LEJOG - 10 days in August but beware the midges

Specific board for this popular undertaking.
StewartH
Posts: 2
Joined: 19 Oct 2020, 11:50am

LEJOG - 10 days in August but beware the midges

Postby StewartH » 19 Oct 2020, 10:01pm

I completed a 10 day, 1047 mile LEJOG so would like to thank everyone who has contributed to this forum. Some invaluable info which really helped with the trip. So...................THANKS!!!!!

My route was finally decided on by the availability of cheap hotels, booked within a week of departure after the pandemic restrictions in the country eased down at the start of August. And to get between points I just used Google Maps to get an idea, and a torn out AA road map for directions whilst on the road. Not ideal but it worked and allowed me a bit more flexibility on the day. I decided not to take the phone so I could be away from it's distractions for at least 10 days of my adult life!

I rode my road bike so stuck to country lanes, B roads and quiet A roads where possible. The Granite Trail, Bridgwater - Taunton Canal Path and A9 cycle path were the only off road sections that I braved and were fine with skinny tyres (25mm width). The absolutely stunning cycle path up from Pitlochry was closed for resurfacing just south of Dalwhinnie. At that point I cycled on the A9 as it was quieter than the roads I commute into Leeds on. We did hit Scotland after the 11th August so the school children had gone back at that point, and it was midweek, so maybe that helped with the traffic levels. You could also phone for a lift if you didn't want to brave the road (a number was given on the signage).

Most days took 6-7 hours to cycle which was perfect. It meant I could stop off and see places properly and I didn't ever feel like I was in a massive rush. My fav parts were the Wye Valley, the A49 cutting through the Shropshire Hills AONB, Peak District (I was lucky to see the Bearded Vulture in the far distance near Holmes Moss), and the ride up through the Cairngorms. I live in Bingley in West Yorkshire so am used to hilly rides so was pleasantly surprised by the terrain. Indeed I regret not cycling over Dartmoor but I can save it for another time.

My LEJOG went seamlessly apart from two things. Riding North of Lairg up through the Northern Highlands I should have taken heed of the full face nets that some road construction workers were wearing. Conditions vary and things change, but I hit swarms of midges unlike anything I have ever encountered on the west coast and in hindsight I might have avoided the area. They were especially bad around the stunning Loch Naver. Thankfully the midges had disappeared by the time I got to Bettyhill, but my body was completely covered in a rash of bites. Oh and the only other issue was on the way home.....finding out I was made redundant after 22 years with the same company.

Jamesh
Posts: 1651
Joined: 2 Jan 2017, 5:56pm

Re: LEJOG - 10 days in August but beware the midges

Postby Jamesh » 20 Oct 2020, 9:27am

Well done.

Just cycle up to dick Hudson's, over the cow and calf and up over Keighley gate and you will have done Dartmoor!!!

Sorry to hear about your job hope you can find something else asap.

Cheers James

whoof
Posts: 2519
Joined: 29 Apr 2014, 2:13pm

Re: LEJOG - 10 days in August but beware the midges

Postby whoof » 20 Oct 2020, 1:09pm

Sounds like you had a really good ride and managed to fit into a brief window of opportunity.

I rode up the Wye Valley on Sunday and the trees were starting to turn which is always stunning. Out of bounds for the next two weeks at least.

I am have a similar view to the hills of Devon and Cornwall. They go up and then down the other side but it's riding a bike on some hills.

Sorry to hear about your job, hope that they gave you a decent pay out after 22 years. On the bright side after 22 years you might be ready for a change and find something better.

Jamesh
Posts: 1651
Joined: 2 Jan 2017, 5:56pm

Re: LEJOG - 10 days in August but beware the midges

Postby Jamesh » 21 Oct 2020, 10:34pm

What line of work are you in?
I'll keep my ear to the ground for anything suitable being local in Baildon?

Cheers James

StewartH
Posts: 2
Joined: 19 Oct 2020, 11:50am

Re: LEJOG - 10 days in August but beware the midges

Postby StewartH » 22 Oct 2020, 9:26pm

Thanks for that. I worked in adventure / long haul travel so I’ve just got to figure whether I wait it out for the Industry to pick up, retrain or just get anything I can find.. Thankfully I’m still being paid until the end of the year so in a better position than most. And at least it means more time to cycle at the moment! Did you feel the earthquake over in Baildon the other week?

Cowsham
Posts: 968
Joined: 4 Nov 2019, 1:33pm

Re: LEJOG - 10 days in August but beware the midges

Postby Cowsham » 22 Oct 2020, 10:10pm

Well done -- your daily average speed works out around 15MPH that's some going over 105 miles a day for 10 days. Did you pack much stuff?

Jamesh
Posts: 1651
Joined: 2 Jan 2017, 5:56pm

Re: LEJOG - 10 days in August but beware the midges

Postby Jamesh » 22 Oct 2020, 11:38pm

StewartH wrote:Thanks for that. I worked in adventure / long haul travel so I’ve just got to figure whether I wait it out for the Industry to pick up, retrain or just get anything I can find.. Thankfully I’m still being paid until the end of the year so in a better position than most. And at least it means more time to cycle at the moment! Did you feel the earthquake over in Baildon the other week?


No I didn't unless you mean the wife finding out I had brought too many wood working tools on eBay over the weekend!!!

Cheers James