Spain Bicycle Tour

October/November 2008

After Garry’s first long-distance cycle ride he found out that he had a real passion for long-distance cycling and cycle touring and decided to go on another. It was late autumn, and Garry was wondering where he could go that wasn’t too far away, and the weather would still be good! Still not having the confidence to take his bike on an aeroplane Garry decided to get the ferry to Spain and bicycle tour there.

His plan was to cycle down through Spain to Denier. Once in Denier, he would get a boat to Majorca. Cycle around the island, then catch another ferry back to Spain, not back to Denier, this time to Barcelona. Then after spending a few days in Barcelona Garry would head back to Bilbao for the ferry back to England. Well, that was the plan!

In spain

Garry arrived in Spain and started his Spain bicycle tour, but he wasn’t enjoying it at all! He was having to camp wild due to not being able to find any campsites! This tour wasn’t anything like his first where campsites were easy to find! Garry had done wild camping before but not every night! Garry was finding it hard going! Spending all day cycling on his own, then having to hide away at night tucked away behind some hedge trying to avoid people, it was all just a bit too lonely! Finally, though, Garry made it to Denier and a campsite!

ferries

After spending the night in Denier, Garry caught the ferry to Majorca, calling in at Ibiza first. After stopping off in Ibiza, the boat headed for Majorca. Unfortunately half an hour after leaving Ibiza the ferry broke down and had to return to port!

After limping back to Ibiza, the news wasn’t good! It was going to take 7 hours for a replacement ferry to arrive! But after waiting 12 hours, Garry gave up. He found another boat that would take him to directly to Barcelona, missing out Majorca!

After twelve hours on the ferry, Garry arrived in Barcelona. Unfortunately, it was at 11 o’clock at night! Not a good time to reach anywhere without having pre-booked accommodation! Garry left the ferry and went in search of a campsite that was located just outside of Barcelona. But every road Garry tried, ended up at a motorway! After an hour or so, Garry got fed up and headed out of the city on the motorway! Luckily Garry was only on the motorway for a mile or so before he found an exit! By now it was 2am, and Garry was feeling pretty tired but couldn’t see anywhere to stop, so he just cycled through the night!

The Storm

After a long night and day of cycling, Garry decided to stop early. Finding a spot to camp, tucked away in the corner of a field next to a clump of trees! Garry was pretty tired, and after cooking, supper settled down to an early night.

Garry’s sleep wasn’t to last very long before he was woken up by a storm raging outside! It was no ordinary storm Garry had never heard anything like it before! Lightning was flashing and cracking, the thunder was as loud as a Jumbo jet on takeoff, and the wind was pulling at the tent! Fearing the worst Garry got up and started to pack things away. But before he knew where he was, he was tumbling around in his tent! After rolling around the ground a couple of times, Garry managed to stop and pulled the tent tightly around himself! Garry gathered his bits together as best he could before crawling out of the tent, which as soon as it was free from Garry blew off into the trees!

Garry was a little shaken as he just didn’t know what had hit him! But once he had composed himself, he went and retrieved the tent from the trees! The tent was now unusable, a broken pole and gash in the tent! Garry still packed it away and loaded everything onto his bike! And with the storm still raging around him, Garry set off into the darkness of the night! The following evening when Garry was in a hotel, he learned that it was a mini-tornado that had hit him!

hotels all the way

Not being able to camp anymore Garry was forced to stay in hotels, it was the best thing that could have happened to him! It was now that Garry realised wild camping wasn’t for him or at least not every night! In future, if he couldn’t find a campsite, he would find a hotel or guesthouse. And only camp wild as a last resort!

Garry was now enjoying this tour and even went off on a detour into the Pyrenees mountains on route back to Bilbao.

Total miles cycled 1066.

Garry’s book which is available to buy from Amazon

Photos

Snow and mountains

Garry’s route

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