/ London to Brighton without organisation. any tips?

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hanspan85 - on 23 Apr 2013
My partner and I are cycling London to Brighton along route 20 for charity. We are not cycling with a big event, just managing it on our own.

Any tips/ advice on

How busy the roads are?
How hilly it is?
What is the most comfy clothing to wear (as we haven't done much (any) training)

ClayClay - on 23 Apr 2013
In reply to hanspan85:
Book hotel in Brighton, book bikes on train for return and go for it. The worst part is getting out of London through Tooting. Just usual cycling gear, shorts etc required depending on the weather (might need a rainproof). It isn't a difficult ride and there are many nice places to stop if you need a rest.
Graham6664 - on 24 Apr 2013
In reply to hanspan85:
> My partner and I are cycling London to Brighton along route 20 for charity. We are not cycling with a big event, just managing it on our own.
>
> Any tips/ advice on
>
> How busy the roads are?
> How hilly it is?
> What is the most comfy clothing to wear (as we haven't done much (any) training)

Have only done the BHF route which happens every june, on Fathers day. Have a look at this, not sure if its exactly the same route but its close, as the author says Ditchling Beacon is the tough climb, although you could probably avoid it if you wanted but you will still have to cross the south downs somewhere.

http://www.cycle-route.com/routes/Toms_London_to_Brighton-Cycle-Route-183.html

Hope this helps,

Enjoy the trip

Graham.
balmybaldwin - on 24 Apr 2013
In reply to hanspan85:

Start early, and preferably a weekend day to avoid most of the traffic in London
Irk the Purist - on 24 Apr 2013
In reply to hanspan85:

Route 20 I believe just follows the A23 (I don't know about North of Crawley) which is basically like cycling along the hard shoulder of a motorway with a barrier to separate you. I'd recommend getting a map and using the many, many rural roads available to you.

I think, also, that route 20 at Handcross Hill is closed because they're widening and straightening the A23. (Long term roadworks)

The BHF London to Brighton route is much better.
Arms Cliff - on 24 Apr 2013
In reply to hanspan85: Agree with the above, Route 20 takes you through some pretty horrible scenery and spends a lot of time near the dual carriageway. The route linked above is a great ride.
evilellie - on 24 Apr 2013
In reply to hanspan85:
I cycled to Brighton from North London using google cycling directions when it was released on the phone app to test it out, which I think used quite a lot of route 20. Going through Croyden was pretty miserable, it sent me on a bit of a forest trail which was unrideable on a road bike, and there was a bit which was meant to be a cycle path next to a duel carriageway, but it was majorly overgrown and I had to get off and climb over the plants for a bit. There were some hills but nothing major.

Now I have a bike satnav I think I'd plan a nicer route based on Tom's route linked to above, but part of that trip was seeing what Google thought were good cycle routes.

I came back on the train without booking (in September, on a Sunday).
nufkin - on 24 Apr 2013
In reply to hanspan85:

As it happens, there's an article on (some of) this trip in the LCC's latest magazine, following old railways for much of the distance from about Guildford. I think it may be unsuited to road bikes in parts, though, and of course you have to ride to Guildford first

(apologies if this was covered in anyone's links above - I didn't bother to check)
hanspan85 - on 27 Apr 2013
Many thanks for all your wonderful tips. I had bought a cycle map from sustrans which had advised route 20 but will rethink the route now. Hotel and train are both on the list to do today.

Thanks again all
Orgsm on 27 Apr 2013
In reply to hanspan85:

Not hilly at all, more what cyclists would call undulating.. Ditching beacon isn't that long, or that steep, less than15 mins max, bottom to top, even for slowest rider. Plenty of pubs along the way for a pint and some lunch, if you follow bhf route. Even at a moderate pace it'll be no more than 5-6 hours. So enjoy the ride scenerary and stop as long as you need, you'd do we'll to run out of daylight...
Tim Chappell - on 27 Apr 2013
In reply to Graham6664:

Graham's suggested route is the one to take, definitely. I've used this from Brighton to Reigate, and the amazing thing about it is how peaceful, rural, and (most of the time) downright beautiful it is, given that it's got monster roads 3 miles either side of it.
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Irk the Purist - on 29 Apr 2013
In reply to nufkin:

The Guildford to Shoreham route is the Downs Link which follows the path of an old railway. Although not that bad for the most part, I wouldn't do the whole thing on a road bike. Punctures a go go.


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