Richard Dugdale


Richard Dugdale

I am a retired engineer, born in 1945, who loves cycle touring. I have ridden Lands End John O Groats, C2C, the Three Towers (Blackpool - London -Paris Blackpool), European section of North Sea Cycle Route (Rotterdam to Bergen, 3,500 km), several sportives and trips to Spain and the Alps, Slovenia, Albania, Macedonia, Turkey, Japan, Kerala and Tamil Nadu (India), Vietnam, Cambodia, China, Australia, including Tasmania and New Zealand. Kyushu Japan, USA, Republic of Ireland and Sicily. I ride several sportives each year and ride one day every week with some retired riders and usually lead a group of the Clitheroe Bike Club each Saturday to keep my fitness up to an acceptable level.
In 2010 I became a CTC Holidays and Tours Manager and lead a family camping week in the Cotswolds.
2011 saw me lead a CTC tour of the Lakes and Dales, moving on each day with panniers and a family camping week in the Ribble Valley in August.
2012 saw a tour of the Western Isles of Scotland and a CTC tour to Yunnan Province in China in October. In 20I3 I ran a tour to Slovenia and have toured in Hokkaido, Japan. In 2014 I did another CTC tour of Lakes and Dales and a tour to Yellowstone Park in America in September. 2015 started off with a tour in Tasmania, Kyushu, Japan. In 2016 I led a tour on the Gt Ocean Road, Australia and Honshu Japan, followed by Shikoku Japan and the Republic of Ireland in 2017. 2018 started with a tour of Cambodia, Albania in May and doing Oregon, USA, in September. Cuba In January 2019, followed by two tours in Hokkaido Japan again in June. August saw a two week cycle tour of Shetland and Orkney. In February 2020 I led a second tour of the Great Ocean Road, Australia. In June 2021 after our release from Covid lockdowns and restrictions I led another successful tour of the English Lakes and Dales in brilliant sunshine. For June 2022 I am taking a group of 12 for Bikexplore to Ireland to travel the upper half of the Irish coastline from Galway round to Dublin.

Europe » Ireland » County Dublin » Dublin August 23rd 2022

Ireland the North. Dundalk to Dublin No rain today and a magnificent tail wind. I wouldn’t call it magnificent if it was in our face would I? The Glen Gat in Dundalk was a really good stay and can be recommended. The rooms were good, as was breakfast and the place was stacked with old classy artefacts plus the staff were very helpful. They even demanded a group photo for their Facebook page. The first point on our journey today was Blackrock which is very much like Morecambe Bay with a flat beach with a fast tide and previously a big cockle picking area as shown by the ???? on the promenade. This took us onto the R132 which has a series of long boring straight roads until we reached Castlebellingham where we turned to the ... read more
Glen Gat van
Cockle picker statue

Europe » Ireland » County Louth » Dundalk August 15th 2022

Ireland the North 2. Dundalk An overcast day with better weather than forecast with the odd spitting and a few heavier showers demanding my cape escape its moorings on my rear rack. Quite an uneventful ride through rolling dairy country, although some may say that some of the hills are definitely not rolling. One nice descent was followed by a rumbling sound from my front wheel which was found to be a puncture. Luckily it was not raining and a quick wheel removal showed that it was caused by a thorn, which was duly removed by my teeth since I had no pliers. I got out my spare tube only to find it had a Schrader valve which will not fit. It must have been sent to me by mistake as I never use schrader. Lorna ... read more
Backup vehicle.
Puncture repair

Europe » United Kingdom » Northern Ireland » County Down » Banbridge August 14th 2022

Ireland the North 2. Banbridge Short day with the first 25 miles on cycleways following the coast and the river Lagan until we reached the south side of Lisburn. We had a moment when we encountered a fallen tree across the path and had to dismount and carry the bike over cyclocross style. After the great cycle path we met a small hill which seemed like a mountain after the earlier flat riding. Lorna’s gears were causing problems when we got to Hillsborough so a bit of fine tuning was required after coffee at the Owl and the Pussycat cafe. The rest of the route took us through dairy farmland and what looked like fairly prosperous farms with good farm buildings and modern machinery. The Banville Hotel was found just after lunch and a sandwich at ... read more
Surface algae and beech mast
Boat Club
The peloton

Europe » United Kingdom » Northern Ireland » County Antrim » Belfast August 13th 2022

Ireland the North 2. Belfast Short run today from Larne to Belfast. Cycled past the roundabout in Larne with a large golden crown as a centrepiece. A very sharp and not so short hill out of Glynn made us breath a bit heavily, and someone behind me sounding as if it was their very last breath ever. A bit of undulation in cow country lead us to a very welcome long descent to the A2 at ’Eden’ by the Kilroot power station. A brew was taken at the clock tower cafe in Carrickfergus before moving on to Belfast. Bill made a visit to the recently refurbished Norman Carrickfergus Castle which has been besieged by the Scots, English, Irish and French over the centuries. Belfast was approached using a very pleasant cycleway for several miles to the ... read more
Carrickfergus tank
Carrickfergus castle

Europe » United Kingdom » Northern Ireland » County Antrim » Larne August 12th 2022

Ireland the North. Larne Today was a wonderful run from Ballintoy to Larne starting in the mist and climbing into the sun above Ballycastle. The first big climb took us to Tor Head from where you can see Scotland and the Mull of Kintyre nearby. We were above the mist, which gave the scene a mystical air. The route was very tough with several severe climbs and descents all the way to Cushenden where a coffee and cake was required for further progress to be made without the legs making a transition to floppy rubber. Another hill with appropriate views before a descent to Cushendall and the Folly at the crossroads. After this and a small climb out of the town we were on a flattish route all the way to the port of Larne. Many ... read more

Ireland the North Day 12. Ballintoy Rest day today so only rode 25 miles. One of our group was less fortunate as he became unwell last night and spent today being looked after by the medics. The good news is that he is on the mend and in good spirits. Most of us did different things today but some went to the Dark Hedges near Ballymoney, which some of you may know is an avenue of 250 year old Beech trees. These trees form a canopy over the road and it is where some filming occurred for Game of Thrones and is now viewed by hordes of tourists. Our hotel has a replica throne in the entrance and an intricately carved door with scenes from the series. Ballycastle was another popular destination and two of us ... read more
Field sign
Ballycastle harbour

Ireland the North. Day12 Ballintoy What a wonderful spell of weather we are having. Blue skies and little wind. The coastline north from Portstewart is a Mecca for holiday makers with many attractions for children and golf courses for others. This Antrim coast around Coleraine and Bushmills is also home to the North West 200 motorcycle race held each May on public roads. It is a really amazing place with rocky outcrops, rolling waves crashing onto the headland and a mixture of basalt and white limestone rocks. The waves have eroded some outcrops and formed some tunnels through which the sea is dashing through. Dunluce Castle, whilst in ruins,is quite large and quite photogenic, whilst some others further north like Dunseverick, are in a more dilapidated state. Giants Causeway is quite spectacular, consisting of mostly hexagonal ... read more
Carnalbanagh House
Giants Causeway

Ireland the North.Day11.Portstewart Another good day in Ireland with untypical weather I believe. The first ferry at Rathmullen was a treat to most people and was easy to ride to. The last time we did this tour we took some minor roads only to find that they were very steep and torture to some, so this time we took the easier route which actually gave us a better view of the coastline. Luckily there was a coffee kiosk at the ferry terminal which gave us the necessary caffeine rush ready for our journey up into the hills. What! Hills? There was a long hill over the moors but luckily we had a tail wind which helped somewhat. We met another couple of cyclists up on the moor who told us it was all downhill from there. ... read more

Europe » Ireland » County Donegal » Downings August 8th 2022

Ireland the North Day 9 Downings. The weather is getting better and better with a good forecast for all this week. We were born lucky. At least we weren’t hampered by the hordes of people today that were in Ardara yesterday to attend the ’graveyard mass’ in the nearby churchyard. The Atlantic guest house can be recommended for a self catering stay in Ardara in plush rooms and modern kitchen. The hill heading north straight out of town was a rotten trick hitting us before my legs had warmed up and the gears were working overtime on my Kinesis to cope. Rolling hills were the pattern for much of the day apart from one long hill in Glenveagh National Park with a wonderful descent down the other side with a tail wind. We manage to find ... read more
American traveller.
Lunch stop

Europe » Ireland » County Donegal » Killybegs August 7th 2022

Ireland the North 2 Day 9. Ardara The weather is now treating us well. Sunny for most of the day. A headwind for the first half and then in our favour. We had a snack in Killybegs, which is a big crushing port, but light on cafes open on a Sunday so we ate at a Mace convenience store before travelling along what is one of the most spectacular coastal roads in Ireland. The road went up and down but provided some great views of sandy beaches and rock formations with some roller waves for good measure. Lunch was had outside another convenience store in Carrick in brilliant sunshine. Lunch for Brian was an ice cream - hardly cyclists fare - which may have contributed to his toppling off on a later hill. The hills that ... read more

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