It was a surprise to hear “Good Morning” behind me as I passed Capel-y-Ffin and approached the steepest part of Wales ‘ highest road, the Gospel Pass.
Matt was from near Swindon and had just finished his finals. He was now getting away from it all by cycling to Pwllheli to meet up with family. As he was staying in bunkhouses not camping, he had less kit than I did and a lighter bike (Specialized Allez). This would probably have made him faster up the hills even without the 40 year age difference. He seemed more interested in having company than racing ahead, as today was his easy day and a warm up for tomorrow’s 100+ miles from Rhayader to Pwllheli.
We had a lovely descent to Hay-on-Wye, enjoying the views of the Wye valley. After coffee in Hay we carried on past Boughrood and Erwood, places familiar from canoeing days.
By the side of the road we saw two cyclists sitting on a bench admiring the view. We stopped to say “Hi” and as it was 1 pm this turned into our lunch stop. They were students from Colorado, making their first ever bike tour – from Dublin to Budapest. They had stayed last night at the bunkhouse near Rhayader where Matt was headed for tonight. Small world.