Ride no.7 – Sheepy road ride (plus dreaming of cycle-tours abroad… Cuba?)

hello HerdwicksOn my road bike once again! This morning I awoke to a lovely Sunday off from work… and rain absolutely hammering down on the windowpanes. Actually it was more then rain… it was, dare I say it, sleet. That delightful mixture of rain, ice, and snow that falls from the sky when it’s damp and freezing outside. So today was definitely not a day that included getting soaked through with mud on my mountain bike. It was a day for freezing my feet off on my road bike!

As much as the weather was being a jerk, there was a brief two-hour spell when the rain stopped and you could see a few patches of blue sky – hooray! So off I went on my trusty Surly, around Derwentwater for a little road ride. First ride of 2014 on the road bike, and I feel like it’s been ages since I’ve last ridden my Cross-Check. My steed performed beautifully, and while the pedals spun round and round, thoughts turned to cycle-touring planning/dreams.

My last cycle tour was through Northumberland in the North East of England back in August 2013 – an anniversary trip for my fella and I. This year for our anniversary (five years!) we want to do a big trip, overseas, somewhere warm that is a good ‘intro to international touring’. Cuba keeps coming up as a front runner – mostly because we both have always wanted to experience the unique culture of Cuba (stuck in a time-warp of the 1950’s), but also because it’s tropical, friendly, safe, beautiful landscapes, little mountains, lots of beaches, and relatively cheap. So if we can scrounge up enough pennies, Cuba it is!

About Cuba – you should all watch this trailer from a rock climbing film called ‘Rockin’ Cuba’ – because the film encapsulates everything that seems awesome about the place – the music, the chaos, the landscapes, the people – take a gander:

Also, we both want to see Cuba before it changes drastically (ie the USA lifts it’s weird sanctions and all the US tourists take over). For now though it’s all in the planning stages – apparently August isn’t the best time for Carribbean holidays … hurricane season and the like. So I will continue to dream (and research), and see what comes of it all. Either way this summer there will be some format of biking adventure – be it a mountain biking circumnavigation of Mont Blanc via the hut system,  or a big fat cycle tour of Mediterranean countries, or maybe even a Peruvian adventure (I am desperate to get to Latin America….). Hrmmm. A bit of a travel ramble coming on now, I’ll stop there for the time being!

Hopefully ride no.7 will be on my mountain bike on slightly drier trails? It has rained/sleeted since this afternoon though, and the weather report isn’t looking too good for the next few days … fingers crossed for sunshine, folks.  Until then, check out the very soggy low-lying areas surrounding Derwentwater – eep.

Flooded fields & Derwentwater



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