Bike And Car – “why can’t we be friends”

To quickly dispel any concerns raised about my previous post, I do not intend to wipe the slate clean and start the Bike V Car graph from scratch. Having made it through this Winter with minimal damage from the car I’m hoping for another year of cycling further than I drive. And with any luck, this year I will recover the deficit and level the scores in a proper manner.

This Sunday was a gloriously sunny Spring day. A perfect day for a cycle. I wanted to take the car out for a drive so I decided to combine the two and headed down to Exmoor National Park for some riding on the moors. This was also a good opportunity to take the fancy bike on its first outing of the year. I would certainly appreciate its lighter weight on the hills.

Bike and Car

Bike and Car. Mrs BikeVCar said that maybe this car should be more friendly rather than being versus the bikes!

Despite the sun being out it was still quite cold. However I was blessed with a strong tail wind on the ride up onto the moors. It was a 400+ metres single ascent and was certainly the longest climb I’ve ridden in a while. I opted to take the Porlock Toll Road with its gentler ascent, rather than the viciously steep main road. It was well worth the £1 premium:

Who says bikes have less rights on the road because they don't pay for it? Not

Who says bikes have less rights on the roads because they don’t pay for them? The Porlock Manor Estate astutely show no such prejudices against cyclists!

The views along the toll road were great

The views along the toll road were great …

On top of the moors

… however the wind was wild on top of the moors

Within the first 30 minutes I had climbed over 500 metres and when combined with the wall of wind I then faced on top of the moors, meant that I only covered about 12 miles in the first hour. However it felt good to be covering some tough miles on unfamiliar roads with a variety of changing scenery.

Sun-dappled, forest roads

Sun-dappled, forest roads

Winding roads stretching out into the long distance

Winding, undulating roads stretching out into the long distance

Bleak moorland

Bleak moorland

Obligatory bike photo

Obligatory bike photo

In total I rode for two hours, climbing over 1000 vertical metres. And the car performed well. Impressively it managed the whole trip at an unbelievable fuel economy of over 60 miles to the gallon. The same energy-efficiency could not be said for the cyclist who opted for more ‘honest’ fuel than the usual cyclist’s fodder of energy gels and flapjacks:

A quick banana and pork pie picnic was *burp* consumed mid-ride

A quick banana and pork pie picnic was *burp* consumed mid-ride

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