Written by JO BURT.
It’s always nice when the thing that you’ve done forever because it feels like the right thing to do becomes the right thing to do. Nice, and quietly reassuring. Reducing travel, especially air miles, because of its impact on the planet is rightly a big thing right now and while we’re aware that a lot of our trips require us to fly RPM90 has always preferred to keep things local, we’re experts at riding around our back yard, it’s just what we do, what we’ve always done. Born from getting excited about riding bikes years before we could even drive a car to get about we had to make sure our adventures started right from our front door and after a lifetime of this there’s not a road or trail within a 50-mile radius of the gate that we don’t know and can’t conjure up an exciting route from.
If we’ve had to journey away to a ride or race we’ve always tried to pack the car full of people, bikes and stuff, again it’s something we’ve done since forever as a necessity of scamming lifts off mates that had cars, it’s a large part of our cycling history and it continues to be so now even without the ecological pat on the head of car-pooling. Why wouldn’t you? Share the petrol, driving, snacks and emissions, have someone shotgun to poke you awake and sing along to the radio with. We’re also great fans of hopping on the train (engineering works excepted), it can be a great way of exploring new areas cheaply (we all have railcards) and with a low environmental impact, be that a quick 25 miles away or healthy 250kms. The initial hour of riding from home can get a little tedious every so often so heading out to somewhere that’s just over that way a bit can make a huge difference to morale and extend your local ride repertoire. And we’ve been known to plan a lengthy journey one way and then ride home, maybe taking advantage of a prevailing wind. Riding from A to B where the latter is home makes a great physical and mental change to just plodding the same old loops, there’s different roads to ride and hills to climb with familiar roads kicking in for the final bit to help you to the finish. Don’t buy a return ticket as a safety net to hop into to get you back home if you get a bit weary, that’s cheating, commit to the ride.
We know that a lot of our business takes us abroad which doesn’t do wonders for our carbon footprint or the world in general and we appreciate that it’s not a points-based system but the rest of the time we do our best to keep our impact minimal. Current events have also seriously escalated the consequences that world travel has on the entire planet and its population and made us reconsider even more how much we trot around the globe, and how much more we might wash our hands.
With this increasingly in mind, we compiled our years of local knowledge to create the South Coast Overland* and Sussex Weekender trips, both of which tap into the keeping it close to home ethos if you’re feeling conscious about your travel for fun miles, and they prove that you don’t have to go halfway around the world to have an adventure.
The South Coast Overland * is a three-day bikepacking trip that starts in Lewes and heads west along a mixed terrain route of the secret lanes and ancient ways of Sussex dipping into civilization merely for food resupply. We overnight in the only bothy on the South Downs before ferrying across the Solent to traverse the Isle of Wight the next day and crossing the water again to visit The Woods Cyclery who will guide us around a baggage free canter of the New Forest for the final day.
The Sussex Weekender has each of its feet planted in a different half of the county and sneaks and weaves it way around the hidden off-road tracks that are hard found by decades of the various RPM90 team members getting lost and slashed with brambles and is furtive enough to have even local riders confused as to where they are. Despite being in one of the most densely populated parts of the UK you’ll see no one all day as we scruffle around the green lanes, head off the beaten track and then turn off that. The overnight campsite is 15 minutes away from the noise and mayhem of a big city weekend if you want, but as it’s quietly hidden in a knot of trees snuck in the lee of the South Downs you’ll feel a thousand miles away from anywhere.
RPM90 create BESPOKE Sussex rides for a 1-2-1 ride or for small groups of friends, club riders or corporate groups looking for a great single or multi-day charity fundraiser or teambuilding ride.
You don’t need to go very far to have a proper adventure, you just need to know where to look.
- Its been a very soggy winter and we therefor have a revised date TBC. contact us to save a place