2016: Could Do Better?

Mmm… A year that will go down in history for the wrong reasons although a year that, compared to 1350 (Black Death in Europe), 1914 and 1939, one that may soon be forgotten. Sense will prevail in European politics (although it may have us wondering why we went out of our way to make life difficult by quitting the EU), Trump can only be in power for a maximum of 8 years (although I wouldn’t bet against him trying to change that limit) and I’d like to think that the petty xenophobes and racists who have been allowed out of their narrow minds for a few months will soon be silenced again. They will always exist but 2016 does seem to have given them reason to think their opinions are worthy of the oxygen of publicity.

As far as goes, 2016 has been one of those ‘post-ride’ years where things go a little quiet. This is only the 120th post of the year (since August 2008 there have been over 2,500 posts so that is a low number) but it’s been a year when the page hits (since the counting started in 2010) have broken through 1 million figure and are currently approaching 1.1 million. The site was, of course, redesigned earlier in the year…


…and a new sister site – – opened in order to seperate out the things that are specifically concerned with the writing and books (although they still make regular appearances here on


But back to The most popular posts were:

  1. 10 Essentials For Long-Distance Cycling Trips
  2. The ‘Green Ways’ Around Spain – Cycling And Walking For All Ages  (posted in 2014) and that all time classic…
  3. The Ortlieb Roller Classic (Plus) Pannier With QL2.1 (posted in 2015)

The most popular pages on the website were:

  1. Route Planning (for the Eurovelo 5 – first published in 2009 and the route I cycled in 2010)
  2. Eurovelo 1 (the one I cycled part of in 2015) and
  3. Eurovelo 8 (the one I cycled in 2013)

The top three (meaningful) search expressions that brought people to were:

  1. “ben fogle cycling sowerby bridge” (I wrote a piece about his visit to the Calder Valley)
  2. “eurovelo 5” and
  3. “eurovelo 15”

The top three (non-social media) referrers were the following pages elsewhere on the web:

  1. The best long-distance cycle routes
  2. The Adventure Junkies and
  3. (a German language site about European cycling routes)

Once people had visited, here are the three top sites (the links are examples) they went to for relief:

  1. (that’s nice I suppose…)
  2. and
  3. (to see my own GPS tracked routes)

The top video people watched was this one of the final few minutes of the cycle to Nordkapp in 2015:

The second most popular ‘video’ was this recording of me being interviewed on BBC Radio Leeds. (There are no pictures!)

Once again people came here from across the globe…


…with the top three countries being the UK, the USA and Germany. Perhaps we’ll get a Greenlander before midnight tonight. Now I’ve mentioned ‘Greenland’, perhaps I might.

So, a quiet year compared to 2010, 2013 and 2015 when I was cycling but not a bad one. The quiet years have coincided with me writing the books and 2016 has been no different in that respect. However, the major book edits have been completed and I should have more time to devote to and in 2017.

Look out for that latest book – Spain to Norway on a Bike Called Reggie – in May 2017 and look out for me giving a talk near you in the spring and summer. A full list of current confirmed events is on the ‘speaking’ page of

Which just leaves me to thank you for passing this little corner of the world wide web and to wish you a Happy New Year for 2017. Now stop reading this and go for a bike ride!

Categories: Cycling

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