M4 Corridor Bikepacking (England)

Questions and answers about routes.

Moderators: Bearbonesnorm, Taylor, Chew

User avatar
Richard G
Posts: 4111
Joined: Sat Apr 04, 2015 9:09 am
Location: South Wales

M4 Corridor Bikepacking (England)

Post by Richard G » Wed May 24, 2017 6:46 pm

Last week's #jennride was supposed to be my friends first experience of bikepacking, but alas his fitness and mountain biking skills were not quite up to the task and he pulled out of the ride sometime in the early evening. I've got the distinct impression that he feels pretty embarrassed about it so I'm hoping to put together something a lot more chilled (especially terrain wise) in the summer or autumn somewhere a lot closer to home for both of us.

With that in mind, does anyone know anywhere that might be good around the M4 corridor? I'm guessing something in the North Wessex Downs or the Chiltern Hills? Don't really fancy the Surrey Hills as in my experience it tends to be utterly heaving there.

Cheers.

Matt
Posts: 1628
Joined: Thu Jun 23, 2011 10:31 am

Re: M4 Corridor Bikepacking (England)

Post by Matt » Wed May 24, 2017 10:45 pm

I could sort something :-bd

User avatar
Richard G
Posts: 4111
Joined: Sat Apr 04, 2015 9:09 am
Location: South Wales

Re: M4 Corridor Bikepacking (England)

Post by Richard G » Thu May 25, 2017 10:19 am

Main problem would probably be timing. Calendar is pretty full with events at the moment so I'll have to work out where it actually fits. Stupid enjoyable life. :lol:

User avatar
Bearbonesnorm
Posts: 20270
Joined: Sun Jun 05, 2011 8:53 pm
Location: my own little world

Re: M4 Corridor Bikepacking (England)

Post by Bearbonesnorm » Thu May 25, 2017 10:30 am

How about doing something around the Gower? It's lovely, feels fairly isolated but shouldn't kill anyone.

Inspiration from Mr Pease: http://www.anthonypeasephotography.co.u ... king-trip/
What value a life half lived if the half you lived was the wrong half?

User avatar
Zippy
Posts: 2974
Joined: Mon Oct 15, 2012 6:43 pm
Location: Suffolk
Contact:

Re: M4 Corridor Bikepacking (England)

Post by Zippy » Thu May 25, 2017 10:55 am

The m4 is most useful as a means of getting to south wales :wink:

User avatar
Richard G
Posts: 4111
Joined: Sat Apr 04, 2015 9:09 am
Location: South Wales

Re: M4 Corridor Bikepacking (England)

Post by Richard G » Thu May 25, 2017 12:06 pm

I know the Gower well, but it's too far over for him... hence the England part of the title. :P

He's North London based and I just want to remove as many barriers to him coming out again as humanly possible.

benp1
Posts: 3561
Joined: Sat Dec 07, 2013 7:36 pm
Location: South Downs

Re: M4 Corridor Bikepacking (England)

Post by benp1 » Thu May 25, 2017 12:09 pm

He clearly lives in the best place in the world!

Chilterns are very easy to access, good for a bivy. Not flat but plenty of options to make it a bit easier

User avatar
Bearbonesnorm
Posts: 20270
Joined: Sun Jun 05, 2011 8:53 pm
Location: my own little world

Re: M4 Corridor Bikepacking (England)

Post by Bearbonesnorm » Thu May 25, 2017 12:40 pm

He's North London based and I just want to remove as many barriers to him coming out again as humanly possible.
Sorry Richard, I'd just assumed he lived somewhere nice :wink:
What value a life half lived if the half you lived was the wrong half?

benp1
Posts: 3561
Joined: Sat Dec 07, 2013 7:36 pm
Location: South Downs

Re: M4 Corridor Bikepacking (England)

Post by benp1 » Thu May 25, 2017 12:50 pm

It's drier here than Wales!!

We might have a summer or autumn SE bivy in the chilterns, might work for that?

This was our winter one

https://www.strava.com/activities/80005 ... 1481495738

https://www.strava.com/activities/80005 ... 1481562779

User avatar
Richard G
Posts: 4111
Joined: Sat Apr 04, 2015 9:09 am
Location: South Wales

Re: M4 Corridor Bikepacking (England)

Post by Richard G » Thu May 25, 2017 12:55 pm

:lol:

I should be clear, he's not unfit by any means, but that lakeland ride was a tough one, especially in terms of terrain. He's a roadie normally so I'd wager it wrecked him both physically and mentally.

Edit - Ben, does that route have an appropriate amount of pub stops built into it? :grin:

User avatar
Bearbonesnorm
Posts: 20270
Joined: Sun Jun 05, 2011 8:53 pm
Location: my own little world

Re: M4 Corridor Bikepacking (England)

Post by Bearbonesnorm » Thu May 25, 2017 1:48 pm

It's drier here than Wales!!
Every cloud ...
What value a life half lived if the half you lived was the wrong half?

benp1
Posts: 3561
Joined: Sat Dec 07, 2013 7:36 pm
Location: South Downs

Re: M4 Corridor Bikepacking (England)

Post by benp1 » Thu May 25, 2017 11:24 pm

Bearbonesnorm wrote:
It's drier here than Wales!!
Every cloud ...
Has rain!

I do seem to keep going back to Wales though...

benp1
Posts: 3561
Joined: Sat Dec 07, 2013 7:36 pm
Location: South Downs

Re: M4 Corridor Bikepacking (England)

Post by benp1 » Thu May 25, 2017 11:25 pm

Richard G wrote::lol:

I should be clear, he's not unfit by any means, but that lakeland ride was a tough one, especially in terms of terrain. He's a roadie normally so I'd wager it wrecked him both physically and mentally.

Edit - Ben, does that route have an appropriate amount of pub stops built into it? :grin:
Yes, lots! And some nice cafes!

User avatar
Richard G
Posts: 4111
Joined: Sat Apr 04, 2015 9:09 am
Location: South Wales

Re: M4 Corridor Bikepacking (England)

Post by Richard G » Fri May 26, 2017 12:52 am

:-bd

benp1
Posts: 3561
Joined: Sat Dec 07, 2013 7:36 pm
Location: South Downs

Re: M4 Corridor Bikepacking (England)

Post by benp1 » Fri May 26, 2017 6:36 am

We stayed in some private woods that trip but there are plenty of options round there if there's only a couple of you

User avatar
Richard G
Posts: 4111
Joined: Sat Apr 04, 2015 9:09 am
Location: South Wales

Re: M4 Corridor Bikepacking (England)

Post by Richard G » Fri May 26, 2017 1:24 pm

Concern is mostly half decent routes rather than too much on places to stay. There's always a little clearing or field somewhere and as long as you rock up after dark and leave at first light you're usually golden.

User avatar
ctznsmith
Posts: 1020
Joined: Tue Feb 04, 2014 6:09 pm
Contact:

Re: M4 Corridor Bikepacking (England)

Post by ctznsmith » Mon May 29, 2017 9:21 pm

Something involving The Ridgeway?

mat_swan
Posts: 233
Joined: Sun Nov 02, 2014 8:46 pm
Location: South East

Re: M4 Corridor Bikepacking (England)

Post by mat_swan » Mon May 29, 2017 9:53 pm

If you did want to come in thw general direction of the surrey hills but not into audi and enduro bike central I'd be hapoy to advise on a route- lots of trails that the majority of people on leith, holmbury and pitch will never ride.

For example if you wanted a point to point you could do a pretty decent route from Guildford tk sevenoaks along the north downs.

User avatar
Richard G
Posts: 4111
Joined: Sat Apr 04, 2015 9:09 am
Location: South Wales

Re: M4 Corridor Bikepacking (England)

Post by Richard G » Tue May 30, 2017 9:43 am

I think realistically it would have to be a circular route as getting back to the start would be a bit of a pain otherwise. Trying to remove any excuses for them to say no. :)

mat_swan
Posts: 233
Joined: Sun Nov 02, 2014 8:46 pm
Location: South East

Re: M4 Corridor Bikepacking (England)

Post by mat_swan » Tue May 30, 2017 3:53 pm

Do you have a rough idea of the sort of mileage/hilliness/amount of 'proper' singletrack you'd want to cover?

You'd be in the sort of area where you can drop in and out of towns easily so this may influence you one way or another if you want remoteness vs reassurance of a pub/shop. That said, I did 60 odd miles last Friday only really went as near houses as I wanted- there are plenty of places where you can look out for miles and see mostly trees.

User avatar
Richard G
Posts: 4111
Joined: Sat Apr 04, 2015 9:09 am
Location: South Wales

Re: M4 Corridor Bikepacking (England)

Post by Richard G » Tue May 30, 2017 8:35 pm

I'd argue probably best to be no longer than 80 miles over both days, and realistically no more than 8,000 feet of climbing. I find that's a pretty good ratio as a general rule.

I imagine I'd want to avoid anything too rocky as it freaked him out a bit last time (I'd wager heavily rooted would have the same effect).

Not a real worry about masses of proper singletrack, as long as it isn't all deathmarch instead. :lol:

mat_swan
Posts: 233
Joined: Sun Nov 02, 2014 8:46 pm
Location: South East

Re: M4 Corridor Bikepacking (England)

Post by mat_swan » Tue May 30, 2017 10:47 pm

Ok, I'll have a think and see if I can come up with something interesting to give you an option

User avatar
Richard G
Posts: 4111
Joined: Sat Apr 04, 2015 9:09 am
Location: South Wales

Re: M4 Corridor Bikepacking (England)

Post by Richard G » Tue May 30, 2017 11:21 pm

Cheers.

Matt
Posts: 1628
Joined: Thu Jun 23, 2011 10:31 am

Re: M4 Corridor Bikepacking (England)

Post by Matt » Wed May 31, 2017 9:16 am

Tell us the start point and I'm sure we can work out some routes

User avatar
Richard G
Posts: 4111
Joined: Sat Apr 04, 2015 9:09 am
Location: South Wales

Re: M4 Corridor Bikepacking (England)

Post by Richard G » Wed May 31, 2017 11:38 am

Well, anywhere in that zone really. I guess somewhere in a rough circle between Swindon, Luton and Basingstoke. :smile:

Post Reply