Author Archives: Steve

Room for everyone

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Over on Google+, I recently got into a ‘debate’ with another cyclist who took exception to us walking our dogs on the voies vertes. He was ill-mannered and aggressive, and his arguments, if you can call them that, not worth repeating here. But it did get me thinking about cycling spaces and infrastructure. The ‘rules’ about whether dogs should be on… Read more »

Winter light

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Taking a break from cycling can result in quite a shock when you get back in the saddle. For a variety of dull reasons, I haven’t ridden much lately. Then, just as I was ready to restart, we went on holiday. We took the bikes with us for our week in Brittany, knowing that the weather there is often surprisingly… Read more »

Review: Zéfal Arctica Isotherm water bottle

There’s nothing better than a cold drink on a hot day. And vice versa. Staying hydrated is obviously important. But you also want to feel refreshed on a blazing, dusty summer ride, and comforted with something warm when cycling through the chill of winter. That’s what led me to the Zéfal Arctica Isotherm water bottle. Its shell is a standard… Read more »

Green tunnels

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There are certain sections of the local voies vertes (greenways) that we ride frequently, but they never get boring. Every time is slightly different, depending on weather, light and – above all – season. In Summer, many sections of the voies vertes turn into green tunnels as the overhanging branches of trees fill up and bow down with the weight of their… Read more »

Dream rides

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Cycling gives you a lot of time to think. And given how we often ride around the local countryside almost at random, it also brings you into contact with some unexpected sights. This can be a dangerous mix. Today, riding a road we’d never travelled before, we came face to face with this abandoned mill. It still has its water… Read more »

Finding the time

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One of the great things about the days getting longer is that, even after a full day’s work (or as close to that as I ever get these days) there’s still time to ride. Of course, having slaved over a hot word processor all day, you’d think that I’d be too tired to go cycling. And you’d be right, except… Read more »

Review: Thule EuroPower 916 bike carrier

We had always planned to do a significant amount of our riding on greenways, so we knew we’d need some way of getting to the voies vertes. A bike rack for the car was going to be essential. It quickly became apparent that we were in for an expensive time. The first rack I looked at cost only €40 or so. And… Read more »

Back on the tracks

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It’s been a while since we hit the voie verte, other than a stroll some weeks back without (gasp!) the bikes.  So it was great to be out on the trail again, on such a fantastic spring day and also on a stretch of voie verte we’ve not ridden before. There’s a Eurovélo route (marked EV4 provisoire on my map) that runs… Read more »

Spring light

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We had a lot of rain this winter. That meant grey skies – even more than are usual for Normandy. But now spring is here, and when the skies are clear they are an intense ceramic blue. Today, the More Significant Other and I rode together for the first time in a while. Trish had been out at the monthly… Read more »

Carpe diem

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The day started very dull and with my head buried in work I hadn’t noticed it getting better. Until, that is, the More Significant Other announced, “I’m going for a ride.” I may have muttered something like, “It’s alright for some” – quietly, and only once she was well out of range – then got back to subbing copy about network vulnerabilities… Read more »

Very slow cycling

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We’d meant to go cycling on Christmas Day. Or Boxing Day. But the weather gods had other ideas. And so the New Year came and I was itching to try out my new GoPro (thanks, Santa). Finally, half-way into January, we headed off to ride the Vélo Francette from Domfront. We’ve ridden this route before, although I was on my… Read more »

Taking the time to stop

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Winter has been something of a surprise. It’s been astonishingly rainy, but not that cold. The surprising bit, though, has been how little cycling I’ve done. My first cold in several years has been the main culprit, but also a general disinclination. Normandy can be grey. Lowering skies and low light levels persuade you that being out on the roads… Read more »