Author Topic: Hummers Lumpy End2End - Part 3  (Read 4966 times)

Hummers

  • It is all about the taste.
Hummers Lumpy End2End - Part 3
« on: September 27, 2013, 08:48:09 am »
    Epilogue – The Trip Back Home

    OK, not exactly ‘Back Home’ but back to London where I was working on the Monday morning. I decided to put this in for anyone else considering how to get home from Wick/JoG;  for information rather than a definitive guide.
    In essence:

    • Wick to Inverness is about 100 miles of not particularly fine cycling, mostly on one busy road (the A9) so unless you leave early, be prepared for traffic.
    • The train from Wick takes 4 hours to get to Inverness and leaves around 11am on a Sunday
    • Unless you have booked, trains from Wick may not have a bike space for you and even if you have booked it, there may still not space for a bike
    • Neither the Wick or Inverness trains (officially) accept tandems and Inverness train spaces are limited to (I think) three spaces
    • There is a coach from Wick to Inverness that leaves earlier (09:50 on a Sunday) and only takes 3 hours but they won’t take bikes unless they are dismantled and wrapped/boxed up.
    • There is a ‘sherpa’ private mini bus service if you want to get back from JoG to Inverness but it is only reasonably cost effective if there is a group of you (they were going to charge me £180!!!)
    • There are two sleeper services from Inverness on the Sunday, one earlier (18:00ish) and the other at 20:20. The latter gets into London Euston at 08:40 on the Monday morning and was OK but it is wise to book in advance and very wise to book a bike space otherwise you will have to dismantle your bike and box it up to get it on the train.

    Regarding the ‘box your bike up’, I went for the ‘or wrap it up in cling film’ option (60m box of the stuff sourced from the Co-Op down the road in Wick) and here is one I prepared earlier…



    Other Lessons Learnt

    This is a cracking ride but whatever you heard, the climbing is definitely not all over by time you leave the WestcountryI thought I would jot down some other things that others might find useful:

    • The north west and north coast of Scotland is really beautiful, well worth the visit and was consistently the best part of the trip
    • There are more places to stay then a cursory Google search would suggest along the way - especially in Scotland
    • I stayed in some great places and I can forward the details on to you but I suspect there are better places if you can find someone in the know
    • If you have planned accommodation in advance, ensure you know exactly where it is you are staying for the night in terms of the route to get there.
    • If possible, choose a route that is easy to follow towards the end of the day over one that meanders through the back of beyond unless you have a very good GPS and track or know the area.
    • Aim to leave at 6am and try to keep to a schedule based on an overall average speed of around 15-20kmh
    • Do not faff about on the ride as you will pay for it later
    • AA maps are not much good where there are a lot of minor roads - particularly in Wales and built up areas. If I were to do this ride again, I would be tempted to buy a GPS.
    • Do not underestimate the wearying aspect of this ride. You may become slower and hills will seem harder as the ride progresses.
    • At times (especially after day 4), I wish I had fitted a triple but doubt it would have made that much difference
    • Use Google (walk) to plan your route submission
    • It gets cold up north!
    • Be prepared to strip down your bike if you are leaving from Wick on the train or coach and either box it up, wrap it in cling film or black bin bags.
    • The coach is faster than the train from Wick to Inverness
    • Book your ticket on in Inverness very early in the planning and book a bike place
    • 250k-280k a day is doable if you can keep a reasonable average pace of 15-20km/h
    • Travelodge accommodation can make financial sense - especially if en route and there are two/three of you
    • B&Bs can be found but a room shared can be twice the price of a hostel bed
    • Hostels tend to have group rooms which can make sense for a group of you

    [/list]
    That's all for now folks.  If you fancy a crack at this Audax, the details are on the AUK website, on the Permanents page HERE.

    H

    Re: Hummers Lumpy End2End - Part 3
    « Reply #1 on: September 27, 2013, 08:29:46 pm »
    Wow. Excellent stuff and many congrats. Not sure about evens though!
    Get a bicycle. You will never regret it, if you live- Mark Twain

    Charlie Boy

    • Dreams in kilometers
    Re: Hummers Lumpy End2End - Part 3
    « Reply #2 on: September 27, 2013, 09:46:35 pm »
    Great read. Congratulations.
    Mojo is being awakened.

    Re: Hummers Lumpy End2End - Part 3
    « Reply #3 on: September 28, 2013, 06:48:58 pm »
    Mark, well done and thanks for all the great descriptions.  I've never done LEJOG, or anything much, really, but we touch base a couple of times in your 2nd report:  I've done the Pass Of The Cattle to Applecross, nearly 40 years ago on a big BSA 650 with a double adult Busmar sidecar, which took some hauling round the adverse cambers!  Much more recently, maybe two years ago,I  had a chat with a nice chap in the Country Kitchen, a famous cyclists' cafe in Waddington, near Clitheroe.  He turned out to be Rod Goodfellow.  He was home for a holiday and I think he said he lives in France (or somewhere sur le continent) most of the time now.

    Thanks again - a great ride and a great write-up.  Oh, I also recognised the black dog!

    Peter

    Hummers

    • It is all about the taste.
    Re: Hummers Lumpy End2End - Part 3
    « Reply #4 on: September 28, 2013, 07:07:32 pm »
    Mark, well done and thanks for all the great descriptions.  I've never done LEJOG, or anything much, really, but we touch base a couple of times in your 2nd report:  I've done the Pass Of The Cattle to Applecross, nearly 40 years ago on a big BSA 650 with a double adult Busmar sidecar, which took some hauling round the adverse cambers!  Much more recently, maybe two years ago,I  had a chat with a nice chap in the Country Kitchen, a famous cyclists' cafe in Waddington, near Clitheroe.  He turned out to be Rod Goodfellow.  He was home for a holiday and I think he said he lives in France (or somewhere sur le continent) most of the time now.

    Thanks again - a great ride and a great write-up.  Oh, I also recognised the black dog!

    Peter

     :thumbsup:

    Cheers Peter.

    I get the impression Rod gets about and is also a member of this forum.

    H

    shyumu

    • Paying my TV license by cheque since 1993
      • Balancing on Two Wheels
    Re: Hummers Lumpy End2End - Part 3
    « Reply #5 on: September 30, 2013, 06:57:06 pm »
    Brilliant story Hummers.  You captured the rollercoasters of the roads and emotions and conveyed them really well.  I loved that SYHA in Tongue when I stayed there in 2009.  My wife and I enjoyed their hospitality and it seemed to be much better quality than some I've had the misfortune to stay in back in England.
    a journal of bicycle rides I have enjoyed:

    http://balancingontwowheels.blogspot.co.uk/

    Re: Hummers Lumpy End2End - Part 3
    « Reply #6 on: October 01, 2013, 11:52:16 pm »
    Good show that man H  :thumbsup:  I look forward to hearing the unprintable bits next time SW London Chapter meets for re-hydration.  A suitable time might be when Phixie has fully recovered from his recently sustained injuries, as I gather that he'd like to join us.

    Re: Hummers Lumpy End2End - Part 3
    « Reply #7 on: October 02, 2013, 12:34:08 am »
    By the way, I don't want to belittle your magnificent achievement H, but did you hear about this guy currently swimming LeJoG?

    Hummers

    • It is all about the taste.
    Re: Hummers Lumpy End2End - Part 3
    « Reply #8 on: October 02, 2013, 08:18:42 am »
    Brilliant story Hummers.  You captured the rollercoasters of the roads and emotions and conveyed them really well.  I loved that SYHA in Tongue when I stayed there in 2009.  My wife and I enjoyed their hospitality and it seemed to be much better quality than some I've had the misfortune to stay in back in England.

    I wonder if the same people are still the wardens there  - it sounds like they were for you. It was a married couple and the husband was the local doctor and like you, they restored my faith in Youth hostels after a pretty soulless stop over in Carbisdale Castle (and others).

    By the way, I don't want to belittle your magnificent achievement H, but did you hear about this guy currently swimming LeJoG?

    On a bike?

    No?

    Pah!!!

    On the beer front, indeed we must meet again my friend. Perhaps nearer Christmas to share some seasonal good cheer beer  :P

    H

    Mike Conway

    • Wheel builder and general bike rider
      • 23mm-wheels
    Re: Hummers Lumpy End2End - Part 3
    « Reply #9 on: October 30, 2013, 09:45:10 pm »
    Thanks Hummers, a very inspiring read.

    jogler

    • mojo operandi
    Re: Hummers Lumpy End2End - Part 3
    « Reply #10 on: February 09, 2014, 12:36:10 pm »
    Absolutely excellent report which I REALLY enjoyed reading. :thumbsup:

    I'm intrigued about the "wow look at that" thing at JoG..It was still an enema-site when I was last there in 2009.
    Perhaps I could revisit?Include it in some type of bike ride? ;)

    Hummers

    • It is all about the taste.
    Re: Hummers Lumpy End2End - Part 3
    « Reply #11 on: February 11, 2014, 08:41:50 am »
    Absolutely excellent report which I REALLY enjoyed reading. :thumbsup:

    I'm intrigued about the "wow look at that" thing at JoG..It was still an enema-site when I was last there in 2009.
    Perhaps I could revisit?Include it in some type of bike ride? ;)

    It was dark and I was slightly off-key due to no food having been eaten for about 100 miles  :facepalm:

    Perhaps that is the best time to visit  ;D

    H

    Re: Hummers Lumpy End2End - Part 3
    « Reply #12 on: February 14, 2014, 11:27:22 am »
    I read every word of the article in Arrive, and came to the conclusion that only experienced riders could truly appreciate the daily distances, the amount of climbing, the physical and mental fatigue and resultant mind-numbing confusion.

    A proper Quixotic odyssey...it's what life is about
    #makewattsnotwar

    Re: Hummers Lumpy End2End - Part 3
    « Reply #13 on: February 15, 2014, 09:35:05 am »
    I read every word of the article in Arrive, and came to the conclusion that only experienced riders could truly appreciate the daily distances, the amount of climbing, the physical and mental fatigue and resultant mind-numbing confusion.

    A proper Quixotic odyssey...it's what life is about

    Likewise - and I'd agree with that whole-heartedly. Thanks for giving us a really enjoyable read in Arrivee (read aloud to the Lardy family - enjoyed by all) - and b****y well done for such an achievement.
    (Strangely, I've been inspired to have a look your website and find out more ...hmmm, and only three quid for a trip to Scotland ...).

    Hummers

    • It is all about the taste.
    Re: Hummers Lumpy End2End - Part 3
    « Reply #14 on: February 15, 2014, 12:35:30 pm »
    Thanks for the feedback gents  :thumbsup:

    H


    Re: Hummers Lumpy End2End - Part 3
    « Reply #15 on: February 18, 2014, 06:28:45 pm »
    Cor. Admittedly, it was back when the very idea of clocking 200km in a day would seem purely insane, but we found it hard enough going in 2 weeks and riding up as few hills as we could. Nice one.

    Hummers

    • It is all about the taste.
    Re: Hummers Lumpy End2End - Part 3
    « Reply #16 on: February 19, 2014, 08:12:15 am »
    Horses for courses m'dear!  :thumbsup:

    We rode a lumpy version 10 year before over 15 days and had as much enjoyment. That is what it is about, I reckon.

    H

    Martin 14

    • People too weak to follow their own dreams, will a
    Re: Hummers Lumpy End2End - Part 3
    « Reply #17 on: March 22, 2015, 10:02:31 pm »
    Great read! :)
    People too weak to follow their own dreams, will always find a way to discourage yours

    Hummers

    • It is all about the taste.
    Re: Hummers Lumpy End2End - Part 3
    « Reply #18 on: May 15, 2015, 04:03:14 am »
    It is interesting to read this again.

    18 months on, a partially aborted 2014 in terms of planned rides and a locked-down 2015 domestically have meant no Wessex SR, me being a stone heavier (which makes a BIG difference on this sort of ride) and a realisation that this is a tough undertaking.

    Good luck to anyone who attempts it  :thumbsup:

    H

    Phil W

    Re: Hummers Lumpy End2End - Part 3
    « Reply #19 on: June 21, 2015, 11:03:59 pm »
    Just read this again. Inspiring reading.  I may be tempted to attempt next year if my niece can't join me on a planned lejog.   What is the success rate on this lumpy end to end so far?  I see your website now says its a prescribed route. Does that mean you have to stick to the route in the gpx?  I'm going to look at it over next few days.

    Hummers

    • It is all about the taste.
    Re: Hummers Lumpy End2End - Part 3
    « Reply #20 on: July 20, 2015, 08:32:41 am »
    Just seen the post from Phil W....

    I am the only rider out of 7 to complete the route to date.

    There is a GPX for the route and it is quite strict for the AAA points  but email me if you want to discuss options.

    H

    Re: Hummers Lumpy End2End - Part 3
    « Reply #21 on: June 09, 2018, 08:11:14 am »
    Hi,

    Great write up - is the statistic for finishers still the same or has there been a change?

    Geoff