Yorkshire 2018: Route 1… A Bridge Too Far?

Ultimately, yes. I’ve postponed my plans for this weekend due to the weather forecast but the planning was not in vain. I am now much better prepared to shoot off for a few days of bike-packing than I was just a few days ago. Below is a record of my thought processes over the course of yesterday…

Screen Shot 2018-03-30 at 09.58.15I’ve decided that this weekend I will head out on the first of my Yorkshire 2018 rides… Hull to Whitby along the EuroVelo 12, locally labelled as National Cycle Network route 1. But I’ve just discovered (or rather, admitted to myself) that I am woefully underprepared in so many ways. Having given no thought to the nitty gritty of any of the rides prior to sitting down at my computer this morning, this is hardly surprising. So far I have discovered that trains from Selby to Hull – an essential stretch of line if travelling from West Yorkshire to the east coast – have been replaced by buses all weekend, the Youth Hostel in Beverley is full on Saturday night, the one Warmshowers person that I have approached has, justifiably said ‘no’ as the request was for tomorrow night and well, I’d probably do the same given such short notice, and trains from Whitby south don’t exist (although, on the positive side, the route of the old railway line is part of the NCN 1, the Cinder Track). The bike has been sitting idle for several – no many – weeks, I have yet to purchase any suitable backpacking bags to carry my minimal gear and the weather forecast for the Easter weekend in East Yorkshire is for it to be cold, wet and (no joking), on Monday, potentially snowy. To add to all these woes, I’m still trying to shake off the cold that I have had for the past week or so. The one positive is that I have booked a bed at the Youth Hostel in Scarborough for Sunday night so there’s no turning back! Well, there could be, but I’d lose the ยฃ17 I’ve paid for it.*

(* Update: Not true – they gave me a 90% refund…)

A plan, however, is beginning to coalesce. I will drive the car to Hull where I will leave it in a carpark for the weekend. Once I arrive in Whitby on Monday afternoon and I will either catch the North Yorkshire Moors Railway to Pickering and then cycle across to Scarborough (30km) or turn around and cycle back along the Cinder Track (35 km). Once back in Scarborough I can catch the train to Hull, pick up the car and drive home. But where to stay on Saturday? That is the question… Beverley is handily located and there are options but they are not cheap. Bridlington is another option but it’s a little too far for day 1 (when I will have driven from home and had a look around Hull) at 70+ km and would leave day 2 quite short at around 35 km. Beverley is too handy to ignore! Back to Warmshowers… I’ve just sent another request in hope rather than expectation. There’s also someone in Driffield. There might be a response later, if not, there is always the Beverley Guesthouse. Worth reading the Trip Advisor responses from the owner to his disgruntled customers. Very Fawlty Towers…

So aside from the accommodation issues on Saturday, I need to sort out the bike. Not Reggie, but Dale. He is at least clean courtesy of the jet wash of one of the neighbours earlier this week but he’s severely depleted on recent bike miles. That issue of the bike-packing bags is utmost in my mind. Panniers are not an option for Dale. A trip to Blazing Saddles in Hebden Bridge is on the cards, failing that to All Terrain Cycles in Bradford… Watch this space.

UPDATE: 4pm (I told you to watch this space…) The 2nd Warmshowers host in Beverley has confirmed and, following a trip to Blazing Saddles in Hebden Bridge, Dale has a slightly new look. Top Peak bags front and rear and a handy little bag on the upper frame bar (although I’m sure it’s not called that):

UPDATE 2: Midnight, Friday

The weather is worrying me. I think there’s a good chance of me delaying for a week or so…

3 replies »

  1. Character building weather, remember its only ever the wrong clothes, get on with it !!! , while I sit indoors with the heating on, bike tucked away nice and dry and a big mug of coffee in hand, awaiting your next report. Good luck if you do set off though.

  2. For 2 nights away a rucksack will suffice – just pack uber light. I used a 15 litre pack when I cycled the Ridgeway. Other option is pack even lighter and do it in a day.

  3. It all sounds pretty dreary really . I’d be tempted to go to the cinema and keep warm , or catch up on bbciplayer and watch 7 episodes of Keeping Faith ….the best drama on telly for years!
    But then I’m definitely getting soft as an aging 73 year old idiot in Lycra ! I’ve just bought a fold up bike which fits in the car boot snugly ……for my trip to Italy in May and some cycling along the river Adda to Lecco etc ….
    Once you’re on yer bike around hull, Scarborough, Filey , Whitby, primrose valley , and RHB you’ll love it all I’m sure .
    Me ? I’ll be in church for the Triduum most of the time ……
    Enjoy your Paschal Joy !

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