Dave Cross

Big Dave C

Dave Cross

Why oh why did I ever suggest it?!! Conversation had dried up so I just blurted it out!! Wouldn't it be fun to cycle to the apartment? "So what?", I hear you say. But home is Paddock Wood in Kent, and the aforementioned apartment is in Altea on the Costa Blanca in Spain. That throw-away comment early in 2010 was picked up on by my brother-in-law - Jim - and so it is that on Saturday 14 May 2011 we will set out to ride the 1,000+ miles.

Should be a stroll in the park.......

We awoke to a wet morning - our first of the trip. Took our time over breakfast in the hope that the rain might stop before we set off - but it was not to be! Took our bikes from the hotel lounge, loaded up, and set off for our short ride down to Altea La Vella. Knowing the roads, we were a bit apprehensive about the climb up to Benissa, but we're either a lot fitter now, or they've flattened the road out!! Took a coffee stop in Benissa, and phoned to to make sure we could get hold of a key to the apartment. Before we left the UK Adele had said about taking a key, but I was convinced that we wouldn't beat her out here!!! Fortunately I managed to organise the key, ... read more
Nearly there!

Europe » Spain May 31st 2011

Breakfast today was huge, the benefit of staying in a more expensive hotel. Eggs & bacon! So later hitting the road. A sunny morning with the roads quiet & flat. Many old guys on bikes passed with the aid of a tail wind. Via Cullera on minor road Gandia was reached after 27 miles. Time for coffee. The wrong road was taken with the result being a ride through the town centre. After this they hit the N332 to Oliva, plenty of prostitutes on the road sides some “pant less”. The coast road took in Denia & the Els Poblets for lunch. Now hot. Decided to ride on to Javea for the night stop via cold drinks in a petrol station. Arrived at 4.15pm. Booked into the Mirimar hotel on the seafront. Bikes stored in the ... read more
Valencian paddy fields
A small roadside coffee shop on the way to Borriana!
Our worst night .. sleeping with our bikes at Huesca!!

Europe » Spain May 30th 2011

The boys had a leisurely start having breakfast at the hotel and the morning also brought bright weather as they cycled to the coast along lovely flat roads. After this they picked up the N340 which had an excellent road surface and a cycle lane which led them to Sagunt town which had a lovely, interesting castle and they had a coffee by the station and that is where all the fun started. As they followed the road out of town all possible routes led to motorways so they had to head back to the town and look at the map and eventually decided to head towards the port which led them to a huge industrial estate plot. They followed through the plot and encountered increasing amounts of barriers to the extent that they had to ... read more

Europe » Spain May 29th 2011

Started the days riding at 8.20am on a cloudy & overcast day. First 15 miles slightly downhill so set a new PB doing 15 miles in the 1st hour. The coffee stop was not so easy being a Sunday morning. Had to wait 26 miles until Cabanes which had a warehouse size buffet restaurant & even though they were setting up for day they still provided refreshments. As before in the trip the road turned into a motorway but this time the more sensible approach prevailed & an alternative route was found via a small country road. Then a chance meeting with a cyclist put the boys onto a decent cycle path that tacked the motorway. A little later they road with 2 Spanish cyclist until a cross roads that took the boys on for 18 ... read more

Europe » Spain May 28th 2011

Lie in didn’t get up until 7.15am. At last night’s check in they mentioned a wedding today. Guests in the hotel & outside but assume not to see the boys off. Overcast day with a brief downhill start then a long climb to Port de Torre Miro at 1204 metres. New road so surface very good. Then dropped down to Morella (sort of town to visit again stunning castle, aqueduct & city wall). At coffee met 3 other touring cyclists all Dutch. Older couple cycled from Lyon heading to Saville then to Santander & the home to Holland. A 3 month camping trip. The other being a chap who had cycled up from Marbella heading home via brothers place in France. Has to be home by August. From there easier climb to Port de Querd at ... read more

Europe » Spain May 27th 2011

Up early on the road at 7.40am with a change of weather, now overcast & windy. 1st part of the day through level/boring farmland. Not sure what that had been spreading but happy to put that behind. After a while dropped to a different level to reach the river Ebro. The river was dammed nearby so a wide expanse & from there climbed up the other side to reach the original target of Alcaniz at 11.00am. Bearing in mind the next day is 60 miles with climbs decided to put in some more miles today. Helpful girl in the tourist office booked accommodation in Monroyo about 22 miles further on. Had lunch in Alcaniz & then set off at 1.20pm to do the additional miles. In Alcaniz locked the bikes to a street sign. Looked back ... read more

Europe » Spain May 26th 2011

The boys decided on an early start today to avoid the hot weather. They set of at 7.30am only to go off in the wrong direction. Luckily this only added about an extra mile or two. The terrain started as flat farmland & after a tea break on 33 miles at Sarinena the road gently climbed to a gap in the hills. Through the gap the last miles took them gently downhill to the finish at 1.15pm. The day turned out to be hot with the finish town being on a main road junction. Both agreed the main road in the town which headed East- West carried more large lorries than either had ever seen. However they are not really sure on their destination. Days miles 56.6 total miles 692.4. Ascent 1848 feet total ascent 34,153 ... read more

Europe » Spain May 25th 2011

The two were out on the road by 8.25 am and left the town onto the main road which led to a minor road which led to a long unwelcome climb however they were back down to the main road after about 16 miles. They then stopped for a drink at a chocolate shop where they had a cold chocolate drink. Although a cup of tea would have been preferred. The chap at the tourist information said that there was a mountain pass between Jaca and Huesca however this didn’t go down well after the Pyrenees. They then left the chocolate shop and began to climb for about 7 miles. The views were very good and required a photo stop. They then had lunch at a shady picnic site and began the descent which included a ... read more

Europe » Spain May 24th 2011

The brave two were up and out by 8.30 and they both agreed that they were slightly apprehensive about the day’s events to come. It was overcast and cool for the first 5 miles which were fairly level despite having a small climb. However the journey continued to climb and drop which was not well received as they were already anticipating the later climb. They then entered a narrow gorge from the wide plane that they were previously on, which then opened out a bit. They had a drink break after 15 miles, then the climbing began in earnest. The climb was steady but relentless, though the surface was smooth and quiet, there were a couple of photo stops on the way up. After about 30 miles the main road then went into a tunnel that ... read more

Europe » France May 23rd 2011

Rest Day. The two went down for breakfast on their rest day to find that their bikes weren’t where they left them, however they had been tucked away somewhere by the owner. So panic over! They then went to the tourist information and went round to various tourist points around the town where, using a special watch you can hear information about the town. They then sat outside the cathedral to have a cup of tea, just as a beaten up Renault 5 drove straight into the railings opposite. Also the cafe they had sat in appeared to be owned by a distant relation of Al Murray. They then returned to the Tourist information to see if there was an internet cafe, however after finding the library as recommended they were informed the library was closed ... read more

Tot: 0.239s; Tpl: 0.005s; cc: 8; qc: 85; dbt: 0.1625s; 1; m:domysql w:travelblog (; sld: 1; ; mem: 1.2mb