Thursday 4th October 2012 – Day 53

Weymouth – Southampton

75.49 miles

2995 feet climbed

3409 calories burnt

Cumulative miles cycled = 3,150.93 miles

Cumulative feet climbed =172,844 feet

Cumulative calories burnt = 141,967 calories

In all honesty, after today’s ride I’m absolutely shattered and writing this post is taking the last ounce of energy I have, so it may not be the longest.

It was a chilly start to the morning, the sky was beautifully clear and the sun was beaming, pretty much perfect cycling conditions. We wanted to make the most of the sun and relatively flat terrain we were expecting over the day so we got going as soon as we could.

We dropped down into Weymouth and Portland, where the Olympic sailing took place over summer. It looked beautiful bathed in sun, the only problem was as with most of the towns, I can never enjoy it too much as I’m always trying to navigate us through the maze of streets.

After climbing the cliffs towards Preston, Dad and I put pedal to metal and hammered through the miles. We took the A353, then the A352 and on to the A351 before turning on to the B3351 down into Studland to take the ferry across to Sandbanks.

When we turned off on the B3351 we had amazing views of Corfe Castle, we stopped just before it in the park+ride carpark to have a pit stop and I took a couple of photos of the castle, built by William the Conquerer. The B3351 was pretty narrow, with lots of twists and turns and surprisingly busy for the time of day we were on it. I filmed the drop down from the top of the Isle of Purbeck to the ferry as the views out onto Poole Harbour and Poole Bay were absolutely spectacular.

After the ferry, I’d heard a lot about Sandbanks its wealthy residents so I was expecting amazing things, but I was sorely disappointed, it basically looked like an expensive building site, with each property owner trying to outdo their neighbour.

A couple of miles down the road we had lunch in Bournemouth, parked right on the coastal road (next to the BIC) so we could look out to sea whilst eating. The sun was still shining, so whilst eating we decided to try and cycle past Southampton for our evening’s stop.

The afternoon’s ride was stunning, once we’d got off the A337 and into the New Forest, I’d cycled here with friends before so I knew what to expect. We had a relatively flat ride, so again we boshed through the miles. We passed the free roaming cows and ponies on the flats of the New Forest and stopped in Beaulieu for another pitstop. Whilst stopped, we had a lovely chat with a lady about the ride, she was a keen cyclist and her husband cycles the Etape du Tour every year.

After Beaulieu, we covered the rest of the New Forest sharpish and it wasn’t long before we were descending into Hyth to take the ferry across to Southampton. It was a beautiful jetty, about half a mile long out to the ferry. The pier has the world’s oldest pier train and was made of slats that had been dedicated to people.

Whilst crossing from Hythe to Southampton, I rang Mum to clarify where they had found to sleep for the night. It turned out they were at another campsite, Sunnydale Farm about four miles east of Southampton. As we landed the roads were incredibly busy with the early evening traffic, it made it incredibly difficult to navigate through the city roads. I tried to create a short cut, but ended up traipsing us towards a one-way system, instead of round the corner to the Itchen Bridge.

We followed the A3025 all the way along until we found the turning for the campsite, it was a lovely little place with clean facilities and roaming chickens. Dinner was a minced beef curry with rice, and for dessert we mixed things up and had pancakes! As we’re all pretty shattered it was another early night for us all.

Please remember that Kirsty Medlock and her Dad, Stephen are cycling the 4,400 miles round the coast of Britain to raise £10,000 for Clifton’s Children Society (CCS) Adoption, the agency that facilitated an adoption for family friends. Please follow this link to donate as much as you can

Many, many thanks in advance!

One thought on “Thursday 4th October 2012 – Day 53

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