#5000colo Day 7: Coastal Capers

Distance travelled: 28.88 miles
Cumulative distance: 183.42 miles
Distance remaining: 4816.58 miles
Percentage complete: 3.67
Villages visited: Filby, Thrigby, Mautby, Runham, Stokesby, Billockby, Clippesby, Thurne, Ashby with Oby, Fleggburgh, Rollesby, Ormesby St Michael, Ormesby St Margaret, Scratby, California, West Caister, Caister on Sea.

A real up-and-down sort of a ride, despite the lack of undulation in the terrain. It started really nicely, rolling through Thrigby, Mautby and Runham against a pale pearlescent silver sky; I stopped and photographed the village sign, which was surrounded by bright pink flowers.

As I rolled towards Stokesby, I noticed that a few fields over, running parallel to me, was the set-square-straight tarmac artery of the Acle Straight, carrying the traffic to and fro between Acle and Great Yarmouth.

It had all started beautifully; however, in a microcosm of life, a few obstacles were about to present themselves. Firstly, a couple of near misses on the A1064; impatient drivers squeezing past me with inches to spare, one of whom shouted something unintelligible out of his window at me.

I’ve had very few problems with drivers in the 800+ miles I’ve cycled in the past few weeks, and they’ve pretty much all been on A-roads. I try to keep off them as much as possible, but sometimes it’s pretty much unavoidable… and the road surfaces do tend to be a lot better than some of the back roads!

The next problem was definitely ‘user error’; I misread the map and turned off the B1152 too early. By the time I realised I was too far down the road to make turning back a worthwhile option, so, after a stop for water, mapreading and a stretch, I decided to do the loop around Thurne in reverse.

However, a couple of miles further on, as I headed towards Repps, I realised that I’d forgotten to restart my activity on Strava. This annoyed me a lot more than it should have, but I eventually talked myself round using the logic that despite what the app says, I have still cycled the miles I’ve cycled, been to the villages I’ve been to, and done the exercise I’ve done. I’ve recalculated the route and added the missing miles, so no harm done.

Onwards to Fleggburgh, then Rollesby, and another busy stretch along the A149. The area around Rollesby Broad was really picturesque, but due to the volume of traffic I wasn’t really able to drink it in as I’d have liked to.

A couple of Ormesbys later (St Michael and St Margaret), and the ‘saddle sore’ was back with a vengeance; the worst I’ve experienced so far. Thankfully I had brought a tiny pot of chamois cream with me for the first time, which I’d decanted from my big tub just this morning. Boy, did I need it.

The magic potion worked its charm, and I was back in the saddle with renewed vigour for the final stretch. Up to Scratby, then down the curiously named Rottenstone Lane to the even more curiously named caravan estate of California.

Then it was yet more hairy A-road riding, along the Caister bypass. A quick loop round through West Caister, rolling downhill past the scenic Caister Castle, then into Caister itself and a finish line right on the beach.

A challenging ride today, no doubt about it. Katie came to meet me at the finish, and we treated ourselves to a G&T, fish and chips and a fiver’s worth of 2p coins for the inevitable and childlike joy of the coin pushers.

My plan is to power through tomorrow’s ride, and then possibly have a break on Saturday to let the sore bits recover…

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