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Camping inside Okehampton Castle.

The Spirit Of Adventure

Oh there you are!

In this edition, I'm focusing on traffic-free cycle routes. In case you weren't aware (and if you didn't know, please tell me what I could have done to have let you know) I have a growing collection of (mostly) traffic-free cycle routes - simply click here to see them all.

But why the focus on traffic-free cycle routes? Aren't cycle tourers supposed to be hardy, tough types? Aren't traffic-free paths for namby-pambys? No, no, and no again, for good measure!

Look, I don't care if you're a hardened commuter who battles it out on the roads daily, mixing with cars in heavy traffic, the fact of the matter is cycling is not supposed to be a survival activity. Cycling is not meant to be only for the fit and the fearless. And above all else, cycling on traffic-free routes is simply SO much nicer!

And after all, cycling is meant to be enjoyable! I've cycled in heavy traffic in Plymouth (dire!), Truro, Bristol and London and I'll tell you now that, whenever reasonably possible, I'd choose a traffic-free route every time.

I don't for a moment believe I'm alone in that. In fact, the idea for traffic-free route guides started as a way for people to choose component routes, to be assembled into longer cycle touring routes. Oh sure - if you go cycle the Camel Trail on a sunny, hot Saturday, during the school summer holidays, it will be so packed that you'd be better off walking your bike. However, when you go cycle a route like that on a less busy day, it's simply bliss.

My traffic-free route guides are searchable by a number of different tags. For example, you could use the second map, to search by area or county. It doesn't stop there, though. You could also search by distance, or even by train line! The train line search is useful for people wanting a car-free day out, as you can see any routes on or close to a particular train line.

May all the trains you want to travel on always have a free bike space!

The Blast From The Past button is quite straightforward: with every edition, I link a random old WillCycle post to it. If you click it, you will see what old WillCycle post it takes you to.
The button will only ever point at WillCycle.

The Good News

Sometimes, the simplest solutions are the very best solutions.
A new non-profit organisation, GiveDirectly, aims to give cash to desperately poor people - no questions asked.
If you can, consider supporting them?

Did You Know...?

If you ever cycled 100 miles in one go, you'll know that it can be a tad tiring. Now imagine doing a 100 mile ride having only one gear - that sounds even tougher, doesn't it?
Now imagine doing it on a unicycle - much tougher again, right?
Well, Sam Wakeling set the unicycle 100 mile speed record on the 9th of July 2015, averaging a blistering 15.9 mph, and completing the 100 miles in six hours, eighteen minutes and thirteen seconds!

What Did You Miss On WillCycle?

River Wey Navigation traffic-free cycle route

River Wey Navigation cycle route overall rating: ⭐⭐ The River Way Navigation links the Thames Path with Guildford, on a mainly traffic-free route. Most of the route is on the towpath, and towpath cycling can be tricky in places. Especially after rain, and in mid-winter, most towpath routes can be very challenging. However, while a stunning route in its own …
Wey Navigation

Why YOU need to limit YOUR travel

Why YOU need to limit YOUR travel
Climate change is real There's no escaping the absolute truth that climate change is real, caused by humans, and accelerating. Equally, there's no escaping the reality that each and every one of us are contributing to climate change. Yes, even you (and definitely me). You do you and I do me Generally, I'm happy for people to be free to …

Showcased products

Coffee Ride cycling cap - coffee coloured

Have YOU been for a Coffee Ride yet this month?
If not, why not?

Coffee Ride cycling cap

CCCP: Cycling + Coffee + Cake = Pleasure

Staying with the theme of coffee. And cake. And cycling!

CCCP: Cycling + Coffee + Cake = Pleasure

Random Internet Link

ASCII is short for American Standard Code for Information Interchange, and is the reason why the characters I typed here are showing up as the same characters you're now reading. ASCII art is the term to describe art created solely from normal text characters.
It used to require incredible skill and patience, but you can easily create your own ASCII art now, simply by uploading a pic to ASCII-art-generator.

Will's Unexpected Bike Hack

If ever you needed to replace a pair of pedals that became seized in place, what you need is heat! This is where your gas camping stove comes in handy. Lie the bike on its side, with the pedal you want to tackle first in the down position (if the bike was upright), then light your gas stove directly below it. Keep the heat on for several minutes. The different expansion rates of the steel of the pedal's axle, and the alloy of the crank, means that the pedal should become unstuck.
Just be careful undoing it, and after you managed to turn it a bit, consider letting it cool down before continuing.

PLEASE NOTE: That was my last Bike Hack. As and when some of you send in your own Bike Hacks, I'll publish them, but I've done all the ones I know, plus a few from some of you.

And Finally...

I spend considerable amounts of time producing The Spirit Of Adventure, and you receive it for free. Please do me a favour and forward it to someone else who you think will appreciate it?

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