I wasn’t expecting to be dragging my bike through snow, but that’s like life. I have enough resources to manage. I’ll sure appreciate to be in a cosy house after the trip!
Parts of yesterday really had me questioning what I’m doing. Cycling on the side of a noisy road in the rain. Feeling cold. Wet feet, wet hands, tired, but can’t stop for a nap. Phew.
The magic usually comes though, after turning off the big roads, onto little lanes, a peace descends. The riding has warmed me up. Now looking for a camp spot.
I got up onto the ridgeway, and it’s totally snow covered! Beautiful, but also not quite what I was expecting on this trip. Was hoping for a bit more sunny spring days…
I like to try to adapt to new realities as they arrive, and the new reality here is about keeping warm and dry. Then getting some food in me. Then sleeping. The basics.
I found a little spot without snow on it (as it was under a tree), which would have a supply of wood nearby. Perfect.
I usually try to camp a bit away from the path, but in this case I’m camped on the side of the path. Somehow I imagine the conditions make this seem OK. I feel like a traveller from another era, lugging my belongings, finding spaces to camp along the way.
I’m on a byway, and I can imagine it as an ancient way. A far cry from the busy modern road from yesterday. Those are kind of OK if you’re in the car, maybe with some nice music on. Warm and dry. But outside the car, in the cold and wet is another story. Roaring beasts. The byway, by contrast, exists at a human scale. You could stop to interact with each passerby if you wished.
I was thinking who needs to go to a far away place to get their snowy expedition adventure when you can get this experience not far from Didcot (of course, it’s not usually like this, and as the snow melts I reveals an ordinary agriculture rolling hills scene).
I do appreciate the change of vibe, especially as I had come from staying in Oxford with a friend. Suddenly now survival mode. I appreciated that I travel prepared enough for this kind of thing. A saw, a splitting knife, a tarp, ropes, the knowledge on how to use all these things…
On with a video and some photos!