View from Oban Bothy

View from Oban Bothy
Showing posts with label LETIMP. Show all posts
Showing posts with label LETIMP. Show all posts

Sunday, 27 March 2016

Tuesday 15th March, Ironbridge to High Offley

….but not one Wetherspoons

A tough previous day called for a relatively short and easy day, giving my little legs a chance to recover. The ride from Tewkesbury to Ironbridge had been quite lovely – Kidderminster, Worcester, the Severn Valley and Bridgnorth all deserved far more time than I afforded them. The next time I take that route it will be in reverse, ie heading north to south, and at a much more leisurely pace.

My planned destination for tonight was to be High Offley, near Woodseaves – which is close to Eccleshall in Staffordshire. It’s main claim to fame is The Anchor Inn, a wonderful gem of a pub on the Shropshire Union Canal. I’ve been visiting this pub and camping behind it since 1975. I was looking forward to another overnight stop there.

Back to Ironbridge. I’d had a small dorm to myself in the YHA so I had a quiet and restful night, no snorers…..apart from me maybe.

P1060299 - Copy

The view from my hostel dorm window

P1060301 - Copy

Ironbridge YHA

After an enormous YHA breakfast I spent a bit of time wandering up Ironbridge Gorge, it had been nearly 30 years since the last time I’d visited the area.

P1060302 - Copy

P1060303 - Copy

On the Iron Bridge

P1060304 - Copy

Up the Severn Valley

P1060305 - Copy

The Iron Bridge

Leaving Ironbridge was going to be hard, not just because it’s a lovely place, but because of Blists Hill, probably the steepest hill I’ve ever tried to cycle up. It ended up being yet another hill the was too steep for me to pedal up so another push was called for. The sun was shining and there was no breeze, I was soon wet through with sweat.

The plan was to cycle through Telford and then enjoy a gentle trundle up the quite lanes of Shropshire and Staffordshire in good time to enjoy a lunchtime beer or two at the Anchor. But I’d underestimated Telford. It was quite the most difficult place to cycle through: poor road surfaces and few roadsigns – hardly any aimed at cyclists. In fact the roadsigns that I came across just wanted to funnel me on to major dual carriageways.

Eventually I made it through Telford and out of the other side – back on country lanes. Next destination of the day was to be Newport in Shropshire, a fine little market town. The sun disappeared behind cloud and the temperature dropped considerably, another layer was needed – as were warm gloves.What a change in just a short time.

P1060306 - Copy

Newport’s Ballroom

P1060307 - Copy

St Nicholas Church on Newport High Street

P1060308 - Copy

P1060309 - Copy

In no time at all I arrived at High Offley but it just seemed far too early to end the day there, it was too cold to enjoy a beer anyway.

So I carried on to Stoke-on-Trent, like you do….

Saturday, 19 March 2016

LETIMP: more photos

…and a bit out of order: Penzance to Bridgewater

P1060224 - Copy

Mount’s Bay & Penzance

P1060229 - Copy

St Michael’s Mount

P1060233 - Copy

Er…Redruth

P1060235 - Copy

P1060236 - Copy

Dozmary Pool sunset

P1060241 - Copy

Dozmary Pool sunrise

Dozmary Pool

P1060243 - Copy

Plunger A10 outfit

P1060244 - Copy

Welcome to Devon

image

River Tamar

Crediton

Cadbury

Cadbury Cross

Taunton

image

image

Brent Knoll, Bridgewater

Wednesday, 9 March 2016

LEJOG, Oh the wind and rain

P1060215 - CopyP1060203 - Copy

P1060205 - Copy

P1060213 - CopyP1060218 - Copy

P1060223 - Copy

P1060222 - Copy

P1060221 - Copy

 

It was definitely a good move to stay at Penzance YHA last night. This morning the roads were littered with bits of tree and other detritus. Aktos are very good but last night's storms would certainly have tested it's mettle.

At 10am the winds were still far too strong to cycle, forget about cycling safely. So strong were the gusts that it was difficult to stand at times.

I went with Plan B: bus to Lands End and walk back to Penzance. To avoid camera shake from the wind (did I mention the strong wind?) I took photographs with my camera set to 'Sports Mode' ie: a fast shutter speed.

At Lands End the sea was quite spectacular, waves were crashing like nobody's business. A light aircraft flew over, it seemed to be almost travelling sideways - I'm rather pleased that I wasn't on board.

There were a few people tottering around Lands End itself but nobody was following the SWCP, opting instead for the safer inland footpaths and roads.

I was keen to visit the Telegraph Museum at Porthcurno, I quite fancied a play with their radio station - although I hadn't thought to bring my Amateur Radio Licence with me.....doh.

Unfortunately the museum was closed, shut, and not open either. That was the end of that then.

Never mind, a pint in the pub opposite would be reasonable consolation... well it would have been had it been open. Ho hum.

The beach at Porthcurno was quite beautiful, bathed in sunshine but whipped by an icy gale....there's that wind again.

The rest of the walk back was unremarkable, mainly because I was following minor roads. I've walked the coastal path before and that would have been a far more attractive proposition - had it not been for the wind.

I arrived back in Penzance around mid afternoon (I'd forgotten how lumpy Cornwall was) and still blowing an ice-cold hoolie.

Plan B rev1.0: head to Wetherspoon's, drink coffee and eat cake (twurly for a beer, even for me) and review my position.

The review resulted in Plan B rev1.1: stay another night in Penzance and head off early in the morning. I'm behind schedule but it matters not - as long as I'm home in good time to play a ceilidh on 19th March.

So that's it, 10 miles covered and around 40 miles behind schedule - but plenty of opportunity to catch up.

There are some rather poor photographs included - apart from a close-up of Longships Lighthouse, a mile or so off Lands End. That photograph came from Geograph, via Wikipedia.

Tuesday, 8 March 2016

LEJOG, In the beginning....

At Navigation Road Station, Timperley

A long day involving a bit of cycling and lots of trains (4) saw my arrival in Penzance at 18.04 precisely.

This evening's Plan was to cycle to Lands End and stealth camp but the weather has worsened..... and it's going to get worsener still overnight, with 55-60mph winds and heavy rain forecast.

Quincyquontly I've booked into Penzance YHA for the night. The forecast isn't brilliant for tomorrow so Plan B is to go to Lands End by bus and walk back to the hostel, it's only around 10 miles so I should be back at the hostel by around 1pm. I'll jump back on the bike and pedal off into the East.

Being as wot the wind will be from the West, and that I'll be travelling East I should be able to get a good few miles in before tea-time.... I might be a bit soggy and damp though.

I was going to hit the local Wetherspoons but I'll try to support the YHA by drinking some of their beers. The YHA is a charity after all, and charities should be supported.