Sunday, May 31, 2009

Final Countdown

Dad has his bike all ready for the off and has been out for a "test" ride on it fully laden. OMG how heavy is the bike. I couldn't physically lift it! There is no way I would be able to ride that up any hills - actually there is no way I could ride it on the flat! Even the thought of riding it up Keele Bank in the morning is enough to put anyone off! Dad says you drop down the gears and just "wind" the hill in. Yeah right! He did say the downhill bits are fun though ... I should think so with all that weight on the bike!

Hope the weather holds out .... it must be nice riding your bike on days like today.

Well the next report from me should be from the "official" starting line.

Friday, May 29, 2009

The Start ....

Dad will be starting from home about 9.00 am on Monday 1st June, passing through Knutton and heading into Keele University (via the old gates).

Anyone wanting to wave him off he should be heading past the entrance to Keele Sports Centre at around 9.15 am. Come and join us.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Final preparations

Well Dad has had some training in texting. He's not that good yet ... told him to practice each evening! He has managed to suss out how to ring though so that's excellent news. All we need now is for there to be a phone signal and hope that he doesn't loose the phone!

If anyone wants to get in touch with him on his travels to meet up, etc - drop me an email at kendieplonks at gmail dot com and I can try and get you in contact with Dad.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Keeping in touch

Well Dad is now the proud owner of a new mobile phone! It's basically just a phone - no fancy camera, radio, mp3 player. I've set it up for him and left it on the side for him to collect. His first test was to see if he could ring me! He passed the test. He didn't find the number I'd stored in the contact list but he just entered my number and rang it. Well it's a good start!

Test number two is to open and read the text I've just sent him. He is not intending keeping the phone on. For a start he'd never hear it ringing (I have enabled the vibrate though) and he says he doesn't want to be bothered with people phoning him! He'll just switch it on in the evening for an hour so I need a way of leaving messages for him. I thought text would work. I can just leave a message to say "ring me". He'll not even have to scroll down then.

Test number three will be trying not to lose the phone. It's about half the size of the phone he currently he has!

Oh it's all good fun teaching your parents the art of mobile communication.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Dougie Mac Ride

Done and dusted. Apparently it was VERY cold and wet. At one point it was even hailing - not good when you are on the bike! Dad said this is the last one he is doing to Llangollen next time he'll do the 50 miles to Nantwich ... well lets see what he says next year!

He even got recognised by a couple of the marshalls en-route! Repaired three punctures whilst out - thankfully none of them were Dad's but the people he was riding with. He said it's a struggle to fix a puncture when you are hands are so cold!

A warm shower and a cup of tea when he got home and he soon thawed out!

In training

Dad is out on the Dougie Mac cycle ride to Llangollen today. 110 mile round trip. This is the route

It's a shame it's just started raining (heavy!). He set out at 7.00 am so should have made it to Llangollen by now and be on the way back. Fingers crossed for a tail wind.

This photo was taken by Dougie Mac a couple of years ago on the same ride. It's at the midway point in Llangollen .... I think if they took the same photo today it would be with soggy wet biscuits. Dougie Mac still use it on their website and on their leaflet. As Dad always says, "it's good publicity because if this oldie can make it to Llangollen then anyone can"

Friday, May 15, 2009

The Route

All the dates are an estimation!


1st Liverpool
3rd Morecombe
5th Coastal Lakes

Heading into Scotland

8th Gretna Green
12th Stranraer
18th Arrochar
25th Oban
29th Fort William


3rd Kinlochewe
5th Ullapool
8th Thurso
9th John-o-Groats (I bet he doesn’t remember it’s my Birthday!!)
13th Inverness
17th Aberdeen
19th Dundee
20th Edinburgh

Heading back into England

22nd Berwick-on-Tweed
24th Morpeth
26th Sunderland
28th Filey
30th Hull


1st Skegness
5th Great Yarmouth
7th Felixstowe
9th Malton
12th Margate
16th Brighton
18th Bournemouth
21st Exmouth
27th Land’s End
30th Bude


3rd Weston-Super-Mare
7th Cardiff
9th Tenby
11th St Davids
15th Aberystwyth
18th Conway
24th Newcastle-under-Lyme and home !

Friday, May 8, 2009

Cycling around Britain - The Planning

Dad is now planning his next trip. A four month cycle trip around the coast of Britain. It's roughly 4,500 mile trip and he plans to cycle 250 miles a week (5 days x 50 miles). He is setting off from Liverpool on the 1st June and hopes to be back towards the end of September. So if you live close to the coast .... you might get my Dad knocking on your door looking for a bed for the night (or someone do his laundry!!). Will keep you posted on his plans.

Friday, May 1, 2009

Spain March/April 2009

March/April 2009

It's been awhile since I've updated this. Dad has had a couple trips in the UK but earlier this week I dropped him off at Manchester Airport as Dad is off travelling again. This time he is heading off to visit a friend in Spain. He's taken his bike and camping stuff and both of them are heading off on their travels with both bikes loaded.

The route they want to do is from Murcia to Aguilas. From there they will head off to Cabo de Gata which is a Natural Park area - that's more my Dad's sort of place - he's not into beaches! After that they will stop off in Almeria and then on to Granada. I'm not familiar with the area but just been looking on Google Earth.

They've had a bit of rain in Spain but hopefully the weather will stay OK and they can pedal away to their hearts' content.

Will update if and when I hear any more.

3rd April 2009

Just had a phone call from Dad. They are now in Almeria. They have had one night camping and one night in a hotel. Tonight it’s camping again! Not a cheap alternative at 12 Euros (approx £12.00 a night) and that’s on gravel! Thankfully Dad’s friend had the hindsight to take a mallet to hammer in the pegs! Dad said the campsite is “posh” and it has a swimming pool – but it’s closed. That should be a reduction in the fees! Weather is a bit cooler than here (I did tell him several times how nice the weather has been here!).

They have been doing approx 40 miles a day but it is hilly around the coast. Saying that Dad says the downhill bits are good! They will follow the coast around until they get level with Granada and then head inland.

They had just cooked up tea – no doubt noodles were on the menu! He did say after they had been the pub they may have some fish and chips ... well it is a Friday night!

He’ll hopefully call in a few days time.

Til then.

7th April 2009

A quick update. Just had a phone call to say Dad had arrived in Granada. He said it was a bit cool on the decent down into Granada. They camped last night in the mountains and tonight they have the luxury of a bed in Youth Hostel. They will now head back to Murcia but using inland roads this time. I've done a quick google and I think it's around 150 miles and they are doing about 40 miles a day. The plan is to be back in Murcia for Sunday dinner!

14th April 2009

Off to Manchester airport shortly to collect Dad. He left a message on my answering machine on Saturday to say they had finished their cycling and were back in Murcia and off to the local pub to watch Stoke v Newcastle! Weather hasn't been as good as here ... but no doubt now he's back the rain will follow him and it will start raining here! Will update with news of his trip soon.

May 2009

Fallen a bit behind updating this. Dad finished his ride in Spain. They managed to clock up 500 miles. Weather wasn't the best and some days were a bit chilly but they had a great time.