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Re: My worst tour, and why..

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 26 November 2014 - 11:25am
Don't think I've ever had a real bad tour, but I clearly remember my worst day on tour and it was in the UK. Crossing the fens, into a headwind, drizzling all day. For the most part the satnav showed a dead straight featureless line. I can remember feeling glad when I saw a leylandii hedge because a) shelter and b)it was something to look at that wasn't cabbage shaped.

Re: I Hate Virgin Trains

CTC Forum - On the road - 26 November 2014 - 11:22am
tyreon wrote:Why are we wanting to scar the country?

We do it with motorways why not a rail line? I think it will be the best long term investment the country has made in a long time.

Re: Tanker lorry, spot on driving

CTC Forum - On the road - 26 November 2014 - 10:25am
OTOH, I had a bus driver yesterday who started encroaching on my (already narrow) cycle lane, so I banged on the doors to alert him. His hand signals in response indicated that he didn't understand the issue.

Bristol to Bath Railway Path - Closed until March 2015

CTC Forum - On the road - 26 November 2014 - 10:13am
If you use this regularly we got some bad news this morning with regards the closure that was supposed to have been lifted next week.

We asked the council if the works were going to schedule and got the following reply.

I met with the site manager for the Teewell Hill works on Friday and we discussed how the project was going and when we will be able to reopen the railway path.

Unfortunately, it looks like we will not be able to reopen the railway path until March 2015.

This is due to the temporary support works to the cutting slopes being more complex than we had originally planned. The overall duration of the project has not changed but the length of the time the railway path has to be closed has extended so that we can safely carry out the works.

I apologise for any inconvenience this causes you.


Mike Johnson
Senior Engineer - Structures

Re: Tanker lorry, spot on driving

CTC Forum - On the road - 26 November 2014 - 9:56am
That's not so remarkable IMO,I find HGV drivers do that sort of thing on a regular basis.
The true pro driver IMO realises the hazard/obstruction/problem,etc,well in advance and the vast majority aren't ego tripping just doing their job and generally doing it well as in this case.
They realise there's nothing to gain from bullying and threatening other road uses with their bulk,occasionally I get the odd one who's an idiot but find their driving for the most part driving exemplary

Re: I Hate Virgin Trains

CTC Forum - On the road - 26 November 2014 - 9:55am
tyreon wrote:Have we discussed HS2 yet?
Is 29 pages enough? viewtopic.php?f=6&t=47854
Have I managed to shut the stable lid before the can of worms bolted?

Re: Using cycle paths

CTC Forum - On the road - 26 November 2014 - 9:54am
I've had a QR Skewer snapped by the barriers on one path - I was going uphill, through a chicane, and didn't go wide enough (already went off the path) to get through the chicane cleanly and the corner of the trailer just caught on one of the barriers. The shock load was enough to snap the QR skewer and remove the skewer and hitch from the trike.

Had I just gone off road there is nothing at all to prevent just going round the fence, since it only exists on the path itself. Most of the cyclists I see simply go round the end (most are on MTB style bikes) and I've never seen any motorised abuse of the facility (which has no such barrier at the other end, and plenty of "fun" fields etc in the middle)

The barriers are a menace to some of those they aim to protect, prevent some of those accessing the facility at all and manifestly don't prevent the abuse of facilities which should be policed. If there is a speeding problem on a road we don't close it (although that's a great plan), we police the speed. If there is an HGV problem on an inappropriately small road we put up signs warning the drivers.

Antisocial behaviour from a minority shouldn't result in an antisocial response from authority.

Re: Is it time for radicalism?

CTC Forum - On the road - 26 November 2014 - 9:28am
Perhaps we should be building new roads? Perhaps we should in fact be embarking upon the biggest road building programme since the motorways?

How will that 'solve' the issue? By making them cycleways (the cycle equivalent of the motorway).

In the North East at least we've got masses of ex-railway alignments which can be used. But even those which can be cycled are usually a poor rocky surface unsuitable for anything other than a MTB, especially this time of year. Tarmac the lot of them, to a good standard, not forgetting actually maintaining them too.

The 'road' below is about as wide as a single track road but is easily wide enough for two way cycling with room to spare.

Re: I Hate Virgin Trains

CTC Forum - On the road - 26 November 2014 - 9:25am
Have we discussed HS2 yet?

I hate HS2. Its going to be a waste of b38462ing money.

Its gonna ruin parts of rural England,dicing up land that's arable,scenic,bicycle/walking friendly country,making this increasingly urbanised country even more diced and sliced by infrastructure. From the railway will come depots,following the depots,powerlines,following the powerlines,inbuilding: you get the picture. By normal(but perverse?) reasoning I shouldn't really care: it's going through toff country the track cuts(and hasn't Clarkson got a place down there. That's one good reason to have it built!)But in this small,and increasingly overcrowded island,I like to see some vestiges of green left: it makes me feel good.

What's with the saved journey time?? Birmingham - London. 20 minutes!! For x billions!! And most business people are working on phones and computers on the train...so no work time lost. Why are we wanting to scar the country?

I read something about more people wanting to travel more frequently on trains. Demand up,up,up. But then someone suggested having longer trains...then building longer platforms to accommodate the trains. Wotstheargumentagainstthis! Where's Beppoo Grillo when you need him?

Re: My worst tour, and why..

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 26 November 2014 - 8:45am
foxyrider wrote:Never had anything quite so disasterous as those examples!

My worst was a Tirol tour in 2011 with lots of wet days.

Day 1 torrential rain to St Gallen, day 2 woke floating after more overnight rain, day3 damp start then more distance than i expected, day 5 damp turning to torrential, day 6 foggy and damp before later light rain, repeat for day 8 with overnight torrential rain at Berchtesgaden, day 9 damp with low cloud ending with a puncture caused by a sharp stone on the road. Phew, day 10 light rain on and off all day, day 11 low cloud and rain until mid afternoon so cancelled assault on the Gross Gloeckner road, day 13 (shoulda known better!) abortive high pass crossing resulting in three day diversion from planned route, more damp in afternoon. Day 14 wet afternoon and into evening at Solden, river close to overflow, day 15 rain and low cloud over Silvretta ending with a 2km 20% climb to campsite, day 16 ended with 5km climb to campsite before more rain, day 17 wet most of the day over three passes to Zurich then the final morning it chucked it down getting back to the airport. Not only that but my cash card wouldnt work so for the middle week i was severely at a financial disadvantage! This was in August!

Despite all of the damp i had a great trip, the dry days were brilliant, the tent kept me dry even when it was floating! I did complete 15 pass crossings and clocked up @ 1200km.

As I read this, I was certain you were going to be kidnapped by bandidos!

Re: Amsterdam to the Battlefields of France/Belgium

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 26 November 2014 - 7:19am
Thanks for your reply and the link to your tour..I'm enjoying the read..We have now booked the ferry

Re: My worst tour, and why..

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 25 November 2014 - 11:43pm
Tigerbiten wrote:Dropping of the top of Beachy Head:

Must have been a bad tour

Re: Using cycle paths

CTC Forum - On the road - 25 November 2014 - 11:30pm
Chop the legs off the barriers, chop the legs off any motorcyclists causing a nuisance. Sorted. I'm fed up of having my life affected by filthy lowlife screbs. I think the police around here do have scramblers for chasing yobs on, I think probably for land near the Manchester Ship Canal, soon to be Port Salford.
I once trapped my sons arm in a barrier whilst he was in a child seat on the back and I was trying to negotiate my way through it, he stuck his arm out whilst I was looking at the bike, trapping his arm between his seat and the upright of the fencing, luckily it was only gently but it could have been much worse, barriers where I have to get off and lift or manoeuvre the bike whilst I have a child in a child seat are dangerous too, as the balance of the bike is wrong and I have less control of it if I'm not sat on it, getting him off and on at each barrier would be far too much of a hassle and dangerous too.

Tanker lorry, spot on driving

CTC Forum - On the road - 25 November 2014 - 11:26pm
Coming home from Letchworth town centre there is a longish sweeping 40mph road that leads directly onto the A1 & A505 Cambridge route, it's the main road for a large portion of traffic from North Herts and beyond so gets very busy. 3/4 along there is a pedestrian refuge that was installed a few years back (which is barely ever used as there are two crossings and an underpass close by), it had no safety assessment done beforehand yet it significantly narrows the road enough that a car & cyclist cannot pass together safely despite the road being much wider than most.
https://www.google.co.uk/maps/@51.97156 ... rU0gmA!2e0

Anyhow, I normally adopt a very central position well before the refuge, I over the shoulder check and hold my position, saw a large tanker behind me this time and expecting it to rumble right up behind me as most vehicles do but no, it didn't accelerate to close the distance down and held a nice 30-40m gap all the way to the give way at the elongated roundabout.
By the time he caught me i was turning off left so stuck a big thumbs up as he was passing.

it was so nice to be able to go through without worrying whether someone was going to try squeeze me out or come bombing up to the back of me as is the case quite often.
Whoever you were mate, cheers, exemplary driving, just wish there were more of you.

Re: Eurovelo 7 South to North?

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 25 November 2014 - 11:22pm
Many thanks for the replies. We'll certainly follow up all the links and it's good to know that the "Ciclopista Del Sole" does cover part of the route south of Rome - we'd thought it started in Rome.

Malta sounds as bad as we feared but we'd want to do it for the sake of completeness. I wonder if Rob or anyone else could tell us whether it would be feasible to cycle from south to north super early in the morning before the traffic gets going and stand a reasonable chance of surviving unscathed?

Re: My worst tour, and why..

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 25 November 2014 - 11:18pm
whoof wrote:I've been thinking about this for a day or so and I can't think of a 'bad' tour.
I think you've got it right, whoof. The miserable weather, impassible barricades, wretched meals, and sagging mattresses over the pub are all horrible at the time … but they make the best stories when it's all over, and often it is the moments just before and just after the worst weather that results in the best photographs.

Re: Need advice on a bike tour of Scotland

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 25 November 2014 - 9:57pm
radomir: I read your post at the same time as I was looking at car insurance. That was a mistake and I apologise for having read your post not in the way that it was intended to be.

I hope you have a great trip.

Re: Using cycle paths

CTC Forum - On the road - 25 November 2014 - 8:44pm
meic wrote:I have seen barriers "removed" ...

Since removed more formally.

Shornemead Crossing NS317.jpg
That was a substantial metal framed barrier, in place for some years until it was attacked in September 2013 with an angle grinder. It took twelve months for the puny replacement to arrive, it hasn't lasted long.

The section of path through a SSSI opened up by the barrier's removal suffers motorcycle abuse. Such abuse also took place before but I have no doubt that it's absence makes it easier.

Vorpal's right though, that's a social issue and an enforcement issue.

Re: Need advice on a bike tour of Scotland

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 25 November 2014 - 8:31pm
One way to save a lot of distance cycling and hills is to get an evening ferry from Ullapool to Stornoway, cycle down the Heb's to Lochmaddy and get the ferry back to Skye.
Stornoway to Lochmaddy is roughly two 50km days and around 1,000 meters climbing in total.
You still have a big pull up just before Tarbet, just not as big as Bealach na Ba.
Ullapool to Uig on staying the road via Bealach na Ba is 330 km and 5,000 meters climbing ........

So unless you do get hit by a SW gale and/or do want to go over Bealach na Ba then that may be a better option.

Re: Using cycle paths

CTC Forum - On the road - 25 November 2014 - 8:21pm
I really like some cycle paths. My regular commute to work (5.5miles) includes about 1.5 miles of cycle path which follows an old railway line, then cuts across fields. Well away from roads for most of the distance. Smooth tarmac too. I see all manner of wildlife: rabbits, mice/voles, deer, owls, raptors, fox, and (once) a badger. It is quiet, and the views are good. Favourite time of year is cycling at dawn or dusk.
I don't mind motorists sharing my roads sometimes - so long as they are careful and courteous- but I'm so pleased that they keep off my cycle track.
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