All coming together
Here are some pictures of the build up to the challenge. What they don't capture is all the work behind the scenes.
The preparation for this challenge began several months ago and as with all good things, it all comes together in the end with a little faith, a lot of work and help from my hero helpers.
Some favourite pics
Not a day goes by that I don't think about and miss Emma. She was incredibly special and very loved by everyone who knew her. She was beautiful, bright and incredibly brave. If you weren't lucky enough to have met her, I want to share some of my favourite photos of her.
Croatia & Slovenia
Here are some photos of the journey through Croatia and along the Dalmatian Coast so far.
It took a little longer than anticipated as we tried to cut through the mountains.
We've seen terrific thunderstorms, torrential rain, glorious sunshine and scorching heat.
All is well and we send our love back home x
Trieste, Venice, Verona, Bergamo, Milan and Turin all done. Camped at Laka Garda and Lake Lecco where we sheltered from a terrific thunderstorm and a tree narrowly missed our tent! Reached base camp at the end of September.
The Montgenrve Alpine pass that took me from Italy to France on Thursday. Montgenevre is at 1841 meters, and the first Town in France. I had coffee and cake and Lotte tried a piece of every cake in the cafe, The owner fell in love with her as well as a local, Totally spoilt.
A ten mile down hill ride then took us to Briancon at 1338 meters high! Only to climb to the highest point 2058 meters for the Col du Lautaret pass on Friday at midday! 10 miles up but 40 down. I managed to cycle 50 miles in total!
We are now camped at Livet. It's downhill all the way back to the UK!
From Montgenevre, Briancon, Col du Lautaret and Livet in the Alps, we cycled to Lyon, Macon and then via Paray le Monial to Bourbon-Lancy. I am thankful the steeps hills are behind us and we have followed the River Loire for some time through Never, Sancerre, Gien, Chartres (where we stopped by the vets to get Lotte's pre-crossing check up and treatment sorted. We stopped at Maillebois, then Grande Cour before reaching Caen this afternoon. We decided to visit the beaches in Normandy and planted some daisy seeds at Pegasus Bridge. On the overnight ferry to Portsmouth and looking forward to seeing family, friends and supporters on the finish line.
We arrived back in Portsmouth courtesy of the overnight ferry from Caen sponsored by the kind folk at Brittany Ferries and I was joined by friends Si Brice, Lucy and Dermot Downey. We cycled to Wickham to pick up Marion, my Cruse counsellor and then it was on to Loomies where we stopped briefly and caught up with more friends.
We continued up the A32 and just before we reached Chawton were joined by members of Alton Cycling Club who formed a group around me and serenaded me with Daisy Daisy which bought a tear to my eye. Once off the busy A32, we stopped in Chawton where we put Lotte's basket back on the tandem so that she could be on the back as we came back into Alton. The police stopped the traffic for us and there were over 100 people cheering and waving flags, balloons and welcome home banners as we crossed the finish line. What a fantastic welcome. Thanks to all involved.