Last summer I spent three weeks cycle touring in France, following my own version of the Raid Pyreneean and continuing along the Mediterranean coast and up to the centre of France. This year I’m heading to North America for a ride from Montreal to New York, stopping for the wedding of two dear friends in Ludlow, Vermont.
Solo cycle touring is fun but for me, there’s a time, usually at the end of the day’s riding when you’ve pitched camp and are just enjoying the last rays of sunshine, taking care of any little chores and thinking about getting some supper organised, where it can sometimes feel a bit odd being alone. Last year during those hours of the day I averted the lonesome feeling by listening to spoken word radio on the iPod. It was a mixed bag but primarily BBC Radio 4’s In Our Time, This American Life and RadioLab (both from US public radio networks).
This summer I want to freshen up the mix and am going to add in some Philosophy Bites and some Speechification. What else should I be downloading in the two days before I fly? Please add your top picks in the comments…
And please, while flattery will get you anywhere, don’t suggest The Bike Show. That way lies insanity.
Yes, it’s true. The Bike Show is mostly communicating by Twitter. Apart from being on the radio once a week, of course. @thebikeshow
Are you finding ways to use Twitter to add to your bicycling fun? Please tell! I’m finding it really good for finding out when Ivan Basso is going to bed and which of Lance Armstrong’s bikes has just been stolen. There must be more…
Photo by curiouslypersistent, Creative Commons license
Listeners to The Bike Show in Canada, Minnesota and Norway will no doubt be amused to hear that half a foot of snow is enough to bring London and the south east of England to a standstill
. An overnight cycle tour in Kent and Sussex has turned into something more like a vacation as I’ve been stuck high up on the Weald, roads icy and impassable for bicycles (at least, my bicycle) and all trains canceled until further notice. This has kept me from my usual Monday evening appointment with the radio studio.
As a result the interview with Bike Snob NYC that I had store for this week’s show will be broadcast next Monday. FM radio listeners were treated to a repeat of the second half of Alastair Humphrey’s epic round-the-world ride, featuring a detailed account of fixing punctures in the Siberian winter, at temperatures of minus 40 Celsius that is enough to make even the hardiest Mid-West winter cyclist shiver. Online listeners can refresh their memories over here.
After a restorative break, the show returns to the airwaves for the 2009 season at 6.30pm on Monday, 26 January. Tune in live at 104.4fm in central London or Resonance FM’s web stream. Or via the podcast. To subscribe via iTunes, click here.
The show will feature a Northumberland coastal ride with Daniel Start, author of 2008 best-seller Wild Swimming.
Update: Owing to technical ineptitude the podcast edition of the show will not be online until the early evening of Tuesday 27 January.
One of the advantages of being off air for a while is more time to get out and about, for instance, a quick trip sous la Manche to watch the 2008 Paris-Roubaix, the Queen of the Classics. Just shy of 260 kilometers, with around 55 kilometers over the brutal pavÃ© (cobblestone farm tracks) of northern France. Camera: Andy Curry, William Greswell.
And a few stills:
If all this makes you want to test yourself on the toughest single day course in cycle racing, the Paris-Roubaix cyclo-sportive on 8 June is still accepting entries.
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