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Re: Tour de Isle of Wight - 1-4 May 2015

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 5 May 2015 - 9:32am
Bit early yet for Glanville's - better towards the end of the month. Along the seafront from Ventnor to Bonchurch is usually a good spot to see them.

I love the military road, especially in winter when there is very little traffic on it. It can get a bit busy in summer and motorcyclists tend to confuse it with the Isle of Man TT!

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

CTC Forum - On the road - 5 May 2015 - 9:10am
It's not the nanny state at all. Disagree. You have viewed it in the wrong context. I refer to parents attitude these days. Kids are very wrapped up to protect from hazards that are sometimes more imagined than reality. Every lone male is viewed with suspicion. Granny can't offer a child a sweet anymore. Don't buy them a bike, it's too dangerous. Can't walk alone anywhere.
I don't think most 10+ kids are frightened of riding a bike in traffic. They are just not offered the opportunity. They are however allowed a go in the local park or rail trail, complete with helmet of course. I'm a father and grandfather so I do experience this first hand.

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

CTC Forum - On the road - 5 May 2015 - 8:24am
It's a strange juxtaposition; that the government is unwilling to take real action to protect cyclists and pedestrians, yet promote a risk averse culture that has us banning children from cycling, and cutting down trees in school yards to prevent children climbing them.

Re: Tour de Isle of Wight - 1-4 May 2015

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 5 May 2015 - 7:50am
Sounds like you had a good time Heltor. I loved my bike trip to the IOW though I've never seen that particular butterfly on any of my visits.

Re: Tour de Yorkshire

CTC Forum - Racing - 5 May 2015 - 6:43am
I was a bit disappointed with the coverage on the the telly. I was at the start in Selby and hope to see a good deal of the race when I got home. It seems the world starts & ends in York. I should have watched it on the big screen in Selby & seen the whole race.

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

CTC Forum - On the road - 4 May 2015 - 11:20pm
bigjim wrote:Heh, I've been going to council meetings for more than 20 years now. Neither the elected members nor the officers think cycling is a mode of transport, they think it's a sport or something children do at the park.
I don't think that is quite correct. Many council officers do cycle, probably more than in the private sector and tend to be quite Green thinking. The officers do try express their opinions to Elected Members. I've been there and done that. However many of these are old school thinkers and also see their voters are predominately drivers. So will not upset them.
I think the OP is on a loser in trying to change opinions regarding schools, parents and children cycling. We are becoming ever-more a nanny state. I cycle reuglarly past a High school with 1400 pupils. On a lovely sunny morning last week there was only one bicycle in the high capacity bike sheds at the side of this new modern, expensive school.

It's not the nanny state at all. If anything, it's the reverse. It's the state not taking a strong enough stand against dangerous driving, allowing the free-for-all, 'biggest and heaviest can bully anyone they like' culture that's scaring these kids off the roads.

Re: People who have cycled the Pamir Highway...

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 4 May 2015 - 11:19pm

thank you so much for your precious information. I am planning to cycle along the M41 the next August. I have just few questions. I have a 10°C sleeping bag, is it warm enough for that period?

Kieran2663 wrote:Hi Rogo,

Cycled the Pamir last summer as part of a 12 month tour from Turkey to India and it was without doubt one of the highlights.

Congratulations for your trip, I believe it had been a great experience for you.

The Pamir has 3 commonly cycled routes, the classic M41, the Wakhan & M41 and finally the M41 & Bartang Valley.
The M41 from Kalaikhum towards Khorog is fairly well populated in places, with Kalaikhum being a good places to stock up on essentials such as food and petrol. They are fair sized villages all the way through this bit of the valley with Rushan being the biggest town. The road is fairly busy with local traffic and tourists 4 x 4 between Dushanbe and Khorog and trucks doing trade runs between Tajik& China. There is a strong army presence in the area and you may find them turning up at your camp site to move you on or insist on having an armed guard stay with you over night for your "protection". It is one of the most stunning area of the whole trip.

Just for curiosity: what did they do when they are with you for your overnight "protection"?

Would you suggest to go there without the MSR pump? Despite the Bartang Valley, for how long would you suggest to have food supplies?

Stock up on Somoni's in Dushanbe as they are no banking facilities (ATMs) from Dushnabe to Osh, have US as back up.

How much money did you carry to carry with you from Dushanbe to Osh? Do people accept €?

Re: cycling blog help

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 4 May 2015 - 11:08pm
andrew549 wrote:I'm currently using blogger/blogspot as it free fairly simple to set up and get going, I had a look at wordpress which seems a bit more customisable but it seemed like most things were an extra that you had to pay for as well as some of the features you couldn't seem to do very easily or at all like integrating maps into the post/page.

My fairly basic blog is linked to in my signature to give an idea of what is possible fairly easily.

Thanks Andrew, I went for this one in the end as it seemed simple to set up from my Google account. Now on my signature

Re: Solo Etiquette

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 4 May 2015 - 10:46pm
My full days in Cardiff are August 1st and 2nd. I head back to Chester on the 3rd (3 hr train ride) where I have the 4th in Chester and fly back to the states on the 5th.

Still lots of planning to do in regards to what to do with my days off.

Re: Maps tips

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 4 May 2015 - 10:26pm
Thanks for the suggestions guys. Didn't think about the lack of contours on the atlas'. Going to check out that the OS tour again of Scotland tomorrow I think. Those nicolson's maps look good as well, never heard of those before.

Re: cycling blog help

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 4 May 2015 - 10:08pm
khain wrote:It can depend what you're planning to blog with.

Crazy guy on a bike looks like something from 1997

Keeping a blog on tour can be a bit of a nuisance I've found

The way I look at is, what exposure do you want, if you want your blog to be read by family, friends and a few lurkers then use one of the blogging sites, on Crazyguy I often see bloggers posting links/pumping there blogs.

The good things about site's that have app's, it's easy to add updates, whereas crazyguy is harder, but it's built as a low bandwidth site.

Keeping a Journal/blog is hard work, but for me it's about sharing information, I'm always collecting stuff so providing a journal of my trip is giving back.

Re: Solo Etiquette

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 4 May 2015 - 10:05pm
mcallaghan wrote:St. Fagans has been recommended to me many times over and is certainly on my list. I have a free Saturday and Sunday in Cardiff. I was hoping to catch a Cardiff City pre-season game (looks like this past year they had a game on the same weekend) but am not counting on it. If there is, that will determine which day I go to St. Fagans. I'll be staying across from the Millennium Stadium too, very close to Cardiff Castle, so I imagine I should be able to find some decent food in that area.

Not sure which weekend you have in mind for visiting Cardiff, but later this year it's the Rugby World Cup and warm-up matches are taking place at the Millennium Stadium on Saturday 8 August and Saturday 5 September. Quite colourful and noisy events.....

Re: Ipswich to Southwold advise

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 4 May 2015 - 9:48pm
Assuming you can make your way to Melton (out to Kesgrave then up through Woodbridge), then it's quite nice up through

B1084 to Butley, then towards Tunstall, Blaxhall, Snape (Maltings), Friston, Knodishall, Eastbridge, Westleton, Blythburgh, Southwold

Not got a GPX file for this, as it's a mix of routes I have done, but nice riding in that general area and easy to avoid most of the busier roads.

Hope that helps


Re: Maps tips

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 4 May 2015 - 9:40pm
1:100,000 is probably best, unfortunately I don't think anyone makes maps this scale. Road atlases are ok but lack contours.

Go for Nicolson 1:250,000 Scotland Road maps 2 & 3.


They have contours and should be detailed enough for the areas you're touring in.

OS say Landrangers are for cycle touring but you'd need to carry dozens for a tour of any length.

Re: Solo Etiquette

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 4 May 2015 - 9:22pm
thirdcrank wrote:Vorpal wrote:There can be regional variations, but pubs aren't quite like in the USA. There's usually a 'bar' (or sometimes 'saloon') side, and a restaurant side. Children aren't allowed in the bar side, but it's often cheaper to order a meal, there. On the restaurant side, the menu may be different, and there is a higher expectation that you will pay a tip to your server. On the bar side, you never have to do this, but you can leave a small tip, if you are particularly happy with the food and service.

There's a little informaiton here.... http://www.sirc.org/publik/ptpchap1.html

There's probably enough stuff in that link to start a really long-running thread, but for the benefit of the OP, I'd say that the info about opening times is out-of-date. Putting it at its simplest, boozers can open at any time approved by the local authority. The separation of dining areas is now much less than was once the case, except for places which are very obviously a dining room. ...

One other point I noticed was the issue of paying with plastic. I don't suppose anybody is too keen on accepting a card for a fiver transaction, but I don't think there are many now that won't take plastic, especially for a tab. The only pub I've been in recently which didn't take plastic was the Ship at Low Newton and they put that down to having no phone signal. I fancy they may not take plastic in the Ship in Seahouses but the last time I was in there, there wasn't even a till: the money all went in a drawer.

It must depend on where you go. In Essex and Suffolk the opening hours flexibility seems to have been used mostly to allow night clubs to stay open until 2 am. The pubs I've been in, still have separate rooms for bar/restaurant, and fairly traditional hours. A few are substantially less expensive on the bar side; the other's a bit fancy. Maybe the opening times are dated, but I've been caught out more than once, not being able to get a meal when I wanted one It was few years ago, now, but once when walking long distance, each successive pub I came to from 11 am until 7 pm was closed, until I got to my destination. My tiresome threshold for Boots sandwich+drink+crisps meal deals is quite low. As for paying with cards, yes, it's true that most places take them these days, but there are still some that don't. And there are also a few that always seem to have problems with the card machines, too.

Ipswich to Southwold advise

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 4 May 2015 - 9:06pm
Good evening all

I am planning a one day ride from Ipswich to Southwold for a small group with mixed ability. Want to try and get in as many nice little villages as possible. (with the odd nice little pub )

Ideally it would be good to try and keep as close to the coast as possible

Just wondering if anyone had any routes they had used before.

Thanks for your time


Re: Solo Etiquette

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 4 May 2015 - 8:19pm
al_yrpal wrote:If you have a bit of time in Cardiff dont miss the Welsh Folk Museum at St Fagans http://www.museumwales.ac.uk/stfagans/, a remarkable institution, particularly the many buildings. Worth a whole day or more. Pontypridd Market on a Wednesday or Saturday morning will give you a real feeling of the valleys. Have fun, but avoid lavabread.


+1 for this. One of the best places of this 'category' I've been to on 4 continents.

As far as solo-eating: I'm lucky in that I'm pretty gregarious so if I 'need' the company I can dip in or if I feel like being solitary, I can do this too. I quite enjoy either.
The only skill I haven't honed yet is how to stop the local regular/drunks giving me free life-coaching sessions! Why me? Reason no. 41 why I NEVER sit at the bar. It happens all around the World. I am a nutter-magnet. It's landed me with free drinks and conversation, but it's also landed me in trouble too![emoji55]

Re: cycling blog help

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 4 May 2015 - 7:01pm
It can depend what you're planning to blog with.

Wordpress has an app which works pretty well on most smartphones. You can also post by email, though this isn't too easy to set up.

Blogger is a bit easier to customise the look and feel of but Wordpress has more functionality and flexibility.

Crazy guy on a bike looks like something from 1997 (though that might not be a bad thing on tour) and the ads annoy me. Travellers Point is pretty good though I don't know how mobile-friendly it is. Using an existing site means you'll get more page views but there'll be ads on the site.

Keeping a blog on tour can be a bit of a nuisance I've found, particularly if you use a dedicated camera. If you've got a good smartphone and take photos on that the Wordpress app shouldn't be too much hassle.

Re: Maps tips

CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition - 4 May 2015 - 6:49pm
Don't go buying a Philips Navigator just for that area!!! I have one you can have the pages from. If you pm me with your address, I'll send them 1st class. I already have the stamps so no cost to me whatsoever.

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

CTC Forum - On the road - 4 May 2015 - 6:44pm
It depends on where one lives.
My fiancée's eldest son's school has quite a few kids who cycle to and from there. I see at least 10-15 any weekday passing us. Including a few who carry their friends to home on the handlebars A few of the teachers also cycle to work.
It's a sad state of affairs when the roads are so bad that kids are scared to cycle on them. I never had that fear when I was a kid. I know my daughters are afraid. The roads are worse than ever these days.
I'm sure you'll do what's best for you and your children but I'm sure we all agree, their happiness is what's most important.
I'm not in your situation and it's entirely possible my own views might well change if I were, but if I was, I might consider keeping the cycling as an activity for the weekend for the short term until their confidence grows enough to cycle the school run again in future.
I hope you find a solution that you are all happy with
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