Good Reads – 'Really Wild Cycling' by Chris Sidwells

Really Wild Cycling by Chris Sidwells
As someone that loves off-the-beaten-track adventures, just the title of Chris Sidwell's new book got me excited. 'Really Wild Cycling' is a pocket handbook to extraordinary 'road less travelled' cycling adventures around the United Kingdom. From Devon Tors to Yorkshire Moors; from the South Downs Way to the Pennine Way; the little book has everything from one day rides to multi-day epics, and something from almost every county across the land.

The rides each have their own collection of pages—with graded difficulty, elevation profiles, OS map references, and an annotated pocket map. Colour photography helps to show the variety of landscapes that you can expect to find on one of the adventures.

Chris has adopted a personal approach with this guidebook. Each ride narrative supplies insight into everything from tea stops to local history; giving context and knowledge to be processed and enjoyed as you ride. The photography is also clearly genuine 'first-hand' material—shot on location by Chris or his riding friends. I have never been a head-down rider, and I love seeing the changing landscapes and unique backdrops that you ride through—Chris's accounts and imagery certainly inspire me to explore a lot more of these areas and routes.

The book has a slightly old-school approach of not providing GPX file links, but instead recommending the use of OS Maps or your own mapping software. I was initially a little sceptical about the lack of digital files, but as Chris correctly highlights in the opening chapter of the book—planning and plotting the route on your own map is all part of the adventure, and it will help you to learn and discover a lot more about a region.

This book has me dreaming up and planning many domestic riding adventures—long weekenders, overnight bikepacking trips, and short loops that I might squeeze in to explore a region when I am away on work or visiting relatives. I love wild riding, as clearly Chris does too; picking up this little book will inspire you to take on your own wild cycling adventures.


Really Wild Cycling by Chris Sidwells

Really Wild Cycling by Chris Sidwells

Really Wild Cycling by Chris Sidwells

Really Wild Cycling by Chris Sidwells

Really Wild Cycling by Chris Sidwells


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