Cycling is the best way to get to know a country and the idea of riding from the tip of west Cornwall to the tip of eastern Scotland is daunting, but a real challenge. It's this country's classic bike ride and as people usually do it for charity I decided the BBC Radio Cornwall Appeal was the obvious choice. I'm an experienced bike rider. I used to race but for the past 10 years have been doing long solo touring rides in Europe and the Middle East. I've cycled the length of France and Spain many times and also 3 thousand miles across Iran and Pakistan. I've hired a single speed in India and mountain biked in Iceland.
Part of the reason I want to do this ride is because I know those countries better than my own and this will remedy that. I ride unsupported. That means in my two rear panniers I carry a tent, sleeping bag, clothes, a few tools, some medicine and maps. And that's it. The night before the off is always spent paring down the weight. I'll sleep in fields and wash using my drink bottle as a makeshift shower. The first night alone is always odd, you feel exhausted and on the edge of society. After a few days that changes to feeling exhilarated, free and alive. I will however aim for the odd night under a roof, especially if the day's ride is rain sodden. If you feel you can help give some money to the Appeal I'd be really grateful. I'll do the painful bit, you just give a little, just what you can afford. Thank you. Euan.