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Re: Edinburgh airport

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 26 May 2015 - 10:11pm
I knoow nothing about Edinburgh or Scotlandshire trains

but I was curious and have too much time on my hands

according to openstreetmap and the friendly google map you could cycle the 3.2 miles from the airport to South Gyle Station where I assume you could board a train (I assume that Scotrail do take bikes by your ambition get to a train station) to wherever it is in Edinburgh that you can catch a train to Aberdeen

Edit - it is confirmed that I know nothing about Scotlandshire - as I said being curious - I checked the trains - going to Edinburgh is the wrong way - looks lie there are regular stoppers (which I assume you wouldnt need a reservation) to Dundee from Sooth Gyle - and a pleasant service to Aberdeen from Dundee - feel free to smack me with a freshly smoked kipper if this is all bull

Re: Butser Hill - proposed cyclepath for the missing link

CTC Forum - On the road - 26 May 2015 - 10:04pm
We've got one of those alongside the A1076 Gayton Road in Gaywood, Norfolk. It's unpopular and many people on bikes still use the carriageway. Have Hampshire really got enough income to waste building horrible things? Give them a week and go to the local press - if it's linked to either Archant or Johnson Press, I expect they can find the occasional "why don't they use the cycle track?" / "because it's awful" exchanges in the EDP or Lynn News letters pages.

Re: Lon Las Cymru - 4 or 5 days

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 26 May 2015 - 9:51pm
Nice. I will have my GPS with me as well. I also have the Sustrans LLC North and South map but will take a look at that link you posted.

Those are the two areas where the steepness looks about right. I have my proposed route posted in my own thread on here but it pretty much sticks to the NCN 8 as best as one can while using RideWithGPS. Some sections the route goes a little bonky but I blame that on the mapping software.

I am hoping for some drier weather (rained every day on my Ireland trip) when I am there as well, in order to better see said scenery.

Re: Cycling to school for years, but children no longer happ

CTC Forum - On the road - 26 May 2015 - 9:28pm
ferdinand wrote:I'm still reflecting on cycle paths, but I think we need both Major and Minor versions

No, please no!

We don't need "cycle paths", they've been tried and have failed terribly. You just end up with footway conversions, which are narrow, not safe, give away priority at every side road, and annoy pedestrians.

We simply need what the Dutch have (and to a certain extent also the Danes). We need cycleways - ways that are designed for bicycles to use, just as carriageways are designed for motor carriages. Dutch-style cycleways are good enough for all cyclists, from children aged 8 cycling on their own to school, all the way to teams of racing cyclists passing through. It's not difficult, although it does need some careful attention to detail and a strong commitment to build them. But, once built, the entire population can make use of them, leading to better health, less congestion, less pollution, less danger, better community interaction, etc, etc.

As an update, we've now been walking to school instead of cycling for some weeks now. The difference is amazing: almost stress-free school journeys! It takes me 40 minutes to get to and from school, compared to 20 minutes on the bike, but it's so much more pleasant. There's no way I'd ever recommend anyone to cycle to school now. Walk, or go by car, I say.

Re: Is a cadence sensor worth it?

CTC Forum - On the road - 26 May 2015 - 9:13pm
I did a health appraisal thingy at work and they asked me to pedal a stationary bike at 55 rpm. I found it very difficult - my natural cadence is much higher (but what I dunno). The guy administering the test said regular cyclists found turning the cranks so slowly difficult.

Re: Lon Las Cymru - 4 or 5 days

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 26 May 2015 - 9:07pm
No write-up I'm afraid, only the video.

NCN 8 is fairly well sign-posted the whole length of the route. There are some instances where signs are missing or obscured by vegetation, but overall easy to follow. Still, I had my gps which made things a lot easier when navigating. Also, as backup I had a printed copy of the route from http://cycle.travel/route/lon_las_cymru (recommended).

There are lots of gates! Best addition to my bike before leaving for the ride (apart from the GPS) was the fitting of a kick-stand. Used this a lot when going through gates, as well as for taking pics when there wasn't anything to lean the bike against.

There are some steep sections. The two memorable ones are the the climb up to the hills at the back of Harlech (I reckon around 22% near the beginning) and the long winding climb between Machynlleth and Llanidloes.

The scenery is amazing and so varied. Lush green valleys when following the Wye, to the barren hills around Snowdonia when your only company will be the sheep. Like I did, I'm sure you'll have the most fantastic and memorable journey.

Re: Is a cadence sensor worth it?

CTC Forum - On the road - 26 May 2015 - 8:50pm
Swear by them. Multiple knee surgeries (both knees), need a good cadence. Use mine most when training and racing (Tris/TTs). Ideal cadence at threshold Heart Rate (from my HRM) = best I can do...

My "natural" cadence is 93rpm. No idea why, that's where it feels right.

I use a cateye astrale to measure mine with rear wheel speed / distance sensor and cadence. I have 3 of them across the bikes (don;t have one on the MTB...) they're all 20+ years old. One has a cracked screen and leaks water from a crash many years ago - cling film wrap cures it and allows perfect visibility.

Re: Butser Hill - proposed cyclepath for the missing link

CTC Forum - On the road - 26 May 2015 - 8:43pm
On no, here we go again . . . . . .

my email to county highways
to implementation@hants.gov.uk
Hello implementation

It is good to see the work getting under way.

Alas, I have an immediate concern about the first section from Bollinge Hill southwards.

From the work so far, it looks like the contractors are going to keep the existing footpath tarmac and just patch it wider.

The existing tarmac is "footpath quality" - lumpy and completely inadequate for a cycle track.

Please tell me that I am wrong about what they appear to be doing.

Best WIshes
Graham

Re: Cycling to school for years, but children no longer happ

CTC Forum - On the road - 26 May 2015 - 8:41pm
pwa wrote: Whether such a culture could be established in a large town or city, I don't know. But it does seem to work pretty well here.

I think a split between through traffic and local traffic is important for that, and I'd identify closing off ratruns as key there so that residential areas are *residential*.

I'm also finding that my opinions are shifting towards blanket 20mph limits on non-numbered roads (with necessary exceptions), and A and B roads to have 30mph limits in urban areas. That is all in aid of reducing differential speeds. I would also apply the limits to cyclists.

I'm still reflecting on cycle paths, but I think we need both Major and Minor versions, one segregated from peds for people to cover distances (eg between towns or along desire lines), and the other to be more for "leisure and local".

Ferdinand

Re: St.Malo to Nice

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 26 May 2015 - 8:27pm
Thanks Aquilo! I'll check it out.

Re: Edinburgh airport

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 26 May 2015 - 7:57pm
If you are weary and it's pouring rain, you can put bike in a taxi at airport. Waverley, £25ish, Edinburgh Park probably £10ish.

Re: Cycling to school for years, but children no longer happ

CTC Forum - On the road - 26 May 2015 - 7:52pm
I've read the posts here and it is a sad reflection on our society.... It'll take a lot to change the "car is king" attitude we've cultivated. I live in a rural area but schools are only 1-1.5 miles away..... no children walk or cycle to school they all get taken by car. It beggars belief to see it like a mini rush hour, unfortunately the parents always state roads being unsafe for kid's ( middle years not toddlers ). Some of my close calls on the bike have been passing the local school with parents pulling out without looking in their mirrors etc so their argument is weak. My thoughts as a compromise solution to avoiding road use but having a fit and healthy commute to school would be a scooter as in link below:-

http://www.micro-scooters.co.uk/scooters-model-maxi-micro-ages-6-12/maxi-micro-4in1-luggage-scooter-trainers.html

Forget the price etc theres many others, it's the principle with ability to carry school backpack etc and make for fast scoot to school with other friends... your post mentioned some already doing this. It bridges the gap between the bike on road and the slower walk to school if felt too long. Its comes down to if they like that mode of travel but it looks quite efficient.

MTB Ride round coast of Spain

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 26 May 2015 - 7:44pm
Any one interested in joining me on a bike ride round the coast of Spain and & Portugal now postponed till I can find some one to go with me as I was let down by my friend I'm willing to postpone to a date that's good for you so long as it's not too late in the season as it would be too hot and ferry from Plymouth or Portsmouth to Santander Spain what ever suits you and returning same route all you will need is a good hard tail mountain bike with panniers and racks sleeping bag and your personal equipment and funds to pay your way. I have two man tent and all the camping equipment or you can use your own I can help with any bike repairs and servicing before we go and on route any questions please call me ASAP

PS check my videos on YouTube ( 25 stone rider ) of my last ride I did in Spain from Blanes to Valencia last November.

MTB Ride round coast of Spain

CTC Forum - MTB - 26 May 2015 - 7:43pm
Any one interested in joining me on a bike ride round the coast of Spain and & Portugal now postponed till I can find some one to go with me as I was let down by my friend I'm willing to postpone to a date that's good for you so long as it's not too late in the season as it would be too hot and ferry from Plymouth or Portsmouth to Santander Spain what ever suits you and returning same route all you will need is a good hard tail mountain bike with panniers and racks sleeping bag and your personal equipment and funds to pay your way. I have two man tent and all the camping equipment or you can use your own I can help with any bike repairs and servicing before we go and on route any questions please call me ASAP

PS check my videos on YouTube ( 25 stone rider ) of my last ride I did in Spain from Blanes to Valencia last November.

Re: What do you do with your luggage if sightseeing?

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 26 May 2015 - 7:18pm
Put your valuables and important papers in a bar bag and take it with you while you sightsee, leaving the bike locked up.
Rely on gut feeling in campsites, if the place looks rough then don't stay there in the first place, but if you must then take the valuables with you.
People have horror stories regarding hearing of someone being robbed in a campsite, but I've never heard a first hand report, I think it is a rare occurrence.
I don't carry much of any value that will not fit in my bar bag apart from tent, sleeping bag and air mattress.
When sightseeing in towns I find it more convenient to walk and leave the bike locked up at the campsite/hotel/hostel, perhaps taking a bus into city centres if it's too far to walk.
I think there is a lot of unjustified concern regarding fear of theft while touring

Re: Confusingly signed cycle routes

CTC Forum - On the road - 26 May 2015 - 7:12pm
meic wrote:Another little gem is that a council will just come and close a section without notifying anybody sometimes just to allocate the space for building contractors to store their supplies . So at anytime up to a month later your volunteer will find out and then have to try and work out a patch to a route which was already tortuous, while they themselves just miss the whole mess out by riding with full priority on a direct road a quarter of the length which the path is trying to avoid.
I'll throw something else into that mix. The Volunteer has to get permission from the highway authority before they can sign a diversion to agree the proposed route. Gaining permission can be problematic. If a Volunteer does get permission the Sustrans sticker kit for diversions is more limited than the standard set.

mjr wrote:There are two ways to improve this that we're trying in West Norfolk: the first is to get as many cycleways as possible designated as highways with highway reference numbers (biggest routes first) which should mean that they appear on http://norfolk.roadworks.org before they are closed (so we can and they should have to have proper diversions as required by the Street Works Act - this isn't yet happening consistently but we seem to be moving forwards; the second is that we got disruption to cycleways included in the Norfolk Permit Scheme so utilities companies should have to avoid just blocking the whole shebang and putting up "cyclists dismount" nonsense or loose-packed gravel tracks - that's a tougher task because the nature of Permit Scheme works is they've often packed up and gone by the time complaints reach the county council.

If you are having some success already you might want to aim for something like this from Sustrans Scotland. I don't know whether that happens in practice or is just some utopian statement of intent but it looks good.

Re: Lightweight packable trousers - recommendations please

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 26 May 2015 - 7:11pm
You haven't said what sort of touring or what you intend to do in the evenings. There's been some excellent advice on the sort of trousers I'd want for lounging around the campsite and going down the pub, but this might not be what you want.
Plain black golfing trousers from the likes of Sports Direct, pack smaller, dry quicker and are more crease resistant than my Rohan trousers, not bad for around £8. They are nothing like as robust, but then you might not be looking for that. I set of without any evening trousers once and bought some cheap polyester ones from Primark, they were fine.

Re: St.Malo to Nice

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 26 May 2015 - 7:02pm
Hi
Rode St Malo Nice last summer. Can't comment on bike hire, but can help with trains as I had to get back to St Malo.

In short you can return up the East side of France to St Malo via Paris, but you have to put bike in a bag as far as Paris if using TGV. Plus you may have to change stations in Paris with your bike in a box.

I couldn't be bothered with that and got a local train to Narbonne then TGV via Bordeaux, Paris, St Malo with bike in one piece. No need to change in Paris, just platforms at Montparnasse. Don't forget to book your bike on the TGV as soon as you can up to 3 months before you travel.

I didn't follow the route you mentioned, but it's a great ride across France and the Alps just top off the ride at the end.
Have fun

Re: Cycling to school for years, but children no longer happ

CTC Forum - On the road - 26 May 2015 - 6:58pm
A really sad post.

Our kids cycle to school with my wife several times a week. The littlest is 6 and is on the pavement. But he's also been on the back of one of our tandems a lot. It is about 1.5 miles in Liverpool one road is quite busy but with mostly polite and courteous drivers.

I think your experiences are a really sad reflection on the UK.

Advice about Go-pros, water pistols and other methods of 'dealing' with drivers is fine as an exercise of fantasy but won't help you or anyone else. Antagonising drivers won't stop you getting killed and might make for a very unpleasant confrontation- or worse.

My advice is:

KEEP CALM AND CARRY ON

Re: What do you do with your luggage if sightseeing?

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 26 May 2015 - 6:43pm
Try doing an advanced search (top right of page) on security. There have been a number of recent posts on security of panniers when sightseeing, security of money, security of barbags, etc.

Many people have a strategy for panniers, but it often boils down to what suits at the time. Generally most would say that it is not a major problem, especially if there are two of you (watcher and shopper).
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