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Touring

The Curmudgeonly Tourer

By
23
April 5, 2013
The Curmudgeonly Tourer

At the risk of sounding churlish and curmudgeonly, I find myself growing a little irritated by the regularity with which I see long-distance bicycle touring associated with fund raising for some cause or another. It is as if the two things were inseparable, as though no one would, could or should contemplate a long...
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An Orcadian Idyll

By
5
August 16, 2012
An Orcadian Idyll

Having just returned last night from Orkney and still feeling a bit wistful about not having been able to take my bicycle along this time and go for a spin on what is after all one of my favourite places in all the world to ride, I thought I’d indulge in a bit of...
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A Trip Down Memory Lane

By
3
August 9, 2012
A Trip Down Memory Lane

It is late in the evening here in Orkney and after a long and convoluted day’s travel I am sitting before an open fire in the cosy parlour of my favourite B&B with a tumbler of Highland Park single malt within easy reach and in a mood of reminiscence. It has been ten years,...
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Stealth Camping

By
10
July 10, 2012
Stealth Camping

One of the questions that was put to me most often when I was cycling through the Australian bush all those years ago was: ‘how do you sleep at night?’ To which I used to answer: “Very well, thank you.” Which was absolutely true. Anyone would sleep well after a hard day’s pedalling a...
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The Kindness of Strangers

By
4
April 18, 2012
The Kindness of Strangers

Even by outback Australia’s legendary standards, the old pearling port of Broome is seriously remote. It sits by itself on a lonely mangrove-fringed coast on the far northwest of the continent, with the steamy emptiness of the Indian Ocean stretching away on one side, and over a million square miles of hostile desert scrub...
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That Randonneur Style

By
6
April 17, 2012
That Randonneur Style

Travel romantic that I am, I’ve always had a soft spot for those old-style French touring bikes, the sort you see in those golden-age-of-cycling photographs – bike and rider all kitted up for distant places on dusty untrammelled roads and projecting either pre-war innocence or sunny, post-war optimism depending on the date of the...
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Bicycle Touring Survival Guide

By
2
February 2, 2012
Bicycle Touring Survival Guide

One of the many nice things I am discovering about the blogosphere is that it can bring you into contact with interesting cyclists whom you might not – in fact, almost certainly wouldn’t – otherwise meet. I am thinking now of Andrew and Friedel Grant, two peripatetic Canadians who have cycled all over the...
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The Wight Stuff

By
0
November 30, 2011
The Wight Stuff

"Isle of Fright!" screamed the page-three headlines in the newspaper that morning announcing the discovery of a new species of 'vicious' flesh-eating dinosaur that had been found embedded in the 120 million year-old cliffs of England's fair and gentle Isle of Wight. Believing this walking nightmare to be the long-elusive great-great-grand-daddy of Tyrannosaurus rex,...
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Pole Position

By
3
November 15, 2011
Pole Position

They call it the sleigh ride: the three-hour flight on a ski-equipped Hercules cargo plane from the U.S. base at McMurdo to that most exotic of Antarctic destinations: the South Pole. Schoolboy keen, I showed up early at the icy airstrip, bundled up, bags packed, eager to go. It was the summer of 2000...
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On Assignment

By
5
November 9, 2011
On Assignment

  In July of 1996 I left my job at Time Magazine and set off to cycle around Australia, unsupported and on my own, free clear and beholden to no-one. Shortly before I left though, I approached the editors of National Geographic, told them my plans, and after due consideration their story approval committee responded...
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