(A bit out of sequence, but due to netbook issues, we've only just got Paul's Blog)

The ride from Lostwithiel to Tavistock this morning seemed to be hills all the way, either up or down and my legs were starting to feel tired before our big climb up onto Dartmoor. My left knee also started to complain that it felt it had done enough for the day! Tavistock was a beautiful town but I will also remember it for a recurrance of a stomache problem that I thought I had recovered from at the start of the week. I won't ruin the blog with details but suffice it to say I was never so glad to find some toilet facilities in the Tavistock sports centre & I did not feel to eat anything for lunch, although I managed some drink. Whilst Martin & Ian were picking up their lunch in a Tavistock supermarket I got talking to a local called Bill Styan, and when he heard the details of Martin & Ians ride and their selected charity he donated £10 from his wallet. Thanks Bill.
The ride up to the top of Dartmoor seemed to go on & on but it really is beautiful coujntryside and some clouds covered the sun for a while which provided some respite from the Sun. I stopped in Mortonhampstead & bought a slice of Dartmoor Apple cake which I did not intend to eat but which was a passport to use the cafes customer only toilets. Some miles past there I split from Martin & Ian's route & followed the road to Exeter. I had not checked the route but assumed it would be about 6 miles & mainly downhill. Not so! The first thing I encountered was a hill with a sign saying 16%. I decided that this must be the last hill before my final downhill section & put all my energy into getting to the top. However a short downhill section was followed by another hill at which point I felt I had no energy left. So I stopped & decided that stomache problem or not I needed to eat, so I downed the Dartmoor apple cake & washed it down with a ribena drink Martin had given me. This gave me the energy to complete several more hills over the last 9 miles. Finally I was cycling alongside the river in Exeter and back to the car and the 3 hour drive back to Mytchett.
I'm really glad I got to do this cycling across Cornwall & Devon. Respect & best wishes to my brothers who have many, many hundreds of miles left before them with many many hills.
25/4/2011 06:30:54 am

It sounds as if you had a challenging day, Paul! I'm full of admiration. We missed you at the restaurant last night - maybe we should plan some sort of sibling celebration meal in the future??


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