Land’s End, England to John O’Groats, Scotland
Last night our group of five tired riders stayed in a renovated Benedictine Abbey in Tavistock, Cornwall, built in the 10th century. Needless to say, with its thick stone walls, there was no internet and no posting! Not that it mattered as we arrived so late and exhausted from a terrifically hard day of riding: 60 miles and 6,000 feet of climbing in intermittent heavy rain with some grades of 13-15 percent!
Today’s 60 mile ride offered an identical elevation gain of 6,000 feet. This is a habit we would like to break — soon! Today, in addition to the ubiquitous sawtooth hills with steep vertical climbs and drops, we started the day with a marvelous 6 mile hill in Dartmoor National Park. Just up, up, up at a steady grade amidst extraordinary flora and fauna.
The sun came out and I had a lovely chat with the proprietor of a shop in Postbridge as we left the Dartmoor National Park. He told me stories of mysterious Bronze Age rock circles. And sold me postcards (!) and flapjacks, a locally- made fruit and oat bar that Barb introduced us to. Along with the blackberries growing along every hedge, we are eating everything in site. Of course, until the giant hedge cutter comes along!
It is quite an experience making our way down cart-paths, with wooden sign-posts seemingly pointing to everywhere but the places we are headed. Suffice it to say that we have gotten lost.