While I have been writing the posts, I have been looking at all the figures. The distance we cycled, how much we climbed, the number of countries visited, how many punctures we had. I thought it would be fun to share our bicycle tour in numbers with you.
1. Distance cycled: 5,518 kilometres = 3,428 miles
The shortest route from Nuorgam to Torrevieja according to Google Maps is 5,068 kilometres. We didn’t take the shortest route since it goes via Sweden and we wanted to cycle more through Finland.
But that wasn’t the only thing that added extra kilometres. So did the wrong turns, like the one in Finland when we missed a small left turn on the map. But it turned out to be a blessing as we found a warm place to sleep, met two wonderful people and got a completely new sauna experience.
2. Countries Visited: 6
Our ride started in Finland and finished in Spain. On route we cycled through Sweden, Denmark, Germany and France. The plan had been to start in Norway, which would have added an extra country to the total, but COVID changed that plan.
We could have added a few more countries to the list had it not been for the Brexit related timeframe we were on. For example, we could have cycled through Andorra or nipped into Switzerland and even the top of Italy, but we had to save them for another bicycle tour.
3. Days spend on the road: 72
It still often feels unreal that we actually spent ten weeks and two days travelling on bicycles. We both could have happily spent even longer, had it not been for the 90 days deadline and our dwindling budget.
At the end, we were tired, but that had a lot to do with the pace we had to keep. Had we had the luxury to cycle less on some days and include a few more rest days, we wouldn’t have been as tired by the end. But then, it wouldn’t have been much of a challenge if we hadn’t had to push ourselves.
4. Moving Time: 290:45
That doesn’t sound that much to me. I know that includes only the moving hours and not the moments we stopped to look at the map, or take pictures or have lunch.
If I divide those hours by 62 days (we had ten rest days), the average is about 4 hours and 45 minutes per day. That sounds even less! But, if I think of how much physical exercise I would normally do per day on average, then I see that number in a different light.
Also, that is moving hours, not the total hours spent on the road. There were days when we started at sunrise and stopped at sunset. That’s why we also need to look at the elapsed time.
5. Elapsed Time: 415:28
When we look at the time elapsed, we get closer to the truth of how much time we spent on the road.
I say closer, because there were times when my watch batteries gave up before we were done for the day. Like the day we had the marathon ride to Limoux.
When we look at the elapsed time, then the average is close to seven hours per day. That’s a proper working day. Add to that setting up and taking down the campsite each day and we are talking overtime.
But we enjoyed (almost) every minute of the journey. Even the extra long days.
6. Climbing; 27,503 metres
Before I understood how this figure is recorded, I used to feel very disappointed with the distance I had climbed. Like the time when I thought I’d go to Richmond Park to do some climbing training.
I thought I must have done at least two kilometres, but I had only climbed a few hundred metres. That’s because I used to think that it recorded the distance spent cycling uphill. Justin had to explain it to me.
I needed to think vertically, not horizontally. Now that makes much more sense.
That means we climbed over three times the height of Mount Everest (8,848 metres). That’s a lot of climbing.
Surprisingly, a lot of that was in Finland. But more on that when I get to a post I have planned on the worst and best countries.
7. Punctures: 6
Incredibly, we only had six punctures. Although, we could, in theory, count the last puncture when Justin had to take his rear wheel off three times as three punctures. But we won’t.
The first puncture was in Finland, but then we had none until France. Then a few more in France and the last two in Spain.
I think we are lucky to have got away with only six punctures. That’s only one puncture for every 611 kilometres.
So there we have it. Our bicycle tour in numbers.
Until next time, and as always, thank you for being here.