Day Three, Olveston Bristol to Stafford, 193 km, 120 miles

Roy has suffered a series of punctures today (4) resulting in him running out of inner tubes with a mashed tyre early this evening and me needing to arrange alternative accommodation for tonight and locating a bike shop for tomorrow.  I think we have it in hand, but needless to say it has been a fraught evening.  I have pasted the blog to where we got to late this pm, and will try and fill in more details tomorrow.

07:36 Eating breakfast here.  Already feeling tired though.  Hoping food will revive me…

08:03 Finished breakfast and off in 10.  Feeling v tired already.  Hayfever not good.

08:25 On the road.  Good luck.  To you that is…

08:37 First fox sighting

09:32 Sharpness Canal – widest in Europe when built

09:53 20 miles.  Stopped at a swing bridge crossing.  First time for everything I suppose!

09:58 Good so far but now on stretch of tow path that is just grass.  V slow

10:04 Found a dirt strip now – as wide as my tyre

10:36 back on proper path.  Think dead bodies did me a favour last time!  All the bit I missed was really rough  When Roy rode this part of the canal last year the canal path was closed by the police because a dead body had been found in the canal.  Roy had to divert around and missed this grass and mud section.

10:57 Sainsbury in Gloucester.  28 miles

11:45 Now in, literally, Ashleworth tithe barn

11:50 Goat and pony friends not here for a chat today.  Last trip Roy stopped for a chat with a goat and a pony just around the corner from the tithe barn.

12:53 49 miles.  White rabbit.  He’s a bit overgrown – would have missed him if I didn’t know he was here. Stopped for traditional wee and chat.

13:16 Just beautiful through here.  Don’t remember it much from last time. Passing through lots of quintessential English villages. Sunny.  Green. Welsh mountains (Brecon Beacons?) in back ground.

13:47 (Phone call) Planned to re-route to avoid track but sat nav not picked up re-routing so picked up same track.  Pushed through but v muddy. Got muddier and muddier on slick tyres. Deeper and deeper until became really mired. Then foot down.  Then push thru.  Brakes, gears, wheels all mired in mud.  Luckily there was a house at the end with a hose.  Knocked on door and hosed down bike (and myself). Got rid of thick mud.  Gears not working now.  Calling from just under the M5 – 55 miles in.  Now back to standard 10 mph.

14:32 Worcester 62 miles

15:43 77 miles somewhere before Kidderminster.  V hot

16:15 Drinking lots.  At church in Kiddeminster. Well, at lock by church – not praying for deliverance.  Yet.  83 miles.  Am I really half way through England?  Cool!

16:22 Bloody puncture!

16:38 Might go back for a pray.  Still, only 27 cm to Scotland…(I can explain….you need a ruler and wall map…)

18:25 Another puncture – only one inner tube left

18:47 Another puncture….  somewhere on A449 (lethal road), north of Kidderminster, south of Stafford…. 151 km in (out of 193 km)

He clearly didn’t go back to pray!

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