Cycling in France

Aiming to take the campervan to France this year. Potential main cycling routes… no info yet on the Routes Vertes or the VeloRoutes. (BdS references are to Baie de Somme)

Honfleur to Deauville – 1 hour

Honfleur to Rouen – 4.5 hours

Dieppe to Rouen – 3.5 hours

BdS to Dieppe – 3 hours

Calais to Gravelines – 1 hour

Le Touquet to Dieppe – 6 hours

Calais to Dieppe – 9 hours

Calais to Le Touquet – 4 hours

BaieDeSomme to Amiens – 3.5 hours

Useful motoring maps



Bikes: seized gear cables

The aim was to get the 3 gears on the big cog working. Somewhere between gear lever and er the thing that moves the cogs, something was seized. The most I can say is I learned a lot. I probably need to buy new gear cables and “outers”, which are the sleeve surrounding the wire at certain points, but for right now, at least having 2 of the 3 gears working on the big cog is enough. This by the way is my city/hybrid bike – my road bike does not have 10 or so years of grime between any gear cables and the outer. I am done for this weekend.


Bikes: So I got a road bike…

… primarily because it was just disheartening (almost literally, as on the harder climbs it indeed felt as though my heart was ready to burst out of my chest) to see Jan climbing away effortlessly up the hills on her road bike.

I got this:


Apart from certain irritants such as the cheapness of the toe grips and the reflector on the pedals falling off on the first trip, it’s a great bike, particularly given the combination of the various discounts.

This is the route we took yesterday, with a half pint and crisps at the Fox Inn in Ellisfield


A bit more on the bike – I was torn between whether to get the 55.5 or the 57.5 frame. Why wasn’t I sure? Well, Halfords is understandably in the game mostly of shifting boxes – there was not a single bike, regardless of make, that was available for me to try out on a 57.5 frame. And of course, the “try-out” consisted of weaving in low gear between all the customers in a busy shop. But on the up-side, they put the bike together quickly, it is a very good price, I think, and it is great fun to ride, given it is way lighter than my existing hybrid bike, which still has a purpose, as it can carry paniers, go across rougher terrain… neither of which I will be doing on this one.

BMPics01 BMSpecs01


Robert had asked me how much the bike weighs: by standing on the scales with and without the bike a number of times, I got this answer: 10.5 kilos