Spanish Bikepacking Diary – Day 9

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Before tucking into this diary entry, I’d like to thank all of you for the kind words on this series. Sometimes I wonder if anyone is really interested in how…

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Amanda Wishart

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Amanda is our resident pedaller, who loves the climbs as much as the descents. No genre of biking is turned down, though she is happiest when at the top of a mountain with a wild descent ahead of her. If you ever want a chat about concussion recovery, dealing with a Womb of Doom or how best to fuel an endurance XC race, she's the one to email.

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  • Spanish Bikepacking Diary – Day 9
  • ampthill
    Full Member

    Yep definitely interested. I’m 57. In my 20s I did this sort of thing. Although I never averaged 25km/h. One day in New Zealand we did 24km/h but that was basically sailing on a tail wind.

    It’s good to be reminded that these things aren’t easy.

    Now the children are grown and my body is basically working i want to get back to this sort of thing. Well in a small way I have but I need to do more.

    Back shout out it to my 25 year old niece who has been talking about bike packing for years. Last time I saw her she borrowed a stove. A few days later she loaded up her ancient rim brakes tourer with old school panniers and got the train to Oban. She cycled up through the out Hebrides wild camping on the beaches on her own, escaping occasionally to hostels. That was her first trip

    Full Member

    We used to go touring in the UK and some days could appear endless. Chapeau to Amanda and Rhys for actually getting out there and doing it. It’s been a great series of articles and it’s inspired me to think about dragging my aged bones out for a another tour.

    Well done!

    Full Member

    That’s some angry looking storm you were running from…

    I’m interested and also appreciate some honesty in this!

    We spent last weekend touring for three days in the Moray Triangle.

    First day, in 28*c heat, we all looked at the Topo and missed the ‘wee kicks’ at the end of the day. One bike nearly got thrown in the bushes on one of them and another one a local farmer complemented one of our party on the expression she put into the expletive laden objection to the last hill of the day….

    Day 2 was just a stiff headwind for most of the day, and we seemed to be on a road that when I’ve driven it I was the only thing moving, but on this day seemed to be the only road available to any vehicle in Moray…

    Day 3 involved an incident involving one of our party being mid-pee when she heard someone else discover a tick gained from thier visit to the back of the gorse a minute earlier…cue much panic and near nudity, followed by all toilet stops following being performed in the middle of the trail while others kept watch for other approaching trail users…

    But, it was a fabulous three days, fabulous company, much laughter and great riding between the stresses.

    Full Member

    Sometimes I wonder if anyone is really interested in how I spend my time off, but my honesty about bikepacking and riding long distance seems to be quite valuable.

    Yes, because you tell a good (and often humourous) story 🙂

    Full Member

    Luv your diary and only wish it would be published without long time gaps, I keep thinking I must have missed an episode! Good honest description of the rides and you don’t need to do a multi-day trip to go through phases of pain or self doubt. There can be ups and downs on every ride. A recent 5 hour ride around in the Wiltshire downs in very hot/humid weather had me wondering why I was there, will this f*cking hill never end? why am at the back of the group again? how far is it now to the cafe stop? Then we did a downhill section to the cafe, had ice cream, tea, cake, the world was ok again and the rest of ride was not quite a breeze, but definitely a much more pleasant experience. The last few climbs were fine and the descent back to the car (and its air con!) was brilliant.

    Well done Amanda

    Free Member

    A few days later she loaded up her ancient rim brakes tourer with old school panniers and got the train to Oban

    This is the best thing about touring imo, that it’s the least about the bike aspect of cycling. Although people still obsess over gear as long as something works it matters very little as it’s your charter that make the trip a success.

    If she enjoyed that trip she should check out this book for some inspiration of routes.

    Exploring Scottish Hill tacks

    Full Member

    Spain has some quite desolate badlands stretches doesn’t it? Not great when you’re tired ..


    This is the best thing about touring imo, that it’s the least about the bike aspect of cycling.

    So true.. Sometimes I wonder if bikepacking + ‘gravel’ appeared so the bike trade could make it about the bike again.

    Run what ya brung.. for the most interesting routes there’s no perfect bike.

    Full Member

    Love this series!

    It’s even made me raise bikepacking across Europe on a tandem with my wife (she isn’t a cyclist).

    Looking forward to rest of the adventure, warts and all.


    Full Member


    I’m another one vicariously following your adventure. I wish Mrs Vlad was as adventurous…

    Full Member

    Loving the reports – I’m a fan of good and honest cycle touring books and I reckon the extended vetsion of this series would be a good read.

    Full Member

    I’ve really enjoyed this diary Amanda as it’s an honest account in a country I love travelling in.

    As mentioned above its a shame the gaps between the days have been quite long, or so it’s seemed.

    Thanks for sharing.

    Full Member

    +1 to the thanks for this series. Only ever done 2 day trips, this series is inspiring, a great read, am refreshing the features section list at least 3 times per week waiting for the next update.

    Thanks Amanda and Rhys 🙂

    Full Member

    Yep, loving it,I live here or there and love seeing peoples adventures (and misadventures)as it gives me ideas.

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