Cycling from Newcastle to the coast

Two weeks ago I went on a bike ride in the warm wet. I left with a tickle at the back of my throat and came home with a cold that wanted to claim my lungs and use them as handheld hoover bags.

Being in Newcastle, we're more or less 15 miles from the end of the coast to coast cycle route. This means an easy 30 mile bike ride along the Tyne River to the coast and back.

Cycle the Newcastle side and it's mostly green and only a little bit shopping complex. Although unpretty The Royal Quays is still an oil painting compared with the Tyne Tunnel and a perfect stop-off should you need anything from the GAP outlet or indeed, the Land Rover store. Oddly, the Land Rover store seems only to accommodate the folk who don't need or want a vehicle, but require overpriced emblematic eyewear, unsightly bicycles or (a real stunner) a Land Rover badge. On a side note, if being part of the Land Rover club is so important, you would think that buying a badge wouldn't gain you entrance to such a clan unless you've been given one when you bought say, a Land Rover.

Anyway, we cycled the Gateshead to South Shields route. It was fun, but then playing Goonies always is.

We managed to catch a storm cloud and ride with it in the pissing rain all the way to the coast. We saw some fantastically unsettling beach front public art (below) and a small chav asked me if I got my bike in a happy meal.

Given that my bike has a name, a kick stand and a half decent paint job, I've made a habit of photographing it on our outings.

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