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Adventure around the corner

If you're new into bikepacking, you've probably seen a guide telling you to try and find a spot for your first night under the stars somewhere close to your home. It's also a great suggestion if you're suffering from a lack of time for any reason.

It took me over a year to finally be able to set off for a bikepacking ride with an overnight stay out in the nature. It was also meant to be the very first overnighter for my friend Dan, who's been preparing for this event for a long time too. Both of us running families and having busy work life could finally carve out an evening + morning for our trip to Purbeck. Our destination: somewhere between Kimmeridge and Worth Matravers, so not too far at all from our starting point in Bournemouth, but it's a place with stunning views and remote enough to feel the detachment from our daily lives.

Heavy rain is coming
Heavy rain is coming

Change of plans

As we embarked on the chain ferry towards Studland, the dark clouds hanging above our heads started to worry us a little. All the weather apps we had on our phones displayed heavy rain and 40+ mph wind for the following 3 hours followed by... the clear sky... Love you too English weather!

I don't mind getting wet. Cold doesn't bother me much either. But a combination of any of those with gusty winds puts me off from cycling, especially loaded with bags. Luckily - there was my favorite pub Bankes Arms on our way, just 20 min cycling down the road from the ferry. It would have been rude not to use its hospitality in those dreadful circumstances (also, did I mention it was Friday?)

Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy.

Benjamin Franklin

Perfect spot

There's no need to describe what a visit in a rural pub during a downpour looks like. It was also a wise decision to further alter our plans and set our destination closer to where we were, having to hide from a still fairly strong wind (wind caused by the weather of course ;) Bramble Bush Bay Beach would never be a place for me to spend the night on, but I guess not many people would want to risk getting wet and battered by the hurricanes that night... We managed to find a spot relatively sheltered from the gusts, so our 2 tiny tents stayed in place all night. With the clear sky we had an excellent panoramic view of the harbour going to sleep... It's weird how place you know becomes a complete surprise when you visit it at night.

Pitching a tent on the beach of the Poole Harbour
Pitching a tent on the beach of the Poole Harbour

Bacon classic

Early morning welcomed us with a crisp air and astonishing views. Topped up with fresh coffee and as usual, bacon rolls, we packed our things, made sure to leave no trace and cycled back home. With so little distance covered, this was truly "an adventure just around the corner", and I loved it. As they say, an adventure is when things don't go to plan.

Photo of Marek, founder of Bikes and Bacon

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