For this little nugget of a ride, we dipped into Bristol’s pretty greenbelt fringes, making our way to the petite and idyllic Bourton Coombe. On a carpet of wild garlic – and possibly amongst a family of fairies – we enjoyed a summer’s night under tarp, before rolling back to the city along the traffic-free Festival Way (Sustrans route 33), lingering at playgrounds as we went.
If you would like to keep up with where I am between tardy blog entries, I keep my While Out Riding Facebook page more regularly updated – along with posting extra photos and gear ponderings. Occasionally, I also post pictures on my Instagram feed. And if you haven’t overdosed by then, I’ve also started a While Out Riding Tumblr edition, focusing on images – many of which don’t make it onto the blog.
Running both a trailer and a seat means we can chat to Sage while we ride, and he can engage with his surroundings. Or we can nestle him inside when the terrain is bumpier, the weather mixed, or it’s time for a nap.
Heading out of Bristol, via the city’s bike paths.
When you’re touring with a toddler, time off the bike is just as important as time on it. Unlike his old man, Sage has taken to the Beautiful Game. So a football is as valued a piece of gear as anything else we carry.
Sage in flight, having swooped down for a Sesame Snap.
Meandering through Ashton Court…
… while Sage naps.
After a short stint on singletrack, we head onwards through Plantation woods.
Stopping at Gatcombe farm shop to buy dinner, and say hi to the emus and geese.
Then it’s into the coombe we go – the small and often steep-side valleys typical of southwestern England.
Sage scopes out our campspot – which comes complete with wigwam – and declares it to be perfect.
Feel free to camp here. But please leave as found.
Connecting the pole of the Black Diamond Mega Light…
… is his favourite part of the tent building ceremony.
Then he’s off to play with sticks, the age old toddler activity.
Ever the little helper, dinner making duties call – a soupy serving of sausages, kale, carrots and millet.
Not only is it delicious, but it passes Nancy’s stringent standards of wholefood goodness.
Sage’s bedtime story – in which Miffy goes touring on her bicycle – is theme appropriate too.
Cosy! The Mega Light is both spacious and earthy. Seen here are some of Sage’s favourite night time accessories, listed below.
Sage’s Sleep Gear:
Thermarest ProLite 3 Short
Milk and Honey Co down sleep sack
Patagonia Down Jacket
Patagonia capilene long underwear
18oz Klean Kanteen
Mono the Monkey
(in cooler temperatures, this is supplemented by merino wool mittens and hat)
Idyllic indeed. Surely fairies live here.
Come morning, back to Bristol we head.
Lingering, of course, in parks along the way…
Short but sweet…