What was your reason for wanting to ride the Trafalgar Way?
I was looking for something to do, I watched one of the GCN videos with Si Richardson doing an Audax and he said just to sign up. Either he or someone else mentioned the RTTW and it looked like an iconic route and so I signed up for it
How would you sum up your ride of the Trafalgar Way to a friend?
A great ride - even immediately afterwards I don’t recall it feeling particularly long or particularly hilly although it was clearly both. Felt like a ride very much in two parts: first Falmouth to Salisbury felt like a “normal” (but long) weekend ride broadly through lovely countryside; second Salisbury to London in the dark felt like a bit of a slog riding in a little bubble of light and watching the Garmin toensure the sub-24 remained on.
What was your most memorable part of the ride?
A few points stick in the memory. Main one being coming up the hill to see the sea, Chesil Beach and Portland open up in front of me. As a (rock) climber this had multiple motivations and memories and it was a beautiful day at this point and I felt great.
What are your top 3 tips for anyone thinking of riding the Trafalgar Way?
- Rest, fuel and hydrate in the days running up to the start.
- Plan to stop on a few occasions between the controls in order to fill bottles including with neat water. I pretty much rode non-stop between controls and I only drank 6 bidons (of electrolyte) + 1 pint of Coke + 1 coffee during the ride. I should probably have drunk more like 20 bidons and I suffered in the week after the ride due to this.
- Don’t worry about the speed or be intimidated by the distance but make sure to get plenty of time in the saddle. Longest ride I’d done in the run up was 280km which was plenty but I had ridden more than 6,000km in the 6 months leading up to the ride.
What are your top bits of equipment or kit you wouldn’t want to ride the Trafalgar Way without?
- My Garmin with its extra battery (Garmin Charge).
- A “cockpit” mounted bag for trail mix and other snacks.
- A third, which goes without saying, is a well serviced and smoothly running bike (with lights!).
What bike (make and model) and chainset / cassette set up did you ride the Trafalgar Way with (if available)?
Parlee Z0 with a 2x11 compact setup: 50x34 / 11-28