Thursday, 18 August 2011

The do’s and dont’s of cycling and camping in the New Forest

I be going to the countryside for frolics and a good ol’cycle ride


There is nothing like a great British summer holiday, and what better way to spend one than camping and cycling in one of England’s finest forests.
I spent three days and three nights amongst nature. West-country dialects were rife, cider was plentiful, skies were grey, nights were cold and there wasn’t a riot in sight. Like I said, there is nothing like a Great British summer holiday.  
On reflection of my trip, I have compiled the following list of do’s and don’ts which I think you will find useful if you are ever contemplating a cycle holiday in the New forest. So here we go:
  • Do remember to pack a sleeping bag/jumper/waterproof jacket/shower gel (eh hem... things my boyfriend forgot to pack).
  • Don’t try to use a bike pump to hammer the tent pegs into the ground, this doesn’t work.
  • Do make sure you have lights if you are cycling at night. The new forest is dark...really, really dark.
  • Don’t attempt to cycle through Brockenhurst/Lyndhurst/treehurst/foresthurst/Jemmahurst. There is too much traffic to contemplate, not even the most agile of cyclists can weave through these grid locks.
  • Do mind the ponies. They are the ultimate traffic stoppers with complete disregard to cars and cyclists. They make for a refreshing rest bite to a long bike ride.
  • Don’t ride with your mouth open. A fly for dinner is just not clever Trevor.
  • Don’t use a bike without suspension. Road bikes just don’t cut the mustard on forest terrain.
  • Do make sure that the mountain bike you borrow has an adjustable seat so it doesn’t look like you are riding a BMX for the whole holiday.
With lessons learned, my trip ended today. I left a very soggy campsite to return to an almost as soggy London. Next summer, I would do it all over again.....this time factoring in some of the do’s and don'ts above!

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