Just back from completing the Devon Coast to Coast ride …a 100 mile trip across Devon, starting from the craggy cliffs of Ilfracombe on the north coast to Plymouth on the south coast – the route uses a mixture of dedicated cycle paths such as the Tarka and Drake’s Trails, quiet minor roads, and some bridleways and a couple of short rocky off-road sections!
We set off early Friday morning despite the atrocious weather forecast with a friend driving us up to Ilfracombe .. setting off at 11am after coffee by the harbour in the wind and rain following cycle paths along the Taw and Torridge estuaries stopping at Instow after 20 wet miles ! We had lunch and dried out at a lovely Deli on the waterfront where morale picked up and by the time we left at 2:30 the rain had stopped and had a better 21 miles to our cosy farmhouse B&B at Sheepwash where we had dinner in the old village pub later..
Day 2- 35miles- weather much better! Sunshine and light showers..
After delicious breakfast we had 16 miles on quiet but hilly country roads to Oakhampton for coffee and then a climb up to join the easy Granite Way crossing the amazing Meldon viaduct, stunning views across the hills in the lovely sunshine! Then on via Lydford gorge, an offroad push for 2 miles, then skirted Dartmoor and into Tavistock staying at the Wetherspoon’s hotel in the centre of the town..very good cheap room and food!
Day 3- 21 dry miles !
An easier day on traffic free trails, across the multi-million pound Gem bridge and through several long tunnels, and into Plymouth along the Drake’s and Plym Valley Trails – A really nice ride in the sunshine arriving at the end of the Coast to Coast route at the Barbican where we had coffee and cakes and celebrated a great few days cycling – highly recommended to all! The route was really well signed and although not too arduous it was made harder carrying more weight with the panniers etc ! Then we caught the train back to Falmouth and were home mid-afternoon.