A great many friends and families of Ayr Roads CC have benefited from the services of the Ayrshire Hospice, which is why we are announcing our support for Grant Young as he raises money by cycling the length of the Rhine and Danube Rivers as he pedals from Scotland to Romania.
Grant tells us more:
I will leave to begin my journey on August 27th sailing from Newcastle to Ijmuiden in the Netherlands, so the very first leg of my trip will be from my daughter’s flat beside the “squinty bridge” to the ferry terminal, making the whole thing I suppose “Tyne, Rhine, Danube” which has a ring about it.The bit of the whole trip I am most concerned about at present is the very first part, ie finding the bike trail in Rotterdam, and getting out of the urban area, as the river seems to split and change its name several times.I reckon to clear Holland in a couple of days or so at roughly 80 miles a day, my target pace. We have german friends in Emmerich on the Rhine just into Germany and I hope to stay there overnight. Then it is on down the Rhine through Germany, towards the Rhinefalls at Shaffhausen in the Black Forest. Thats the first 800 plus miles accounted for…Donnaueschingen is about 35 kms from Shaffhausen and that is where I head to the source of the River Danube next. From here there is, I understand a fairly well marked bike trail of different surfaces, all the way through Austria, Slovakia, Hungary, Croatia, Serbia, Bulgaria, Moldova and Romania to the Danube Delta on the Black Sea. I hope my tyre choice of Schwalbe Marathon Plus 28 s can cope with all the variations of surface.I am looking forward to seeing Vienna, Budapest, Bratislava and Belgrade, and many other cultural and historical centres on the way.
I plan only to take two 28 .litre panniers on the back and a bike bag on the front. I have no back up team, so I need to travel light. With the tourist season beginning to drop away, I hope to be pretty much able to stop wherever I want and find B&B or similar. It worked well when I cycled Barcelona to Paris a year or two back.Overall, and all going well I hope to take about 40 days with 35 of these cycling days and 5 rest days built in.Once I complete the trip at the Danube Delta, I need to extract myself from Romania, and all going well I have a further day’s cycle to Constanta on the Black Sea, where I will have booked a Turkish Airlines flight to Istanbul then Manchester. Getting the timing of this right will be interesting!Following the trip, I plan to put an illustrated presentation together and offer it to a wide variety of clubs and organisations who need speakers during the winter. I will come and perform, sharing my experiences in return for donations to the Hospice, which should keep things going.