Shortly after completing this post it struck me that covering Kent in explorer tiles did not fit with my day-to-day life. As inspired it seemed the practicalities of the mission quickly became clear. To complete it would mean having to make dedicated trips to fill in missing tiles for no reason other than doing so. Not feeling especially enthused by that idea I began to iterate.
There was a better way. My work takes me all over the place. Mostly around the home counties and London but from time to time further afield. A typical jobs takes a couple of hours to complete. Why not take my bike with me and after finishing a job go for my daily ride before driving back home again? This way I get to ride in different places much more often and do so without making any journeys I would not have done anyway. Why I had not been doing this for the last couple of years escapes me!
So last week I had two days in London, and jobs in Canterbury, Hythe and Rainham in Essex. On each day I took my bike and on all except Friday when I was in Essex took the opportunity to ride where work took me. It did not all go according to plan. The Garmin struggles when plotted tracks cross over one another. We both got confused a few times. One ride was cut short by ten miles because I allowed it to recalculate the route. There was another where I completed one section in the wrong order to others and one more where it froze up and just tracked a straight line instead of the route I actually followed. Lessons on my part were learned. Switch off the option to recalculate routes and take care to crossing tracks when planning routes.
This led to the best ride of the week on Thursday when I was working in Hythe. It all went according to plan. I started about an hour before sunset. The sky was clear. Not too cold. A stop off half way at my sister’s house in Deal for tea and sandwiches before the return leg back to my car in Hythe and the drive back to Chatham. The route to Deal was great. Highlights included cycling along the top of the cliffs from Folkstone and down a long gravel track into Dover and then from the other side of Dover down into Walmer which is just outside of Deal. It was a great. really enjoyed it.
Bonus points gained for filling in a few missing tiles on my Kent coverage. It seems that this method may also be a good way of expanding the largest size square I’ve covered. All in things are looking good for the year ahead. Scotland on Monday and Tuesday to do the North Sea Cycle route / NCR1 from Dundee to Inverness…