm for around 3 months from early February to the middle of May. For 2015 I was thinking of instead of training on my racing bike around Benidorm I would have a bike tour of 3/4 weeks from Benidorm to follow the coast through Spain and Portugal to Compostela de Santiago and back through Madrid.
Does anyone have any tips, information as to wild camping, camping sites in fact any info at all. I intend/hope to wildcamp2 days and then campsite or b&b for 1 night to freshen up, and so on, I intend to begin in early May.

I'd suggest that the coastal route is damn hard work and not particularly pleasant, and downright dangerous in places, the cement trucks are Spain's skip wagons. The whole coast is v.busy and the roads not built for such capacity. Wild camping is practically non-existent, unless you are ok with sharing it with desperate immigrants and vagrants. Paid for camping is available but not cheap.

I'd go inland, traffic drops to super safe levels, it's a tranquil, another world and there are plenty of opportunities to safely wild camp.

Re: Dry bags - a lightweight alternative to panniers

10 October 2014 - 6:46pm
It has started to work for me , though I've stopped using a rack , rather now I use a roll top waterproof bag(13ltr) strapped to my seat pin / saddle and another strapped to my bars. A lot less weight to carry makes my life a lot easier .
I'm considering using items from the likes of Alpkit to make the bags more stable and make the fitting and removal easier !
It has to be said though I aim to carry as little as possible !

Re: Pamir Highway

10 October 2014 - 4:38pm
I flew to Van with a stopover in Istanbul with my bike on Turkish Airlines and had no problem at all, so I doubt you'd have any issues to Bishkek.

I've also ridden quite a chunk of the Pamir Highway, written up here: http://www.crazyguyonabike.com/doc/standiet

To be honest, the Kyrgyz part is nowhere near as good to ride as the Tajik part. There's too much traffic, there are some quite boring stretches and it can be terribly hot. My advice is to get to the Tajik Pamir as quickly as you can and explore the area in depth - it's very very rewarding, especially around Khorog. The best bits are, as you might expect, away from the Pamir Highway but you have to be prepared for appalling roads and no supplies.

If I was to go there again I'd fly into Dushanbe, not Bishkek.

Re: Dry bags instead of panniers

10 October 2014 - 4:35pm
I tried using one as a saddle bag: my experience, good and bad, was similar to yours. The main bugbear with it for me was the extra awkwardness when I wanted to get inside and find things quickly.

Dry bags - a lightweight alternative to panniers

10 October 2014 - 3:48pm
It struck me that it's pretty easy to strap a regular roll top dry bag to a bike rack. I'm sure I'm not the first to have this idea but having a look online it seems like it is not a popular one. However, there are advantages...

+A Lot lighter - 190g (+a little for strap and bungee) compared to 875g for one of my Ortlieb Back Rollers. Across two panniers that's nearly a kilo and a half of weight saved.
+A Lot cheaper - less than a tenner for this one compared to £90 for a pair of Ortliebs
+No pannier rattle
+In-built compression straps!

-Less durable. The weight on those Ortliebs is not for nothing. If you were to wipe out with dry bags on the rack you'd better hope you have a roll of duct tape handy.
-Less convenient to attach/dettach. Takes a little longer to get on and off. However, while touring I only put my panniers on at the start of the day and take them off at the end so an extra minute of inconvenience is neglibile.
-Less easy to get inside and dig around in. A more real inconvenience I reckon but anything I need to regularly access in up front in my handelbar bag anyway.

What are your thoughts?

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