We set a date well in advance, postponed just once, and eventually booked train tickets. We we're committed. And after a few months of cross referencing maps and researching kit we hooked up at Carlisle last Saturday AM, to catch our connection to the start of the C2C. If all went to plan we'd be in Sunderland roughly 48 hours later, having spent 2 nights wild camping in roughly predetermined spots and having put 230km and approx. 3600m of climbing behind us. Needless to say the whole thing was an absolute rippp. The trails were incredible despite the heavy loads on the bikes, and the worst we encountered was a bit of drizzle and a single flat tyre. I shot a single roll of film on a Kodak FUNFLASH (would not recommend), and I'll let the edit above tell the rest of the story. Far from quenching my thirst for this kind of riding, the trip has only served to whet my appetite.
Afterword: What I noticed more about arriving back at the coast was not the distance travelled, or the idea of having ridden between one furthest point and another, but the elevation gained and lost over the journey, being back at the geographical zero-point of sea level.
Beginning with a hellish ride to Brighton with the boys back in March, this roll of film flicks sporadically through daytrips, bro rides and chill rolls. Shot blind on an Ilford XP2 single use black & white which lost it's viewfinder lens after the first exposure when the camera leapt out of my jersey pocket at speed onto the tarmac.
Despite it's tank-like good looks and almost-OD colourway, my do-most-things road/gravel/commuter/tourer bike is Swiss Army only in the sense that, like its iconic multi-too namesake, it can turn its hand to pretty much anything. Completely stock in these pics, I've just upgraded to some 105 bits after 9 months and over 4000km, as a little thank you for it being so lovely and reliable. Kinda heavy though, sorta feels like a tank sometimes too.