Category Archives: N to G 2018

A scouting trip…

For our 25th wedding anniversary my wife and I took the Hurtigruten post ship from Bergen to Kirkenes Norway last week.  It was an amazing experience, and as it happened allowed me to do some scouting of the start point for my next long ride, Nordkapp. 

The ferry stops in the town of Honningsvåg which is about 35 km from Nordkapp.  We took the excursion bus which took the same roads I’ll be riding at the start of my trip.  It was super helpful to see what I’d be riding this next June!

The starting point…the globe at the North Cape.

The road I’ll be traveling at the start…

The current plan is to start the ride at 24:00 on the 21st of June.  To make this possible, I’ll be flying into Honningsvåg airport (after a 4 stop flight from London) and then get a taxi to the Cape. At 24:00 I’ll ride from the Cape to a camping cottage not far from the ferry terminal, get some sleep, then wake up the next day to take the ferry from Honningsvåg to Kjøllefjord.  There’s only one ferry eastbound each day, and it leaves at 14:45.  I’m taking this route to avoid traveling through the unlit and very steep tunnels that connect the island of Magerøya to the mainland.

The ferry arrives in Kjøllefjord at 17:00.  (My wife and I just traveled the same route so I now have a pretty good understanding of the ins and outs of Norwegian ferry travel.)  I’ll then ride roughly 100 km to my first stop on the mainland.

The new ‘ride’: an Azub Ti-Fly

Following on from my end to end ride in 2015, I’ve been planning to do another long ride.  The current plan is to ride from Nordkapp, Norway to Gibraltar two weeks at a time over the next three years.  It’s 6000 km overall, so 2000 km over two weeks seems an achievable goal.

One thing I learned from the end to end ride is that riding a fully loaded recumbent up a steep hill is not exactly fun.  I fell over several times, and was lucky that each time the only thing hurt was my pride.  Also, turning at ‘t’ junctions can be un-nerving.

So, for the next ride I’ve decided on a recumbent trike.  Three wheels, no balancing concerns.  The trike has two wheels in the front, and one in the back.  I went back to Azub, since their recumbent I used for the end to end was so good, and have purchased their new Ti-Fly trike.

The frame is sandblasted with a lacquer coating over the aluminium.  The trike has a couple of interesting features; it has a Pinion 18 speed gearing system at the crank set, Son dynamo hubs on both front wheels, one for the lighting, the other to power devices, and Azub’s very efficient front suspension which uses titanium plates as ‘springs’.

The trike folds after removing the seat, and once folded, is a very compact package.  I chose a 20″ rear wheel so that it would fold smaller for when I need to get it on a plane.

Like the recumbent, the trike includes Azub’s super adjustable seating system.  The seat and handlebars can be adjusted to suit a wide range of riding positions.  All of the adjustments are locked with red anodised quick release locks.  The rear wheel is suspended using a Fox air shock absorber.

The trike has racks that can carry four panniers and a rack top bag, like the Azub 6. 

I’ve taken a few rides and it’s a real blast to ride.  Cars and lorries give you plenty of space as they pass and try to figure out what you are riding…  The trike handles well, even at speed.  It’s a bit heavy, but so am I.  I’m adding a device charging system with a cache battery, and am working on how best to mount my smart phone/gps, and my Garmin bike computer.