Friday 26th August – From Londonderry to Bushmills, c. 45 miles

Set out via the Guildhall, where we admired the stained glass, then over the Peace Bridge that connects Protestant East Londonderry with Catholic West Derry. Up on the main road until we found our small road that parallels the main road and took us out to Eglington and then Greysteel. Eventually ont the A2 and into Limavady. Wow, a bike shop and it had a Gatorskin 700 x 28c so bought at a price and strapped to back of bike. Then off on the B201 and then off on a minor road over the Binevenagh. Had lunch by the masts on the top. A decent climb. Two touring cyclists from Hebden Bridge went past just after we set off, this road is a cycle route. They were doing Bushmills to Limavady, and since we had the wind behind us they had a tough headwind. They were heading then for the Lough Foyle ferry tomorrow, so it is running… Hit by a squall of rain at the viewpoint over Lough Foyle, sideways strong gusts of rain. Then down to the coastroad with a glittering sea at Castlerock then along and rapidly through Coleraine, then a long straight ten miles to Bushmills towards the end of which my tyre punctured – this is the 7th puncture. I switched the tyre over for my Limavady Conti Gatorskin [NB: no more punctures during the remaining three days of cycling, Gatorskins seem to have solved the problem] where we shopped and discovered we were right by the Youth Hostel. Pleasant Belfast Black Beer from t’shop across the road. Burnt dry flavours. Lovely but not very cared for garden at the hostel – magnificent rosemary, curry plant and lavender raised bed.

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