Updated: Jan 1
Well, 2022 certainly was an extraordinary year in my cycling life. Taking redundancy from my job and having some time off before the new job meant that I had 4 and a half months of cycling over the summer; that combined with my regular cycling and ride leading both with BCG and with Breeze meant that during 2022 I cycled over 6,500 miles (that’s over 10,000 km) and amazingly - 616 hours in the saddle as well as 2 new bikes added to flock this year! (n+1)
There were so many amazing experiences in 2022, it feels impossible to be able to sum them all up. I'm so glad I started writing my blog in April, this has been a great memory for me so I can relive my experiences.
April - some stunning cycling with Phil in Majorca and doing the Lighthouse ride which is one of the best routes i’ve ever done. Also at the end of April being a ride Angel with my friend Lizzy at the women's ‘Ride the night’ through London was a memorable experience. I also got my cycling qualification this month with our training at London velodrome.
Ride Angel (roving marshal) for the 100km womens ride the night
May - saw my first experience of bikepacking and basically where I fell in love with bike touring. With Liz and Steph cycled from Glasgow to Dumfries over 200 miles along the coastline, mostly on the NCN no 7. Simply stunning, coastline, wild garlic along the roadside which was like a wedding aisle, remote waterfalls and beaches. Also had a fab day away in the Cotswolds with BCG pals.
incredible wild garlic
just one of the beautiful remote beaches
gorgeous Cotswolds villages
June - super busy month. Christina, Steph, Liz and I cycled from Chester to Aberystwyth - 215 miles. So many highlights, Bangor, Conway Bay, Caernarfon Castle, seaside town of Llandudno and the Borth Beast (v.steep!). Then in the last week of June, Christina, Liz and I and I did the off road route of the South Downs way, over 180 miles in total mostly, off road on some very technical challenging yet beautiful trails that took us from Winchester to Beachy Head to Brighton in stunning weather. We also held our Club charity day in June. I have been very honoured to have played a big part in helping my cycling club raise over £4600 this year for a local hospice.
Nant Gwerthyn - stunning Welsh coastline
tackling the Borth Beast!
the white cliffs of the Seven Sisters on south coast
BCG charity fun day
July - a fantastic 5 days with friends up in Yorkshire. We did a combination of off road and road rides including part of the Yorkshire Wolds route taking us to Bempton cliffs – a sea bird spectacular, including puffins and an off road ride along the Cinder trail on the hottest day of the year to Robin Hoods Bay and then a stunning ride through beautiful Millington valley and a top speed that day of 35mph. 5 days of laughs, and cycling fun with wonderful friends.
us at South Dalton Church
the iconic199 steps down to Whitby (famous for its connection with the Dracula novel). This was the hottest day of 2022!
August - one of my favourite rides this year was the Cantii way in Kent, a 150 mile ride with Christina taking in Canterbury, Herne & Whitstable, Ramsgate, Dover and the surreal Dungeness. Miles & miles & miles of coastline. Then we then had a weekend away in the New Forest with both road and off road, visiting Bournemouth & Sandbanks as a bonus. My summer of cycling ended with the most spectacular Coast & Castles route from Newcastle to Edinburgh with Christina. We cycled over 220 miles up the Northumberland coast, Scottish Borders through the Moorfoot Hills into Edinburgh - simply stunning. One of the highlights being cycling over to Holy Island on the causeway and seeing Lindisfarne castle.
Miles of coastline (Kent, Cantii Way)
Lindisfarne Castle on Holy Island
just about to embark on the causeway to Holy Island (have to get over before it floods)
Moorfoot Hills in Scotland
The BCG'rs in Mudeford (took the ferry over from Christchurch)
September – saw me start a new job, although very chuffed to be able to cycle to work. But work didn't mean that I had to stop cycling! Highlights included taking part in a Pride ride and Tyringham sportive which saw Teresa, Susanna and I do an amazing 50 miles through the Bedfordshire countryside.
Finisher medals at Tyringham Sportive
October - a weekend away with Ruth, Teresa and Susanna cycling in Warwickshire and then a women’s sportive in Warwickshire on beautiful roads. Towards the end of October we had the traditional Halloween ride! Where I basically cycled over 45 miles dressed as the Wicked Witch of the West complete with green face.
Women on wheels sportive -65 miles
Halloween ride 🎃👻
November – Saw a very wet, but fun weekend down in Suffolk with Sandy, Lizzy and Ruth as we took part in the ‘Go Wild’ off road sportive which took in parts of the nature reserve of Minsmere. It was by far the wettest and muddiest ride I have ever done. One of the most unusual things I did on the bike this year was with my friend Lizzy as we cycled as a support for the BBC Children in Need Rickshaw challenge which meant riding in a Pudsey outfit around Silverstone F1 race track all while being filmed for BBC Breakfast News. Ended November with a weekend away with Phil down around Cirencester & Cotswolds water park and some beautiful off road routes.
BBC Children in Need event filmed for BBC Breakfast TV
Go wild sportive, Suffolk
December - the theme for December was Christmas, no less than 4 rides just in various Santa outfits including cycling Santa’s, where over 50 of us were dressed up as Santa and a fun ride in the snow with the new MTB.
So many wonderful experiences, it is impossible to pick my favourite. I feel blessed that I have such wonderful friends (especially Christina who I did the most adventures with this year) all who simply just love getting out on two wheels as much as I do. Here’s to a brilliant 2023.