Wednesday, 6 June 2012

Day 6: Aberystwyth to Abersoch

Another cracker of a day. It began with one of the best send offs we have had yet- a warm bacon baguette brought to the station by Gem who was also kind enough to cook supper for us (with Emily) and 12 other crew members last night.

We were also joined by Ian, another crew member, paramedic and keen cyclist, for the first 40km of today's ride and it was great fun to have the company. Using his in depth local knowledge, he navigated us to our first station in Borth via a much flatter route than we had planned which given yesterday's issues with me being stuck in one gear was a welcome change of plan!

While cycling as a three, we chatted about the local area, and living by the coast and the more I hear about it the more I am looking forward to living by the sea. This trip is such a great way to meet people from all over the country, and normally they are so friendly- which makes sense- idiots generally don't volunteer to be crew of the local RNLI station!

A few kilometers past Borth we arrived at the edge of the Coed-y-Glyn Eestuary- we could see the other side a few hundred meters away where our next station (Aberdovey) was situated but between us and that was either a cold swim or a 20km detour to the nearest bridge- we opted to cycle... just.
Ian left us at the bridge to make his way home and have a sleep before his nightshift and Nick and I ploughed on, into an increasingly strong headwind.... it also began to rain, which was fun. The views of the estuary kept us motivated and before long we were chatting to the local helmsman at Aberdovey, who rather frustratedly informed us that if he has not been imminently required at a wedding would have loved to have joined us- we presumed he was a guest.

The coastal road from Aberdovey to Barmouth (over a railway bridge but a shame about the rather tacky town) and onto Criccieth (far nicer) was simply spectacular. I think it was one of the best cycling routes we have done on the RNLI Tour of Britain yet!

The road divided the Snowdonia National Park and the Irish sea. It's almost perfect tarmac gently undulated and we witnessed rainclouds sweeping accross the skyline accompanied by their dark shadows. The breaks in the cloud would allow for some fantastic crepuscular light shows. Truly memorable.

With two stations still to do- Pwllheli and Abersoch- we could not afford much time off the bikes but we did managed to carve a slot into our schedule to taste the 'world famous' (I'd never heard of it) Cadwalader's ice cream. I must confess the natural yoghurt flavour with an extra fudge stick was arguably better than the views of the Irish Sea!
By now we just wanted to finish for the day so we got our heads down and did the last 20km in just under an hour, including a photo outside the stations. We were let into the Abersoch Station and kindly given a key and some local advice on restaurants. All that was left was to wash- made harder by the fact the station had no shower- but a (very) cold hosepipe provided a 'refreshing' alternative.

We're both happy with today- 6 stations visitted, plenty of miles done with some spectacular views to remember. Tomorrow is supposed to be wet and windy (again) so if you're anywhere near the Lleyn Peninsula and see two wet cyclists please offer them a cup of tea.

1 comment:

  1. Was great to meet you and ride with you both. Good luck for the rest of the ride, enjoy your rest day tomorrow!

    PS Rad-good luck for 2 weeks time...It's an awesome day and life afterwards is equally as great!!