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Hello and welcome to a guest blog post.  This post has come from Paul Franklin who got in touch to share his inspirational story of battling through health challenges to live his dreams of bicycle touring.  Lets get started...   “Its just a constant battle; me against my body; my passions and my dreams and what I want to do with my life, against what I’m physically able to do”. Austin Carlile.     My name is Paul Franklin, and close to forty six years ago, I fractured my neck at C3.  It was November 30th 1971 and I had just turned a teenager with so much ahead of me.  I then endured close to two years of wearing a collar, physiotherapy throughout my school years, and little did I know there was so much more to come.  Fast forward to 2000, I was having severe nerve pains and numbness...
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Hands up if you have ever suffered with pain or discomfort in the wrist and hand areas when cycling?   If your hand is in the air, then you will understand how painful and frustrating this can be.  At one end of the scale it can be annoying, with the other end ruining your ride, and even causing you to take time off the bike! Time off the bike is that last thing any of us wants to happen.   So what is all this pain about?   It can manifest itself in different ways; common symptoms are numbness, stiffness, tingling, feeling weak or struggling to hold the bars, and in some cases, just bloody painful!  Sometimes there are reasonable explanations; a longer than usual ride or maybe you haven't been out riding for a long time.  And if that is the case - take it easy and ease your...
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Hello and welcome to a Guest Post from Botond Bócsi from Transylvania, Romania.  Botond has recently setup a new site to help with planning bicycle routes for cycling.  https://bikeroll.net My name is Botond Bócsi from Transylvania, Romania. I like to spend my free time in nature hiking, rock climbing, or biking. Transylvania is the perfect place for my mountain bike with a lot of hills and mountains. Many desolate roads go though small villages where you can rarely encounter any tourists, thus, you can enjoy the local culture and nature.      After biking a few thousands of miles (that is not that much at all if you think about it) I realized that the planning of a bicycle route is more important than one would imagine. Of course with good attitude any bike track can be enjoyed. But as people get older, with more and more miles in their legs,...
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On the late May bank holiday for the past three years, a group of around 200 to 300 people get together to talk about bicycles, listen to engaging stories of amazing cycle touring journeys, learn, eat, sleep, drink a few beers, go cycling and have a bloody good time in the company of like minded people.  It is called the Cycle Touring Festival and I had the pleasure of going this year.  This is what I found.     It was the day before the festival and time had been moving way too fast and I was faced with getting my bicycle and kit ready whilst trying to work from home! I had told myself there would be plenty of time, but as ever that was wishful thinking as I frantically packed my car.  I was leaving later that evening and was picking up another attendee on route, who had...
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Hello and welcome to a guest blog post from Stephanie Lindqvist. Stephanie went on an awesome bike tour to USA & Canada, and has started to write a blog all about it. This post is all about getting out there and exploring the World by bicycle!     ”You did WHAT?” Yes, most members of the bike touring family will get this phrase thrown at us at least 100 times in a lifetime, it’s a fact. What we do - ride our two-wheeled besties across landscapes, countries and continents - is obviously not the first thing normal people would associate with the term ’holiday’. Adding up the number of times I’ve been asked to explain the phenomenon of bike touring, it would have been more efficient to record myself repeatedly saying ”it’s not that far” or ”no you don’t need to be in great shape, I barely moved my butt...
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  I think of myself as rather fortunate to live in the South West of England. Perfect for cycle touring with being nicely placed in between two awesome National Parks; Dartmoor and Exmoor. With the bits in between filled with endless country roads and superb views from all directions. I have the luxury of heading in any direction for a cracking local ride, and if I want to go further, I hop on the train. And on this occasion, my target was Dartmoor for a couple of days chilled out riding.     Hopping out of bed early, I had that feeling of not being entirely prepared for this trip, which is completely out of character for me. After a busy week at work, I needed to get away for a couple of days, and instead of preparing the night before I did my best to finish my work to...
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I'm very excited to announce a great new service from Cycling Touring Community.  Local Bicycle Touring Leaders.    What is it all about? We are building a network of cyclists, ready to meet up and help other cyclists visiting their local area as part of a cycle tour, or even a simple bike ride. It is about meeting up, going cycling and showing people your local area. The local leader has the opportunity to help, meet new people, have fun, and become part of a bicycle tour. And the visiting cyclist get their own local guide! It is a simple service to use. People register their details and a location nearby (no home or personal addresses), which in turn creates a pin on a map. People visiting the area who want to meet up, Click a Pin on our interactive map, read the details, and if they would like to get...
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Hello and welcome to a guest blog post from Robin Brodsky. Robin went on an awesome bike tour to Baja, California, following the popular Baja Divide route. This blog post tells her story of the highs and the lows of a truly epic cycle ride through the fantastic landscape this part of the world has to offer. This ride is now on my wish list!  Check out https://bajadivide.com/route-details/history/ for more information about the Baja Divide.     Lets get started...     1700 Miles of Bliss and Brutality What a great ride! It was beautiful and it was painful. Some of the road surfaces were so rough, I started having pain at the base of my skull from the vibration. My head felt like my brain was dropped into a blender and my arms like I'd been using a jack hammer all day. That’s when I got off the bike and...
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