Just adding some thoughts in case there was any doubt: a SDW overnighter is ruddy brilliant.
Can’t get it out of my head. beautiful light pretty much the entire ride, bar possibly the last hour and a half when it was getting into yer common or garden hot, sunny day.
The wildlife was a real treat, never seen so much in a ride. Barn owls particularly, don’t usually see them on night rides near me. A couple of times I had bats almost fly into my helmet light then turn away. I have an image in my head of the second one: dark, reddy brown fur, grey wings with lighter grey highlights around the ribs/fingers in the skin of the wings.
Definitely the most comfortable time of day to be riding: cooler, less fluid loss, no need for sunscreen, and quiet – we had the trail to ourselves for hours and hours, apart from the above mentioned wildlife!
I’ve ridden the whole trail a handful of times, over two or three days and in one, and always planned to swim at the end, but it’s always been a rush to do other things: find out about trains or rush for the last one, get some food, or its evening time and starting to chill down a bit. Arriving at an empty beach and a cool sea at 8:30 in the morning with nothing to do for the rest of the day but eat breakfast and make our way home, was actual bliss.
Very glad I took so many photos, some just grabbed on the move on the phone from the pocket, some a bit more considered from the proper camera. There were some views from the dawn that I’d part forgotten!
Yes it was tiring, and a bit of a drain going overnight. I got home, had a pub lunch with mrs and littlest, showered then slept like the dead until the evening. I woke up a couple of times not knowing what time of day it was, or even what day it was! I reckon the SDW takes a weekend out of your time, whether you’re doing it 2 days or one, and I was right enough by the next day, so all in all, on a par with other approaches.
Summertime overnighter – an absolute treat!