Le Tour - Day 1 Round Up

chris's picture

Getting knocked off your bike the moment you land in London is probably not the best way to start three days of cycling... apparently she didn't see my bright blue Drupal cycle shorts and vibrant lime green Paramo jacket when she broad-sided me whilst attempting to make a right turn! Thankfully there was no permanent damage to bike or body but it was my first encounter with a bonnet and needless to say I was pretty shook up.

After a great evening with Nicolas (and his fantastic Lomo Saltado) and a good sleep I headed for the start line at Trafalgar Square on Friday morning. I took a quick photo to mark the occasion and was away for 07.40am

Thanks to the marvellous help from members of www.cyclechat.co.uk I'd got a great route marked up in detail and despite missing a turn and having to back track half a mile (Carshalton Lane) I stayed on route for the whole 70 miles.

Getting south of the M25 was a real boost and the occasional stretch of country lane without traffic was blissful. Some favourite roads included Lonesome Lane and the whole area around Chiltington were I encountered a storm, so much rain fell in such a short period that the drains couldn't cope and there was raw sewage spouting out the curbside! Just one of the many challenges gladly endured for the cause :)

After 1.5 hours of shocking weather and challenging ascents I was overjoyed to roll into Newhaven at 4pm to take refuge at the Star Cafe where I partook of the chef's speciality of baked spud and beans whilst awaiting my ferry.

Next stop Dieppe!

Photos to follow.