When life gives you lemons you can suck up the bitterness or head out on an adventure and make life sweet again.
I had plans to go away for a few days at the beginning of August. I was going with a group of people and looking forward to it. When those plans fell through I spent a couple of weeks feeling sorry for myself. Disappointed and a little angry with the way things had gone, it would have been easy to spend that time at home doing nothing.
But that’s just not me!
Time To Plan An Adventure
Feeling sorry for yourself gets you nowhere. It’s natural for us all to do it sometimes and friends and family will always give us a boost. But one thing we shouldn’t do is rely on others to make us feel better. If you want to feel good then it is up to you to take action.
I loved cycle touring in Cuba earlier this year and have been thinking of what my next pannier laden adventure might be. This was the perfect chance to plan one. An idea started to form in my head; I would get a train somewhere in the north of the country and spend a few days cycling back to home.
It took a bit of trial and error to complete the plan. At one point I considered travelling up to Scotland and coming back from there. Money was a factor and trains to Scotland were complicated and expensive. I then hit on the idea of heading to the Lake District. From there I could cycle east, into North Yorkshire before making my way down and across the country.
It Comes Together
Flicking back and forth between the National Rail website and that of the Youth Hostel Association , a route began to form.
I would get a train to Penrith on the Sunday morning and then cycle around 30 miles to YHA Hawkeshead. After a night there I would make my way to YHA Hawes, in North Yorkshire. Looking at the profile of this day, I know it will be tough on the legs. There are going to be some big climbs! The fun bit is that my bike and I will take the Windermere ferry at the start of our day.
Part of the reason I chose to head up north and travel down is it gives me the chance to visit my bestie on my route! Jo lives just outside Leeds and so, as I so often do with her, I invited myself to stay on the Tuesday night. Tuesday will be a longer day in the saddle but, hopefully, with fewer climbs. It will be a great day, if only for the glass(es) of wine with my best friend at the end of it!
I had better be a little careful on the wine as Wednesday will see me travelling down from Leeds to the heart of the Peak District. YHA Youlgreave is to be my host for the night there. My legs are going to be super achy by this point!
The final day of my solo cycling adventure will take me from the Peak District back home. Google maps has kindly given me a rough route for this fab trip. It is calculating a total distance of 263 miles but I am planning on plotting the route myself on Mapometer. This way I can take smaller roads and see more of the stunning areas I will be travelling through.
I am so excited about this now. A disappointment has turned into something wonderful. I know I will gain so much from this week. Travelling through three of the UK’s National Parks, under my own steam, hopefully meeting other adventurers along the way. It is going to be a tough week physically but I will feel a real sense of achievement at the end. Getting to see my best friend and her family is the icing on the cake!
I made lemonade!