Sunday, 1 November 2015

Bikes and boats// Bournemouth to Portsmouth

Last weekend I thought I’d take advantage of the extra hour-long weekend by taking my brother on a cycling adventure around the New Forest and South Downs. All I had to do was remember to stay upwind of his farts.

We got the train from Waterloo to Bournemouth cycled along the coast, put our bikes on the Mudeford Ferry fuelled up on fish and chips and headed for the New Forest.

"The cost of a single one way fare on the Mudeford Ferry (from Mudeford Quay to Mudeford Sandbank) is £1.50 and 70p for children. Dogs, cats and parrots FREE. Large items like Sailboards, Kitchen Sink and excess baggage: One Adult Fare. We welcome bicycles. Adult bicycle £1.50 Child bicycle 70p." 
Look! A unicorn.
New Forest was deserted and we got epically rained on. It looked magical. We cycled through Lyndhurst in the middle then headed across to Hythe and got another ferry, the Hythe Ferry.

We rode alongside the world’s oldest pier train along the slippery wooden planks, many of which have been sponsored so contain beautiful dedications. FYI, the Titanic’s berth is to the North East of Hythe Pier.

My brother left his gloves on the ferry so had to wear the emergency Hello Kitty gloves of shame. They never get lost.

We stayed the night with family near Southampton and were well fed and looked after before we set off for the South Downs the next morning, following our extra hour of sleep. That should happen every weekend you go cycling.

We cycled around West and East Meon, got a bit lost, found the World’s End saw some lovely country lanes before we headed to Portsmouth and got the train back to London.

I’ve been mainly cycling solo since my JOGLE adventure and cycling with a buddy is a completely different deal. We got lost a few times because when you are both navigating you don’t give it your full attention, you half rely on the other person. Not that I ever do a major amount of planning, but I do check if I’m on the right track more if I’m on my own. Getting lost with someone is not as scary as getting lost on our own.

I've learnt not to worry about getting lost. cycling in the UK, you are never far from the right path and getting lost is when you end up having real adventures. It's where the great stories come from.

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