Cycling is a great pastime and an excellent way to keep fit. It also enables you to see parts of the countryside that you might not otherwise be able to reach.

One of the downsides is that it takes time. This was a problem for me when I was working. I got home from work and was not motivated to get my gear on and cycle. This was a particular problem in the Winter when it was dark and often wet and windy.

Since I retired, this has not been an issue. It is good to be able to cycle when everyone else is working. Best to avoid the school run though.

Cycling is not expensive. You can buy a perfectly respectable bike for under £500. Links are available elsewhere on this page.

There are three main types of bike - road bike, mountain bike and hybrid. These are my personal thoughts on each


My first serious bike was a Specialized mountain bike and it was a lot of fun. It was robust and enabled me to cycle off road over some pretty rough terrain. However, it was hard work at times. Fitting slick tyres made things easier and increased my times by about 10% More info


After about a year I bought a Villiers road bike. It took about a week to get used to the different style of riding but I now prefer it to any other type of bike. It is as if I am part of the bike. More info


I experimented with a Specialized hybrid bike but have never got on with it very well. The truth is that it is quite old and modern hybrid bikes offer many of the advantages of a road bike and can still deal with rough ground. More info

Cycling in France

D'Huez image

France is a great Country for cycling. In fact, many European countries are far more cycle friendly than UK. I regularly visit two regions of France

La Charente

The nearest major Town is Limoges which has an airport taking flights from Gatwick. It is not very hilly but there are several well established cycle routes (boucles) which vary in length and difficulty. I usuall stay at Camp Laurent and heartily recommend it. The English owners are very friendly and they have a "no children" policy.More info

Le Bourg D'Oisans

There is an excellent camp site called A La Rencontre du Soleil. It is right at the foot of the famous Alpe D'Huez cycle climb with its 21 virages. Every keen cyclist should go there once at least. The climb is challenging but there is a wealth of cycle-related activity at the top, including shops that will carry out repairs or let you try out a high specification carbon bike for the day. More info Back to top