Route planning. - Mind boggling

Discussion in 'Time Trial, Long Distance and Endurance' started by steveindenmark, 1 Feb 2019.

  1. I rode Tuscany Road last year. My first long distance ride. 550km and 9500m climbing in 2 days. It was hot and hard but I learnt a lot. I really enjoyed it.

    I signed up for the Transcontinental Race this year and am in ths route planning stages and thought I would share my concerns

    The entry fee is paid. Flight booked. Accomodation for the first couple of days paid. A courier is sorted to take the bike down to a friend near the start. All is well.

    But unlike a lot of people reading this. I am not a "real" cylist. I commute to work and thats about it. I have never ridden an Audax ride or been a member of a club. I have never ridden with a group of riders. I explain this just to let you know I am totally out of my depth. But am really looking forward to it.

    I have been planning my route for the past 2 weeks. Bulgaria, Serbia, Croatia, Slovakia, Austria, Italy. The distances are massive and all roll into one. So much so that after the first day. I could not explain the route to you.

    The River Drava?

    I had never heard of it until I started planning my route. But it appears that we will be keeping each other company for about 500km.

    My route planning is a mix of paper maps, RWGPS, Komoot, Strava, Strava heat maps and the cycle path systems through Italy and Austria. Thats as far as I have got up to now.

    But the enormity of the task has hit me during the route planning stage.

    I will be 61 when we set off. I decided to ride the TCR this year because when you get to 60 its a good idea not to wait too much longer to do things.

    I have no expectations except to meet some old friends and enjoy the experience. How far I travel is not a concern at the moment. Its an experiment.

    I am telling you this just to get it off my chest. You never know it may encourage someone else to have a go next time.
  2. I like Skol

    I like Skol Hold my beer and watch this....

    You cannot possibly be the only person in your position considering this. You just need to link up with some of the others and pool resources, planning and any knowledge you may have between you.
    classic33 likes this.
  3. Milkfloat

    Milkfloat Veteran

    I see it that your challenge is 99.9% more than most cyclists will do. Even if you get 1000km into it and decide it is not for you, then you would have achieved far more than most. Worst case you have a shorter holiday than you originally planned.
    CarlP likes this.
  4. OP

    steveindenmark Guru

    I think a lot of us will be in the same boat. Riding the Tuscany Road already makes me more experienced than some. I know a lot of riders who have taken part in TCR. Some have got to the end and some have not. They are all there to offer advice. They all say one day at a time and its easier when the cycling starts.

    Fortunately we are heading East to West and will be racing towards Lidl, Aldi and Spar supermarkets.
    uphillstruggler likes this.
  5. mjr

    mjr Comfy armchair to one person & a plank to the next

    When is it? Do we know which dot we should be watching?
    rikki likes this.
  6. Ajax Bay

    Ajax Bay Veteran

    East Devon
    "The race is expected to start either late on Friday 26th or early Saturday 27th July 2019" from Burgas, Bulgaria.
    I'm sure Steve will share his race number in due course.
    And it's planned to finish (15 day party) in Brest on 11 August, 10 days before rather more cyclists arrive there!
    Last edited: 1 Feb 2019
  7. OP

    steveindenmark Guru

  8. YukonBoy

    YukonBoy The Monch

    Inside my skull
    That is the idea is it not to stretch yourself? It is not meant to be easy. Sure you will settle into the task.
  9. Ajax Bay

    Ajax Bay Veteran

    East Devon
    Route is (East to West this time):
    * Start: Burgas, Black Sea coast, Bulgaria.
    * Control Point (CP) 1: Buzludzha Monument, Shipka, Bulgaria
    * Control Point (CP) 2: Vranje, Serbia
    * Control Point (CP) 3: Passo Gardena, Corvara, Italy
    * Control Point (CP) 4: L'Alpe d'Huez, France
    * Finish: Brest, Brittany, France
  10. johnblack

    johnblack Well-Known Member

    There was a recent Cycling Podcast about the TCR, good listen. Best of luck, what a great challenge.
  11. OP

    steveindenmark Guru

    I know where I am supposed to be going. Actually planning it in detail and making sure it is correct is really time consuming.

    The first control is quite simple though. It looks like a 200km time trial. Which I have never done before.

    But I recieved a map today. Thats technology I understand.
    Last edited: 1 Feb 2019
    Dogtrousers likes this.
  12. ianrauk

    ianrauk Tattooed Beat Messiah

    Atop a Ti
    This reminds me of a conversation I had with Rimas after his first TCR. I asked how did he work out a route. He said he didn't. He just plotted an A to B on Bike Hike... The day before.. :wacko:
    YukonBoy likes this.
  13. YukonBoy

    YukonBoy The Monch

    Inside my skull
    Some lovely scenic places that will take you. Will be a fantastic ride for you.
  14. Brains

    Brains Guru

    Otherwise use
    You can download it to a phone, which means if you lose your GPS you have a simple back up

    I spent days fine tuning a 4 day route across UK and France. experimenting with moving the route one way and then the other way around a hill or avoiding a village.
    All the planning was to nought.
    Once we were on the ground we largely found the original route as worked out by the app was the best one.

    Therefore I'd say that the option of working it out the day before, whilst not ideal, would work just fine.

    I'd go with whatever it comes up with as your basic route and keep the tinkering to a minimum
  15. Ajax Bay

    Ajax Bay Veteran

    East Devon
    I think the data on the various road options in France and UK are of rather better quality than points (a lot) further south east.
    Not for Steve ('cos it's 'UK') but a fellow (pub) rider introduced me to:
    which gives three options for any route (defined by a start and a finish point).
    Still prefer to design and polish my own on RwGPS, though.
    Last edited: 3 Feb 2019
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