Day 8: Fri 4th July 2009
Ride: Etreaupont to Bewdley - 347 miles
Just like two years ago, today we had a short 130 mile dash to Calais - mainly autoroute - a ferry crossing to Dover, and then a final 200 miles or so of motorway to cover before we'd be back home in Bewdley. Where it differed to last time was that we were due to arrive in Dover at rush hour on a Friday.
Right from the off this morning it was every man for himself and a race to get an earlier crossing. We virtually all started together but one by one riders - and driver - fell back either getting caught at traffic lights, having to stop for fuel, or getting lost in the most ridiculous diversion around Cambrai. In the end Phil was victorious and the only one that managed to catch the early ferry.
The high speed run to Calais was in vain for everyone except Phil - at least the weather had improved
Pete and Chris B catch 40 winks (L) while Kyle and Cat wonder how they manage it with all the noise (R)
The M25 was like a car park and we were happier to be on bikes today than we were yesterday however note to ourselves - don't come home on a Friday afternoon next time.
Once again we had a fantastic trip and everyone had a great time and on this tour, for those that did all the rides, we managed to clock up 1,750 miles.
On a final note, once again many thanks from everyone to Phil for his route planning, and motorail and hotel bookings.
Next year we're thinking of heading to the Italian Alps - possibly having the bikes transported there and flying out to pick them up - and touring the Dolomites...