This week a good friend from work joined me for a bike ride in the New Forest.
We set off early to beat the rush on Saturday, arriving in Brockenhurst for 10am and setting off with some fresh rental bikes 20 minutes later.
I haven’t cycled in a while so it didn’t take long for this to happen:
New Forest is 2 hours drive from London and is touted as one of the UK’s largest areas of pasture, heath and forest land – an exciting place to explore.
The rental shop had given me some laminated instructions that were velcro’d to my handlebars. These were a bit like reading an interactive game book, where each turn had a consequence whichever choice I made – although I might be being dramatic.
The paths through the New Forest all seemed bike friendly and there were many other cyclists and the sound of busy road traffic everywhere we went. Which is a shame, but it’s still a good looking place:
Our goal was to cycle to a place called Burley, stop for lunch and complete the circle back around to Brockenhurst before heading home.
Burley is a lovely little town, with a few nice looking pubs and (bizaarely, but actually quite common for the UK) a witchcraft shop.
We found a cute cafe called the Cider Pantry for lunch, had a tasty burger with hand cut chips and poked around their really sweet little cider shop that sells home made ciders and apple juice… Also available at Borough Market
Hopping back in the saddle, we got temporarily lost and stopped another cyclist to ask if they knew where we were, casually dropping in that we were on a 21 mile bike ride (so that he knew we were serious athletes, not simple amateurs).
After he pointed out that we weren’t lost at all, and that our 21 miles was his warm up for the 60 miles that he had cycled that day, we pedalled off in the (still) right direction and began the last stretch of our journey.
A little while later, we passed through the west-end:
Before arriving back at the rental shop and taking our sore bums back to the car.
Oh and it wouldn’t be a trip to the new forest without a picture of the wild horses:
I’m doing a charity fundraising challenge in August to raise money for CALM – Campaign Against Living Miserably – a charity that is dedicated to providing support for men with mental health issues. To find out more, please visit: https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/conquerthetwatts and donate where possible.