Thanks so much for expanding on the details of your trip; I hung on every word.
...van back up. During the day I just carried some spare clothes for weather changes and for tea stops and minor tools and tubes.
Sounds like the Mercury was simply ideal for this sort of ride, and yes, the van backup is a really viable way to go for such things.
minor roads does mean stiffer hills esp. in Cornwall and Peak District and Yorks Dales.
Yayah! I've never been but have seen some of those grades in photos and read of them in accounts. Look indeed to be 25% in places. Like this: /
...65 miles per day...not really the easy option...1050 miles with approx 36000 feet of climbing
Well, I think you did wonderfully well, Graham. Those sorts of climbs make shorter linear distances effectively much, *much* longer and are really grueling. Glad the van backup was an option, and the bike was relatively light, load-wise.
The direct route is a lot shorter.
<nods> Yes, that would be the route I have read about more often. Still, there is something extra-special about the back-byways, and getting to see the roads less traveled. I'm so glad you were able to do the trip; well done!
My Mercury has the Giles Bouthard gear changer on the handlebar.
...And it sounds as if it worked flawlessly, or at least got a thorough workout with those sorts of climbs and uppy-downy roads.
Looking forward to hearing more whenever you're up to posting.