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Re: A Sad Day for Google Maps

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 11 May 2015 - 12:46pm
I haven't added anywhere above 60°N to cycle.travel, because the SRTM elevation data only goes to 60°N and that's what's used for the hillshading on the map, for the route-planning calculations, and for the elevation profile display. Other sources of elevation data are available, but it'll be a lot of work to gather them together and to adapt the code to work with the various different formats, and it's not been my top priority.

The countries currently included in cycle.travel's mapping and route-planning are Andorra, Germany, Austria, Switzerland, UK, Ireland, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, France, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Portugal, Slovenia and Spain.

(I am currently working on adding a couple more countries... but I'm afraid neither of them are Norway!)

Re: Hebrides tour

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 11 May 2015 - 12:43pm
Options for return to Oban:

a) Ride back.
Not really feasible if all the time you have is a week. The shortest route is Tarbert - Uig ferry, ride across Skye, ferry Armadale to Mallaig, ride to Lochaline, ferry to Mull, ferry Craignure to Oban. There's also the Kilchoan - Tobermory ferry, that works out about 5 miles further, or Corran ferry & Connel bridge (not via Mull) that's about 8 miles further than Tobermory.

b) ferry to Stornoway to Ullapool, ride to Inverness, train

c) ferry Tarbert - Uig, ride to Armadale, ferry to Mallaig, train

d) ferry Tarbert - Uig, ride to Kyle, train

e) ferry to Stornoway to Ullapool, Highland bike bus via Ullapool/Durness to Inverness, train
http://www.inverness-durness-highland-bike-bus.co.uk/
May be a bit late to book this.

Whatever, you'll probably need to investigate train timetables.

Re: Signs - Minutes or Mileage

CTC Forum - On the road - 11 May 2015 - 12:36pm
whizzzz wrote:This was just what I was thinking both, a time for a slow / new rider and a distance would cover those who "get" miles and those who would think "wow, only 10 mins by bike, I might give that a go as I think I can do that long on a bike..." but who might shy away from a 2 mile ride. I love the idea that more people might try riding to something as simple as this.
The slow/new riders would not believe that they could cover 2 miles in the time given, or get depressed and give up riding if they didn't. The fast riders would take the times as a challenge to beat, adding the given times to the segment names on Strava and encouraging everyone to take mad risks and knock down old ladies on their way to evensong and pregnant women pushing prams. Worst of all worlds, isn't it?

Re: Hebrides tour

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 11 May 2015 - 12:08pm
Getting back to the start (Oban) can be pretty difficult as far as I am aware. I am planning an Outer Hebrides tour - Vatersay to Butt of Lewis for next May and I had been planning to drive to Uig on the Isle of Skye and take the ferry to Lochmaddy on North Uist then take our 2 bikes on the bus to Eriskay (island connected to the southern tip of South UIst) and onto the Island of Barra and cycle to Vatersay;

Here's a link to bus services in Scotland and travelling with a bike;

http://www.travelinescotland.com/cms/co ... bike.xhtml

When we get to the Butt of Lewis we will be cycling to Stornoway, staying over night then taking the bus to Tarbet on Lewis to get the ferry back to Uig on Skye.

I have walked and cycled in the Outer Hebrides before and one thing not to underestimate is the strength of the wind. I remember one day planning to cycle from North Uist to South and only getting as far as Benbecula because the wind was almost blowing me backwards!

Re: A Sad Day for Google Maps

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 11 May 2015 - 12:06pm
jamesgilbert wrote:The new version is very slow for me too, but even with the old version I rarely used google maps for route planning as there are much better services out there (http://cycle.travel/map being one of the best in my opinion).

It seems a bit challenged geographically speaking. It finds Gol here in Norway, and can plan a route over to FInse but it then places Gol in Oslo and expects you to take the boat from Oslo to Haugesund (?) There is also virtually no information on the map north of Oslo...
a_temp.jpg

Re: Caution Cyclists Signs

CTC Forum - On the road - 11 May 2015 - 11:58am
drossall wrote:Tonyf33 wrote:They are utterly futile IMHO, here is the ONLY crossing to get to Stevenage from Letchworth ...

I'd give it a wide berth, and go via Willian and Wymondley, or from Willian via the Great North Cycle Route, across the fields towards Graveley.
Oh I use it frequently, it's a habit as much as anything else though I have gone the Willian/Wymondly/Gravely route on the odd occasion but the lanes in places are very narrow and twisty in places. It just infuriates me that when they built the bypass they thought right we'll put a crossing in for cyclists but we'll put a warning sign up only 3-4 seconds worth of driving time ahead and ensure that the signs actually hide people standing/waiting at the crossing due to the crown of the bend, you couldn't make it up

Re: Hebrides tour

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 11 May 2015 - 11:39am
I'm planning a similar tour in June though slightly longer. Anyway, my knowledge on the area is pretty slim and people on here will be able to help a lot more, however, one thing I do know is cycling North - South is generally considered to have the winds (prevailing winds south - south west) continually against you so most people will always ride South - North starting on Barra. Check out Calmac ferries they offer loads of 'hopscotch' tickets so planning a route based on ferries is pretty simple.

I'm also planning on wild camping on my tour and am largely going for a flexible approach i.e. if its absolutely horrible out then I'll take refuge in a hostel (Gatliff (sp?) hostels are worth checking out) or at least camp in the hostels grounds. I've also heard camping on the Eastern sides of isles can provide more sheltered areas though the West I assume will offer more scenic views. Lastly, midges love hanging around low lying water so again those scenic views can become pretty irritating if the midges come in.

Re: Signs - Minutes or Mileage

CTC Forum - On the road - 11 May 2015 - 11:18am
sirmy wrote:Oddly on road signs The North only refers to the area west of the Pennines, places to the East are listed by name(and there's a limited number of them that can be used)!

I'm fairly sure that there are signs to The North to be found on the A1, including in Northumberland. There are also signs to The North to be found in Scotland, I particularly remember seeing one in Fort William as it struck me as quite funny.

Re: Signs - Minutes or Mileage

CTC Forum - On the road - 11 May 2015 - 9:52am
I think it needs further definition. A fat man minute might be more than a slim lass minute.... they could have names '`five Pickwicks to town centre' 'Just a Wiggo away.'

Re: A Sad Day for Google Maps

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 11 May 2015 - 9:47am
The new version is very slow for me too, but even with the old version I rarely used google maps for route planning as there are much better services out there (http://cycle.travel/map being one of the best in my opinion).

What I do find google maps useful for is looking for campsites, supermarkets, bike shops, hotels, cinemas, etc etc in a specific area. As you often get a link directly to the website from the map, this makes planning accommodation very easy, and I haven't yet found a similar service that works all over Europe.

Re: Text Only UK Weather Forecasts

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 11 May 2015 - 9:40am
The mobile site at YR.no is pretty lightweight, perhaps worth a look. It loads quickly on my old Nokia candy bar phone (using Opera Mini). It shows wind direction and speed as well as temperature and precipitation.

For example the forecast for Scunthorpe

Re: Myanmar

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 11 May 2015 - 9:37am
I did this but nearly 20 years ago now, when the place was still very dictatorial/police-military state and it was a bit of a wonder you could get away with cycling around the country at all, though you were very limited where you could go. Things have lightened up there since. Indeed in principle the whole country is open, and also some border crossings. But in practice some remoter areas remain insecure and some people trying to travel into some more remote things have met persuasive people with guns. But they are still very fussy about no camping and only staying in accom registered to take foreigners, but there is a lot more of it now, and you can also sometimes stay in monasteries too. But it has also become very popular with tourists in general and there is considerable pressure on accom in main tourist spots and prices in these areas are now very high by SE Asian standards.

There's a number of threads on https://www.lonelyplanet.com/thorntree/ ... -your-bike which are worth reading, and probably also worth looking at their Myanmar branch too.

In the time I went there, scenery was not the primary interest of most of the places you could go, it was rather more about people and places, though the scenery was not tedious. Taking advantage of the greater freedoms of today, I think there is more scenic interest available. You are wise to go there in winter.

Re: cyclocross for touring

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 11 May 2015 - 9:30am
i had a look at the spa tourer ,the 48 is 600 wheels rather have 700 to be honest but the top tibe on the 51 seems very long to me 54.5 if im reading is correct .i suffer with back problems so i reckon i would be way over stretched on that bike
im 5.6inx inside leg 29ins am i loking at the wrong size frame .
i was hoping to get a frame obviously one thats fits perfect, but enough room to fit a thudbuster st seatpost .
going by my size and inside leg measurements what do u guys reckon i should go for..
my Terry Dolan is 48 but a sloping top tube.besides the the angles would be completly different to the SPA frame so couldnt really compair the too.

chers
jags.

Re: Signs - Minutes or Mileage

CTC Forum - On the road - 11 May 2015 - 9:21am
Richard Fairhurst wrote:sirmy wrote:The use of time on a sign rather than distances isn't aimed at people who would post on forums like this. To many people a ride of 10 minutes is a lot less intimidating than one of 1.5 miles, even though at about 10mph they are roughly the same (about 6 minutes a mile).

Yep, that's exactly it. They're there for marketing, not just information - "why not try cycling? It's quicker than you think, and might be quicker than this traffic jam you're currently stuck in". I think they were first tried in Aylesbury, one of the Cycling Demonstration Towns.


This was just what I was thinking both, a time for a slow / new rider and a distance would cover those who "get" miles and those who would think "wow, only 10 mins by bike, I might give that a go as I think I can do that long on a bike..." but who might shy away from a 2 mile ride. I love the idea that more people might try riding to something as simple as this.

Hebrides tour

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 11 May 2015 - 9:08am
Hi , we will be doing our first 'proper' tour sometime in June and need a little advice. My son is11 and is quite a stong cyclist however has only done the Berwick to newcastle part of the coast and castles route. He was 9 at the time and managed 96 miles in 3 days fully loaded with gear (sweets ) . I need a starter for this tour in that which way is best to do it ie oban . Start or harris/North to start. Also if we left the car at say Oban what are the logistics like for getting back to Oban from the finish ie is There some sort of bus etc which would take us and the bikes back to Oban . We are planning on doing the whole trip by wild camping and doing over 5 to 7 days . I don't want to put him off as he really enjoyed the coast and castles but expect this would be more hilly/windy . And advice in particular route and wild camping would be appreciated ! 

Re: A Sad Day for Google Maps

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 11 May 2015 - 12:40am
I use Routeyou.com This uses google maps and I find it loads up faster than the main google site and doesn't freeze.

Re: Caution Cyclists Signs

CTC Forum - On the road - 10 May 2015 - 11:56pm
Tonyf33 wrote:They are utterly futile IMHO, here is the ONLY crossing to get to Stevenage from Letchworth ...

I'd give it a wide berth, and go via Willian and Wymondley, or from Willian via the Great North Cycle Route, across the fields towards Graveley.

Re: cycling video collection of ascents:Alps, Pyrenées,Canar

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 10 May 2015 - 11:02pm
Hello !
I'm happy to to present another compilation / best of video about another great bicycletour in the French Alps with several legendary climbs, ascents. The tour happaned in the year 2011.
After the first 2 days (in Italy ) I cycled in France and visited famous, Tour de France cols, climbs, like Bonette (2802 m), Col d'Izoard (2360 m), Alpe d'Huez, Col du Galibier (2645 m), Col de l'Iseran (2770 m), but few hardly known ones, like Parking du Laus, Le Saut, Plan de Lac (2360 m) - one of my favourite. On the climb of Col de la Lombarde I saw chamois, unfortunately only for few seconds, but in the year 2014 on a hardly known italian ascent (will be presented in few weeks time ) offered me the opportunity to record 2 chamoises for video for ca. 1 min long. At La Bonette (2802 m) I got the best amazing weather that I could: sunshine with very small clouds, cumuluses.

Have pleasure with the video and thanks for watching
Gabor

Re: Bus plus a bike?

CTC Forum - On the road - 10 May 2015 - 10:43pm
North America of Lancaster? Ha, I wish that Lancaster was in North America! I guess predictive is getting feisty there TM. Carnforth to Warton though, what, 1 mile? Having not read right through my own link though, the buses I listed could go that way. Nice riding round there though, and getting on train not usually troublesome.
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