It had been a while since I had ridden for 12 hours or more ... never on a cross bike as by the very nature of cyclocross most time spent on a cross bike in one sitting is usually an hour so it seemed fitting to head out and just see what happened.
The route was simple ... head out on the Reivers route to Bellingham (just before Kielder Reservoir) .. swing north east and keep riding along the pennine cycleway until I hit Berwick upon Tweed then turn south and ride home .. easy.
The weather was great in that it was dry and sunny .. what wasn't so great was the headwind I had for the first 3 hours all the way to Bellingham .. so strong at times it was blowing the earphones out of my ears !! .. on a side note thank you to VeloBeats for the producing such great riding music :)
The north westerly journey to Berwick was mainly a crosswind which was great ... the route was very 'rolling' ... never ridden this route so had no idea what to expect .. a ton of small hills.. some medium sized one.. mostly lanes but sometimes off road too .. a real mix ... first stop of the day came after 6 hours in Wooler ... quick Co-Op shop stop for more water and an energy drink then back off again.
I reached Berwick after 8 hours ish of riding and was happy to make the turn for home ... only 70 ish miles remained ... I tried initially following the Sustrans Coast and Castle route No.1 but it was pretty convoluted for a man trying to get home so to eat some miles I jumped reluctantly on the A1 .. luckily this far north its not as busy with a decent if small hard shoulder to ride on... 21 miles later just past Alnwick just as it was getting dark I chose to take the coastal route on a quieter road.
Then at Ashington feeling quite tired I suffered a puncture :( A quick change then home via Bedlington, Seaton Delaval, Earson ... back on familar ground the miles went alot quicker ..
Home finally in 12 hours 40 minutes having covered 180 miles ... so I can ride for 12 hours plus .. discovered a few little niggles I need to work out ... another 2 months of training think I will try another one and see how if at all I have improved :)