On my first attempt Dartmoor I know well, was what I expected and easily doable for someone whos has been cycling for 50 years, cycled 95+% of dartmoors paths and tracks, completed in off/on road motorcycle trails for twenty years.
I have greenlanned and been over Dartmoor off road before on my tourer, the bike I used.
So it relatively easy for me
Got lost and gave up going through the lanes between the moors, not doable without sat nav for sure.
Gave up and headed for crediton and a lift home, 113 miles.
Take two- got to Dartmoor beetor cross, a stones throw from Dartmoor, made the decision that going home was best option, honestly I did not fancy Dartmoor in the dark and was feeling cold with just short sleeves and a windproof top, just had enough food to get through and a 27 mile easy ride down the road after some 33 miles over Dartmoor.
Made it to newton abbot 7 miles from home and her in doors phoned to see where I was, weakened and took a lift
164 miles unsupported and 17.5 hrs moving time, avg 9.1 mph including exemoor, 22 hours away from home total.
Did not feel lack of energy as I ate every hour and constantly topped up.
Took a power nap in the day in a bus shelter which probably helped me from falling asleep.
Not hungry at home but forced some soup down me, slept well till next day.
I got my head down for 3.5 hours before I set off, that's normal daily sleep for me.
Will I do it again...................if it wasn't for the cycling on footpaths and lifting gates, I can only suppose that's what every other person who has claimed to have done the route over exemoor had done, of lifted bike over gates to footpaths.
Did not see a soul on a bike the whole route over Exmoor (except a chain gang going for an easy route on full sus bikes, probably a pay to ride the wild club), one section of killer downhill with rock slabs I saw several 4x4's quads, trail bikes, no helmets overtaking me, I rode down most of it to end with an audience of three lads leaning on the bonnets of 4x4's but not saying a word as I man handled my steed to the bottom without mishap
Probably thought I was lost
Never say never
Just doing the 116 miles from Plymouth The Hoe to Minehead in a day would probably be too easy even on my tourer.
Late in the year so daylight last week was 05.20 - 21.30 approx.
It would have to be next week or nothing.
Felt in general better that the first take even though another 50 miles further, I am probably fitter or more acclimatised to a long day now.
Keep bike as light as possible.
Mine was 45Ibs plus
Suspension will make the ride more comfortable, but you will still have to walk up hill.
When you are down too 3 mph going up hill, walking will save energy and be just as fast.
Do carry at least two bottles preferably 2 litres.
(I was carrying three bottles plus 1 litre in the pannier, total 4.5 litres or one gallon) But only because I do not stop at cafes etc, and had a long ride to start.
Fill bottles from streams with purification tabs, at every chance, even in cold weather you will lose fluid.
Take rations always and eat every hour.
Sat nav is mandatory.
Rest up every two hours without fail, its too easy to carry on because you can, becoming dehydrated and running fuel store down.
If wet weather is forcast it will reduce speed and falls will be common, I was lucky it was bone dry.
You need soles with grip on rocks and grass.
The fords on Dartmoor will be flooded in wet weather so plan detours.
As long as you are out of sight of a road or dwelling place, its quite legal to camp on Dartmoor, but no open fires!
Exemoor is an assault course, Dartmoor is just mixed terrain and easily doable on a hybrid with 35 mm tyres and some will.