Over the next few weeks I’m going to be putting some of my favourite routes online on my Facebook page. If you’re after fast, single radius bends, you’re probably in the wrong place! But if you want some roads that demand good observation skills to spot sudden sharp corners, the ability to deal with decreasing radius turns and elevation changes, and constant braking, acccelerating and steering, you’ll probably enjoy them.
But mind – many of them are bumpy in places, poorly surfaced in others, not particularly wide so oncoming trucks and buses can take up much of the road, and as they cross areas of farming activity, you’re likely to come across tractors and mud, or animals or their deposits. They’re probably more suited to an agile middleweight or adventure sport style bike than an R1 or a Fireblade with the suspension set up for track days. But on the plus side they often bypass main trunk routes which are busy at peak holiday seasons and offer beautiful views across quieter parts of the UK. One final tip – there are stretches on some of these roads where fuel’s a bit hard to come by, so keep an eye on the tank.
The first installment is an alternative route to the West Country from the south east of England. If you’ve done the run to the West Country more than a few times, I’m sure you’ll have had your fill of the M25/M3/A303, so here an an alternative route that goes via the M27 and the New Forest instead. Yes, there’s some motorway and dual carriageway, but put together the route avoids the M3 and most of the A303 so it avoids the worst of the congestion and the single carriageway roads are often tough, technical and twisty – if you enjoy bends it’s a great route for an all-day ride to the south west.