The purpose of the trip was a weekend with family in Tavistock and the target was to arrive in time for the wine and curry feast planned for Friday night. I had decided to use the Jamis Aurora for the ride, a wise choice in that the Aurora is a lightweight steel framed tourer but not so wise in that this was a new bike that I hadn't previously taken further than 30 miles. It was prepped for the ride with dyno hub wheel and lighting from my workaday bike and a single small rear pannier for tools and food. I set off at 17:50 on Thursday night and wanting to get away to a good start I braved the A4 through Reading towards Woolhampton where I would take up the B and C roads that would form the rest of the route. The weather was not ideal, heavy rain and a 10 – 15 mph headwind, but the hedgerows and trees lining the minor roads did provide some protection from the worst of it. It was properly dark at 22:00 when I reached my first planned fuel stop which was fish and chips at Pewsey. After this 30 minute meal break in Pewsey's well appointed bus shelter I was away into the darkness heading for my next rest stop at Glastonbury.
|Bus Shelter at Pewsey © Copyright Chris Talbot|
|Luckily there was a bridge!|
By this stage I was getting a little tired and decided to skip my planned 3rd fuel stop at Tesco’s in Cullompton and press on to Bradninch and refuel with my own supplies in the delightful thatched bus shelter at Bradninch.
|Bradninch Bus Shelter © Copyright Sarah Smith|
During the ride I came to appreciate the availability of bus shelters; for sure cafes and coffee bars are mostly a more enticing proposition, however they are rare on back roads and after for cycling in the rain for over 15 hours a bedraggled and dirt caked cyclist is perhaps not the most favoured of clientele. The bus stop at Shobrooke in Devon was a superbly appointed example and it was a hard not to get ensconced for a "power nap".
|Shobrooke Bus Shelter © Copyright BazzaDarambler|
|Final Destination! Westbridge Cottages - Tavistock|
Apologies for the lack of my own pictures in this post but for the most part it was dark and raining so many thanks to the bus shelter snappers as credited!