I have to be honest with you as I'm not an expert cyclist. But I have ridden from Land’s End to John O’Groats on 2 occasions (20 years apart).
The first attempt was undertaken with little planning, resulting in a thirteen day adventure across Britain with two friends, Alan and Nick.
The journey became the catalyst that helped change my life for the better and also shaped Alan's future in a way he never envisaged when we set off one summers day from Land’s End.
This is why I decided to write a travel book about cycling from Land's End to John O'Groats.
Since its publication, the positive feedback from numerous readers has been heart-warming and I am currently writing an account of the second trip, which occurred many years later.
With regards to the first bike ride, I have added the prologue, which I hope you’ll enjoy.
I never noticed the first cloud, or the second, but the third was hard to ignore. Just how they had eluded us was something of a mystery. I stopped pedalling, and for the first time in an hour, looked up from the road to study the sky. The hazy blue that we had cycled beneath all morning was being displaced by a band of pale clouds sweeping down from the north. With each mile that we travelled, they gathered strength and loomed ominously on the horizon, turning dark and moody as the border approached.
By mid-afternoon, they were closing in on all sides, akin to the pincer movement of attacking Zulus. The black clouds resembled the head and horns of a mighty bull, and we were heading straight into their midst. Cars refused to slow and hurtled close by, just as the first bolt of lightning pierced the sky.
I dropped to the rear of the pack, stared through the gloom at Nick’s luminous yellow poncho, and wiped raindrops from my face. Alan was out there somewhere too, his khaki poncho rendering him invisible against the English countryside. Cocooned inside my poncho, I concentrated solely on keeping the handlebars straight, as articulated lorries roared alongside. We were halfway between Land’s End and John O’Groats, and within two hours, one of our lives would be changed forever.