Gibraltar

Cycle-touring, Expeditions, Adventures, Major cycle routes NOT LeJoG (see other special board)
John Holiday
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Gibraltar

Postby John Holiday » 11 Feb 2020, 11:09am

Just back from enjoyable two weeks of winter sunshine in Algarve, with Brompton to enable wider exploration.
The roads in Portugal seemed remarkably quiet,with lots of Pedelecs about.
Had a day trip to Gibraltar. Never seen anywhere so congested! Made Malta looked quiet! Why anyone would drive in Gibraltar is beyond me. Huge numbers of motor scooters hurtling about from all directions & lots of electric scooters too,of dubious legality..
Interesting place to explore on the Brompton, & had to wait on main exit road while Easyjet plane took off,as runway crosses road!

ChrisF
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Re: Gibraltar

Postby ChrisF » 11 Feb 2020, 11:13pm

I agree, I paid a visit by bike a couple of years ago. I just couldn't think why there were so many vehicles, when everything is virually within walking distance unless you need to go into Spain.
Did you ride up to the rock?
Chris F, Cornwall

John Holiday
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Re: Gibraltar

Postby John Holiday » 14 Feb 2020, 4:03pm

Yes, but hard work. Could do with lower gear!

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Mick F
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Re: Gibraltar

Postby Mick F » 14 Feb 2020, 4:32pm

It's been a few years since I was in Gib. Last time was on a cruise with Mrs Mick F.
Been there hundreds of times in the RN, and often took my bike. Been over the border too and cycled in Spain.

The best thing you can do with a bike in Gib, is to ride up the Rock. Leave the town southerly and up past the casino turning left and right and zig zagging all the way to the top.

The highest point is Windmill Hill, but the general top is the top of the cable car at the restaurant.

I've been up there with a 3sp SA Raleigh as well as my 6sp/double Mercian. Quite a climb, but coming back down into the town I always found harder due to the steepness and braking all the way.

When there in RN ships, we were always encouraged to run up the Rock. There's some sort of record involved, and I think RN ships still try to break the record.

Last time I ran it, I was in my early 40s and walked much of the way! I still finished sooner than some younger chaps had ran it! :lol:
What it is to be fit eh?
Mick F. Cornwall

st599_uk
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Re: Gibraltar

Postby st599_uk » 14 Feb 2020, 4:34pm

John Holiday wrote:Why anyone would drive in Gibraltar is beyond me.


What's the comparative Fuel Tax Rate these days? When I was last there, you used to get hundreds of vehicles queueing to come in to Gibraltar, fill up then head off again.

I liked to ride out to the massive mosque and watch sunset.
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simonhill
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Re: Gibraltar

Postby simonhill » 15 Feb 2020, 12:26am

I stayed Spanish side when on a shirt trip there, because it was much cheaper. I regretted not having a bike just to cover the couple of miles in and out to centre, but then found the buses good and half price if over 60. Bike not needed.

It could be an interesting place post Brexit. I don't think they've decided how to treat it yet.

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Mick F
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Re: Gibraltar

Postby Mick F » 15 Feb 2020, 9:15am

Some of us remember Gib before the border opened. :D

The UK side was open, but the Spanish side was locked shut and guarded.
Any Brit who wanted to go to Spain, had to cross to Tangier and back to La Linea or Algeciras.
Fresh fruit and veg and meats came in by plane from UK or by ship from UK.

TBH, Gib was better in those days. Having spoken to Gibraltarians about this over the years that we called in, many would have agreed. Maybe not now though.
Mick F. Cornwall

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yakdiver
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Re: Gibraltar

Postby yakdiver » 15 Feb 2020, 4:26pm

Not too sure now, but at one time drinking water was shipped in from the UK
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Mick F
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Re: Gibraltar

Postby Mick F » 16 Feb 2020, 7:31am

1905 I think, they built the rainwater catchments.
Massive areas on the steep slopes on the Med side.
Mick F. Cornwall

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robgul
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Re: Gibraltar

Postby robgul » 16 Feb 2020, 7:43am

Mick F wrote:Some of us remember Gib before the border opened. :D

The UK side was open, but the Spanish side was locked shut and guarded.
Any Brit who wanted to go to Spain, had to cross to Tangier and back to La Linea or Algeciras.
Fresh fruit and veg and meats came in by plane from UK or by ship from UK.

TBH, Gib was better in those days. Having spoken to Gibraltarians about this over the years that we called in, many would have agreed. Maybe not now though.


"before the border opened" - some of us remember it before the border closed!! We went to Gibraltar by car (from the UK) in 1961 - a looong way! My father driving + mother + my 2 brothers - pretty tight in a Standard Ensign. Vividly remember we drove up the rock to where the apes hang out - one of them ripped the radio aerial off the car!

Whole trip was epic - London - Dover - Bordeaux - Biarritz - Madrid - Seville - Gibraltar and then whole lengh of the Med coast, into France to Cannes - and back up through Paris to Calais and home - all with no motorways.

Rob

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Mick F
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Re: Gibraltar

Postby Mick F » 16 Feb 2020, 3:00pm

:D :D
Excellent!

My first visit was an 18yo in my first ship HMS Achilles in early spring 1971 as an apprentice. First port of call on our way out east. The Suez was still closed back then, so our trip took us down the Atlantic via Ascension and St Helena the Cape before heading out over the Indian Ocean.

Gib
St Helena
Simonstown - not far from Cape Town.
Mombassa
Gan - Maldives
Singapore
Sidney
Aukland, Gisborne and Nelson NZ
Suva - Fiji
Vila - New Hebrides (now Vanutu)
Port Moresby - Papua New Guinea
Singapore
Cochin - SW India
Bahrein
Mombassa
.......... and then I flew home to carry on with my training.
I was away for 10months.

Achilles took the same route back and was away from home for over 12months.
Mick F. Cornwall

John Holiday
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Re: Gibraltar

Postby John Holiday » 16 Feb 2020, 7:50pm

Obviously it has stirred a few memories!
The water supply comes from a desalination plant.
Living in Gibraltar is very expensive, which is why are large proportion of the working population live in Spain and commute. With the hardening attitude following Brexit, will be interesting to see if this changes.
Ironically, the Spanish have two Enclaves in Morocco, but that's different of course!

st599_uk
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Re: Gibraltar

Postby st599_uk » 17 Feb 2020, 8:54pm

John Holiday wrote:Obviously it has stirred a few memories!
The water supply comes from a desalination plant.
Living in Gibraltar is very expensive, which is why are large proportion of the working population live in Spain and commute. With the hardening attitude following Brexit, will be interesting to see if this changes.
Ironically, the Spanish have two Enclaves in Morocco, but that's different of course!
Ceuta is an interesting place. There's a nice marina, the rest is a dump. But you can cross the border and get a bus to some very interesting Moroccan towns.
A novice learning...
“the dreamers of the day are dangerous men, for they may act their dreams with open eyes, to make it possible.”

roberts8
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Re: Gibraltar

Postby roberts8 » 18 Feb 2020, 8:14am

Took a yacht into Ceuta once and got a bus to the chaotic border crossing then a taxi to Tetuan. Thought the Spanish are hypocritical regarding Gib. Never looked into it but I would have thought some good touring potential to cycle the coast road.
The border was rough as illegal immigrants were being returned and beaten which was not good.
Not a place my wife intends to return too but I would think it has potential on a bike.