Hares and the Tortoise on the C2C!

Commuting, Day rides, Audax, Incidents, etc.
Manx Cat
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Postby Manx Cat » 29 Aug 2008, 9:03am

Thanks for the info regarding the steel works... that was interesting, pity there wasnt a poster about it on the wagon, maybe there had been at some point though?

Regarding loos in Whitehaven. Tried the Beacon, we were told in no uncertain terms it was not a public toilet! :lol: We really did look for a place too, but found nowhere.. lack of signs me thinks. But now we know there are some. It must be frustrating for food establishments for folk to always be nipping in to the loo. (I would of paid for the private moment too I was so desparate).

The trip was done over 3 days. Whitehaven - Penrith distance 53 miles, sett off at 11.09am arrived 7.15pm, one stop all day.

Then Penrith - Stanhope or in my case the Parkhead Station. DIstance 47 miles. Set off at 9am arrived at 7pm. ONe stop all day.

THen last day, Parkhouse Station to Tynemouth. Distance less than 40 miles. Set off 9am, arrived at 3pm. One stop all day.

If I were to do it again, I would prefer a longer more leisurely C2C. It was a bit like, peddle, peddle, peddle... Had my girls been with me, we could not have completed it over 3 days. Besides, we had no time at all for just relaxing and looking...

Hares and Tortoise .... The rest of the group went at a mad pace, ate at every stop, had time to look around. But on the first 2 days, both Lucy and I arrived at our digs first! :lol:

New bike was great. Everyone else had no mudguards, no lights :shock: and no panniers..... THey all thought I was mad to carry all my stuff, but heck.... whats a touring bike to do if not to tour?

Besides there was no back up whatsoever on this trip. One bloke broke his collarbone and even he had to sort his own problems out.

Dunno how his bike got back to the digs, but it was a hired one.

Not sure if i would use the holiday company again... I preferred the security of back up.



Postby Asdace » 29 Aug 2008, 10:36am

In the years, I've done C2C. There was never any information regarding the sculptures, most of them made up of scrap metal from the old steel works in Consett.

There is a public toilet in Whitehaven in the Market Place nr Roper Street.

I think you did well in the 3 days, the miles you did per day is about the average. I average 50/60 mpd, although I like to have a few more stops en-route, morning, mid-day and afternoon. I like to think that 5 days would be more leisurely, although 136 miles is a small amount. However with towns such as Whitehaven, Keswick, Penrith, Stanhope and Consett, one could easily spend 6/8 days on the C2C.

I much prefer my mudguards and always carry lights, just in case. Also I carry a light-weight Hi-Viz jacket, which acts like a windproof and for poor conditions on the Pennine tops.

Panniers, that's a personal choice. Although a Carradice Camper Longflap plus a bar-bag would be ideal for that type of holiday.

Anyway, think about me next week. Doing the Double Coast to Coast in 6 days, carrying all my own camping gear. So watch out for a report and photos.

Manx Cat
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Postby Manx Cat » 29 Aug 2008, 11:10am

I shall indeed Asdace

Please say hello to all those at Parkhead Station for me this time! :lol:

Get lots of pics. Really looking forward you hearing how you got on. I think 6 days is the ideal.

Cept, your doing it there and back! And with all your gear too! :shock: Take time to look at stuff along the way. We have a book at home 'Bo**ocks to ALton Towers' and there were loads of things in that book, which we passed by... Sorry about the rude word, but its the title honest.... and a very funny read too.

Pencil museum, Ostrich farm and others...

Next holiday is def one that Im off and on the bike.

WIshing you all the best... Exactly when do you go???

(so a postcard can be sent to 'she who cannot be named' ensuring she is in Spain or somewhere...:lol:)



Postby Asdace » 29 Aug 2008, 1:25pm

My C2C route is roughly : Middleton in Teesdale - Penrith - Ennerdale Bridge - Kirkby Stephen - Vale of Mowbray - North Yorkshire Coast.

If I manage to get to the Waskerley Way, I shall pop in to the Parkhead Station :wink:

I don't have a set route to follow, although I've draft to follow on paper. I'm going to take each day as it comes, which I did in my early days of touring, so bit like back to basics. I find the Sustrans route system ok, but not my idea of touring.

One route I have reserved in mind is the Reivers and Walney to Whitby for next year, a total of 400 miles.

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Postby chrisoleary » 29 Aug 2008, 2:19pm

:shock: I am shocked to hear that these holiday companies do not offer support. I thought that was the whole intention of doing these trips with them. I suppose most people use the baggage couriers that transport your bags to your next destination (and quite often nearly knock me off my bike while doing so using their mobiles or speeding on quiet country roads :twisted: ).
Your first 6 pic's are my local ride, and I have just got back in from a ride to Lorton - still lots of groups setting off. I hope they all enjoy the ride.

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Postby Manx Cat » 29 Aug 2008, 3:19pm

Hi Chris

The holiday company I went with on the C2C, organised the route and sorted out accommodation and then took all your bags to that accommodation and they returned you and your bike back to the start. So this bit was supported.

It was certainly not an expensive trip for me.

I have now done two this year. The first one was Hadrians Wall, and this was supported the entire way - I took my young teenagers with me. The second was C2C as a self guided trip. Difference in purchase price of the two trips was about half.... So the C2C trip should of cost me about £270 not including my travel expenses to get there. Hadrians on the other hand was £380 each, wiht one child going half fare... So I think you get what you pay for. I admit they are pricy as short breaks go, but we did get an awlful lot out of it..

I shall add, I won the second holiday. Normally I would of brought my family on the C2C, but didnt this time around due to it being over 3 days only and I had concerns about the hills. I was right not to bring them, I know they couldnt of done day 2.

To compare, I prefered the entirely supported holiday rather than self guided, but simply because I prefer to cycle with my girls rather than without them.

As I gain more confidence, I think there is a lot to say about getting on the bike and just going out there... but if I take my girls, I will end up with all the baggage on MY bike... I think that might just kill me.... :lol:

Saying that... I didnt think the bloke with the broken collar bone (his own fault for racing too fast on a stoney hairpin, but even so...) was very well looked after. Had it been my company, I would of got to the hospital and checked he was ok.. But then Im a fussy moo.


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Postby chrisoleary » 29 Aug 2008, 3:34pm

I am pleased you enjoyed it Mary.

£270 and you won it??

I think I know what I need to be doing in my spare time. :wink:

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Postby ferrit worrier » 3 Sep 2008, 8:44pm

Nice one Mary Well done. Like the pics That slipway looks a tad on the steep side! I'm hoping to do it my self at the end of Sept, I'm looking at a routing at the moment. But I'll need to keep it short as possible.

Percussive maintainance, if it don't fit, hit it with the hammer.

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Postby lauriematt » 3 Sep 2008, 9:16pm


always love your reports on rides MC...great pics!...just out of curiousity what camera are you using???

im a bit old fashioned and still use the single-use film type...but theyre starting to seem poorer and poorer quality compared to all these digital snaps. think its time i invested in some proper gear

i too am a PRETTY SLOW RIDER on tour...i probably average 10mph! but the way i see it you get to enjoy the views for longer!

youve done really well! and you look like you had a hell of a time!


Re: Hares and the Tortoise on the C2C!

Postby Jonty » 8 Dec 2009, 11:48pm

Fantastic pictures and what a ride. Good for you for sticking at it. I felt exhausted reading about it.

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Re: Hares and the Tortoise on the C2C!

Postby AlanD » 9 Dec 2009, 2:03pm

Fantastic Pictures Mary! Reminds me of the times I was up there with the YHA when I was younger. "Why do I climb mountains? Because theyre there!"
Just out of curiosity. I am not a confident holiday organizer, prefer to tag along. So how did you hear of this and how did you book/organize yourself.

Whitehaven, Happy memories. Our church youth group went up there for a week and I developed a serious case of inloveitis over a lovely lass from Cleator Moor. Sigh!

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Re: Hares and the Tortoise on the C2C!

Postby nikruth » 9 Dec 2009, 2:14pm

Saddleskedaddle are amongst one of the many companies that offer self guided and or supported holidays on c2c.This particular company were fantastic.

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Re: Hares and the Tortoise on the C2C!

Postby beachcomber » 13 Dec 2009, 5:06pm

So glad you enjoyed the C2C. M C.
I'm a ride guide with Charity Adventure. We ride C2C and Hadrian's each year plus other guided rides, Coast & Castles etc.

We use a tour bus with bunks on board as our accommodation. The bus meets us each night at a pre set location with showers, restaurant, bar etc.

All the guides are volunteers so every penny raised goes to the charity.
With no set minimum for sponsorship.

The cost of each ride is split between the number of riders.

It's great for a laid back trip or for anyone not confident enough to tackle the ride on their own.

Hopefully the routes will be passable by next year.

You can view charityadventure.org or see our stand at the CTC rally at York.

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Re: Hares and the Tortoise on the C2C!

Postby cranky1 » 22 Dec 2009, 1:12pm

Glad you enjoyed your tour of gods country some nice photos too.
Be carefull out there.

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Re: Hares and the Tortoise on the C2C!

Postby beachcomber » 22 Dec 2009, 1:39pm

Hi Cranky1,

I can see Hartlepool out of my front window. Give us a wave! :lol: