Day 3 – Tiverton to Chepstow

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Mike: People have said Day 3 is the hardest. In some ways I agree although not through the fatigue perspective, more from the 86 miles all into the wind, which included a few 8% hills which were more than 3 miles long.

We started in Tiverton, and were not looking forward to more of yesterday’s hills.  We were pleasantly surprised by miles and miles of almost flat road (busy dual carriageway but we cant have everything).

There were a few hills between Wellington and Taunton but we progressed to Highbridge in plenty of time for lunch.  We got there, found a bike shop, got Derek’s bike fixed (Derek will say more) and met with Phil and Maddy (wifey).  We rode on to Burnham on Sea and had Fish & Chips on the beach.  Phil got himself in trouble by walking down the beach to the “sea”.  The lifeguard was then promptly on his megaphone telling him to come away from the water.

This afternoon’s journey from Burnham to Chepstow was a long haul but we arrived by 6.30 to a small welcoming committee

In terms of stats, we averaged 13 miles per hour, which considering the wind was okay.  My bike computer went a bit haywire and told me that my max speed was 934 mph (I think it was probably about 32!).

So, long day, tired but reasonably pleased.  As long as the muscles work tomorrow we shall be fine!….

Derek: I was quite apprehensive about today – as Mike mentioned, everyone said that Day 3 was the hardest. From a terrain and distance perspective, I don’t think it was a problem – but I’d describe today as a breeze. Unfortunately, all the breeze was heading towards us head-on. This slowed us down quite a bit. Despite that, the morning was a good, and we arrived at our lunch stop ahead of time. 

This was a good job as I was having a few ickle problems today. Firstly, my cycling sunglasses somehow got snapped, and secondly I couldn’t get the bike onto the top chain-ring. We found a fantastic little bike shop at Highbridge who fixed this for me, for free! I also managed to pick-up a new pair of glasses to boot.

The lunch on the beach was fantastic – good ol’ fish n chips. This was made even better by Phil getting told off by the life guards. 

Once we set of, and then found our way (with the help of sat nav and a local passer by), we headed-off towards Bristol. This was a looooong hard slog – especially the killer hill for the 2-3 miles up to the airport. The descent from there was fantastic, but we were slowed again by the wind – we should have got 40-45mph, but could only manage about 30.

The good news is that we consider today to have been a major milestone as we’re now in Wales and have escaped the Devon and Cornwall hills. Can’t wait till tomorrow!  

Beer of the day: Brains SA – apparently they sponsor the Welsh rugby team. Maddy (Mike’s wife) says it’s a bit weak. Mike Wood’s head after two pints has a differing view. Mike M says it’s deceptively drinkable.

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