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chatman

London To Paris

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Long post with large photos so Warning Here.............

I would like to thank all those that sponsored me on this ride....:thumbsup::thumbsup::thumbsup::thumbsup::thumbsup::thumbsup:

A London to Paris Ride by a Mountain Biker…

Preparing the Marin for the epic ride…Changing the tyres and oiling the gears and all nuts and bolts tightened up.

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Well we started at the London Eye on Thursday 1st July in glorious sunshine…Me and 7 others (all riding road bikes and a few carbon fibre racing sledges ……

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I am third from the left as you look at the picture.

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The route out of London was manic as there was a serious accident on a roundabout near Elephant and Castle.. Looked quite bad... An overturned Lorry.

After the stop to take pictures we headed out and up the hill near Crystal Palace and out towards Croydon… then rolling roads and back lanes… on one of these lanes, one of the riders went around a bend a bit too quick, his back brake locked up and he slid across the road on his back side, grazing his right arm quite bad… we stopped to patch him up and stem the flow of blood… also to laugh and take pictures.

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Stopped for Lunch at a nice pub, where we picked up the guys in the support vehicle… a small inconspicuous type transit you could loose any where…

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We then headed off towards Ditchling Beacon… which meant more hills… But our route took us on the road opposite this monster of a hill, so we cycled past this down towards Newhaven.. total miles on day one was about 78.

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Day two was a leisurely day to start… waiting around for the ferry to take us to Dieppe… Sea was as calm as could be and the sun was hot…

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Then it was off onto an old railway line turned into a cycle path called the Greenway Avenue Verte… about 30km of smooth tarmac path….it was very featureless but we could get some good speed up, only for the crossings to slow you down every 1.5km or so…. Also it was very humid and the heat was immense…Consumed lots of water….

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Met up with the van at the end of this ride… and you can see the expression on my face says it all really…

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Then the next stage was a about another 30 miles into Gournay En Bray, a lovely little village and our hotel for the night….

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And onto the meal, some of us chose ostrich meat…hmmmm very nice but chewy… and of course cold beer.. And profiteroles as well… I knew I would burn them off the next day.

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Day three we started early as it was the last day and another long ride, about 73 miles into Paris.. The weather said it was overcast and may rain…Note that last bit!!!!.

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This is some of us sheltering in a bus stop after only cycling about 8 miles in torrential rain…I only had on my rear mud guard so was at this point getting soaked in the face from my front wheel and also the rear rooster tails being thrown up from the other bikes…but at least it was cooler than the other days had been….

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Also this day was to be known as the FLAT day….

Met the support van a 10 more miles down the road…. And the group had the first two punctures… this time I fitted the front mud guards.

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The grit was like razor sharp but very small fragments would penetrate the wheel rubber and sit inside and course slow punctures… So you had to physically look into the rip to remove the bits… very hard when it's raining very hard… We fixed one at the side of the road under a tree for shelter… then met the Van down the road. But the tyre we just fixed suddenly exploded with a loud BANG!!! Making us all jump… Must have been a faulty valve as the tube ripped apart….

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Then it was the cycle off into Paris… this time the gps was having a hissy fit, the so called waterproof unit was not. We had to resort to the mark 1 paper maps to navigate for a while. Went through a wonderful forest area on outskirts of Paris…. Was tempted to go off for a blast… but not on the tyres I was riding with… especially after all the rain we just had I thought better of it… it had stopped raining and the day had heated up again…. At this point the puncture tally was now at 10……. But it was not to be the last!! (I had two punctures so far!!)

On the final descent into Paris yep we got another one…

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Then we see the Eiffel Tower…relief was immense and the pleasure great… we had made it... pedalled through the manic Paris traffic… and I got to turn my suspension on going over the cobbled roads…Oh how I laughed at the others grimacing going over the pot holes and stones… then It was under the Eiffel Tower for the pictures….

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Total miles I did cycling to Paris was 214.78… and total over whole trip (from start to Finish with bike back in my shed was 227.61 miles)….PHEW WHAT A RIDE… enjoyed it, was hard in places, the hills in the UK where steep, the French roads where smooth but the drivers manic (seeing a French lorry overtake a car coming towards us, made you thank heavens for tight cycle shorts) scenery was amazing seeing it from the Bike… food and beer is €€€€€ in Paris. Hotels nice and beds even nicer having been cycling for hours…showers where glorious after a hard HOT days cycling… mates on the trip where amazing..the guys in the support van where our guardian angels..as we knew they had COLD water and food to top us up + spare inner tubes (how many can you take!!!!....) and I nicked all their choclate covered raisins hmmmmm nice...

Now the last journey was to the Gourde de Nore station and we had to cycle across Paris in Sunday traffic as it was also the French start to their holidays… so just as they say "When in Paris" just go… cycle routes are well marked and mostly in bus lanes… so almost at station and…………….. Yep you guessed it I get a PUNCTURE…arrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr (this took the total of punctures to 12) so last 300mtrs or so I had to run for the station (needed to get bikes booked in for Eurostar trip back, and we where 10 minutes late at this point) it was 30 deg and I was sweating a lot…. Found the place eventually (think the sign maker gave up at this point) booked in bikes… then ran down into station to book onto train… got home about 12:00am Monday…exhausted but satisfied I had achieved this ride…

If you ever want to do this or get the chance to… I say GO FOR IT….. it's a brilliant ride to do….

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What, no Toyota support vehicle? :P

Choclate covered raisins? Hope that van hadn't got mice :unsure:

Seriously Chatastic (gawd, did I really write that?) effort Well done!!! :toast::toast::thumbsup:

Where next then?

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Well done on the ride mate.. great challenge.

Would you do it again and where next?

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Congrats, Chats on a great post, and an even greater achievement.

One thing puzzles me tho,what did you have to promise the wife to be able to go to Paris without the good lady.?

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Good work Chatters :thumbsup:

Well done :toast::toast::toast:

......and thanks for going to all the trouble of the review.

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Well done on your superb effort thumbsup.gif,

A very enjoyable post to read especially the photo of the profiteroles... eat.gif :D

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Brilliant effort Chatters.

Were your nuts still tight when you reached the Eiffel tower :unsure:

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Well to answer you all....

It was immense fun... I would do it again....

Next challenge is one of the guys is doing Lands End to John O'Groates again next year, but I will do some of the stages not the whole lot..as it takes two weeks for the whole journey....(just need to find the flattest bit)

The profiteroles where delicious...highlight of the trip.....

My nuts where still intact and no pain in that area at all (good Vaseline or chamois creme helps a lot) + I had suspension to tackle the Paris cobbled roads.... Only have muscle ache currently and need to keep walking around at work, had cramp on the train coming home..that hurt...

I'll give it a week off the bike then ease back into my normal off road routine....(I'm no road biker) but kept up with these guys no problem...even whizzing past them down the hills...think the top speed at one point was 41 mph....

I'll take the wife another time to Paris..... lovely place but will probably have to save up so we can go shopping there... Gucci this Gucci that every where......

Again thanks for your support and the donations.....

 

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Well done Catman!! What a fantastic achivement.

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Well to answer you all....

It was immense fun... I would do it again....

Next challenge is one of the guys is doing Lands End to John O'Groates again next year, but I will do some of the stages not the whole lot..as it takes two weeks for the whole journey....(just need to find the flattest bit)

The profiteroles where delicious...highlight of the trip.....

My nuts where still intact and no pain in that area at all (good Vaseline or chamois creme helps a lot) + I had suspension to tackle the Paris cobbled roads.... Only have muscle ache currently and need to keep walking around at work, had cramp on the train coming home..that hurt...

I'll give it a week off the bike then ease back into my normal off road routine....(I'm no road biker) but kept up with these guys no problem...even whizzing past them down the hills...think the top speed at one point was 41 mph....

I'll take the wife another time to Paris..... lovely place but will probably have to save up so we can go shopping there... Gucci this Gucci that every where......

Again thanks for your support and the donations.....

Yes very very well done Chatters :toast: excellent piccies, not to be outdone by a group of southern jessies this has inspired Me, Big Kev, + Anchs to do something similar, our plan (AM + BK don't know yet) is to cycle from Derbyshire to Dover, Absail down the cliffs, swim to Calais, jog into Paris, Climb the Eiffel tower, Absail back down, cycle to Calais, row accross the channel, climb the white cliffs (without a rope) then run to Anchs house for a barbie + a pear cider.. just need to organise an afternoon when we are all not working,, Anyone wishing to join us will be welcome.. :thumbsup: Stew

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Make it the fifth week in Feb and I would really be interested in going,no,change that to I would definitely go.

Not so sure about climbing without a rope tho`, I bet the busybodies at H&S will insist you to take training for that.!!!!

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Nice try Crofter. Nobody falls for that 5th week in February in a leap year. We will go in the 6th week :rolleyes:

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Drat and double drat,Anchorman,foiled again. :ffs: :ffs: :censor: :censor:

So much for my cunning plan. :crybaby::crybaby:

:bookworm: Now where did I put plan B

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Oi you lot...High-jacking my post....:nono::nono::nono: Next your be letting members on here who don't drive Toyota's...like Nissan quadjshsysbxhgsyshsbdbxhsyxbs drivers :g::g:

If your up for it... I can include all your houses as stop off points for the Lands end to John O'Grotes ride...:scooter::gora:

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Well done Chatters, I did coast to coast WITHOUT a puncture, I think you need some of the cheapo Wilkinson innertubes I was using :thumbsup:

You are welcome to stop at Kingo towers on your way through but you might have to get the bus next day, the bike would most likely be nicked in Ellesmere Port :lol:

Kingo :thumbsup:

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Well done Chatters, I did coast to coast WITHOUT a puncture, I think you need some of the cheapo Wilkinson innertubes I was using :thumbsup:

You are welcome to stop at Kingo towers on your way through but you might have to get the bus next day, the bike would most likely be nicked in Ellesmere Port :lol:

Kingo :thumbsup:

Hey nice one Kingo :thumbsup::thumbsup::thumbsup::thumbsup::thumbsup:... think I might have to buy those next....:lol::lol:

Actually working on a big project currently, with a Large Manufacturing company not far from you....in a small village called Port Sunlight ;);););)

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hi chatman

wow.....fantastic ride....and excellent thread ,well done you :thumbsup:

nice marin bike :thumbsup:

i had a short...ish bike ride with a friend in lancashire last week....35 miles,along canal paths,bridleways,byways..not one puncture :D

as you say,good ol suspension :yahoo: ....as the cobbled canal paths were horrid :(

i invested in armadillo 'puncture proof' tyres for my 'giant' bike a while ago,and a nice big comfy saddle :lol:

although my bike is 10 years old now.its a giant 'cadex',it could do with a service really,but tempted on a new bike :yes:

perhaps we could meet for a off road bike ride sometime,seeing as you're local...ish

im not that quick,but its great fun :D

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Actually working on a big project currently, with a Large Manufacturing company not far from you....in a small village called Port Sunlight ;);););)

Oh yes the largish company..............LEVERS :lol: :lol: Yes they are on the large size

I have a good 20 mile ish round trip near me, takes me from E/P to Queensferry, then along the river Dee to Chester then back along the canal to E/P, all on cycle ways and not much road crossing to be done

Kingo :thumbsup:

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hi chatman

wow.....fantastic ride....and excellent thread ,well done you :thumbsup:

nice marin bike :thumbsup:

i had a short...ish bike ride with a friend in lancashire last week....35 miles,along canal paths,bridleways,byways..not one puncture :D

as you say,good ol suspension :yahoo: ....as the cobbled canal paths were horrid :(

i invested in armadillo 'puncture proof' tyres for my 'giant' bike a while ago,and a nice big comfy saddle :lol:

although my bike is 10 years old now.its a giant 'cadex',it could do with a service really,but tempted on a new bike :yes:

perhaps we could meet for a off road bike ride sometime,seeing as you're local...ish

im not that quick,but its great fun :D

Nice one....Canal tow paths are fun...be it boring sometimes.....

Did the cycle into work from home this morning.... set off @06:30 arrived at work @09:15...had a few off map moments where the sign maker obviously thought he/she would take lunch or just no bothered.... some tracks where so overgrown no one had been down there for years:blink::blink::blink:... 12 foot high stinging nettles and thorns like nails..... and added upto a far few scratches on my forearms... !Removed! good fun though...:unsure::unsure::unsure:

Re-route on way home to miss the jungle bits out.... not bad for a 26mile journey.... Oh and it's raining here now so should be fun on way home....

I'm bringing the RAV tomorrow...:rolleyes::rolleyes::rolleyes::rolleyes:

Hey Parts King.... maybe we should do a RAV MTB section.....Can you get any parts for these bikes ;););););)

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Hey Parts King.... maybe we should do a RAV MTB section.....Can you get any parts for these bikes ;););););)

Good idea, but I'm not cycling along the M6 to meet up with the southern section under any circumstances :eek:

I'm not sure about parts for bikes, all I know about bike parts you could write on the back of a !Removed! packet :lol:

Kingo :thumbsup:

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