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Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Day 2 Maidenhead to Oxford

Day two started off OK -- we had our usual issues getting out of town. The trail surface still wasn't very good once out of town so progress was slow.

Once thru Reading and heading for the countryside this guy on a bike wearing a bright orange shirt rode straight at us. I though he was going to run into us but it turns out it was a friend, Pete, who lives in Reading and checking the status updates he realized we rode by his house. He took off to find us (not knowing the route we'd take).

So he rode with us for a while when I heard a loud hissing from my rear tire. Oh no's a flat!

We pulled over and started the process of putting in a spare tube. We couldn't find anything stuck in the tire and the tube didn't have a major leak so ???. After a struggle to get the tire on and off the rim (the problem with Schwalbe Marathons) we were finally ready to go.

Well, almost. In getting the wheel on and off we knock the derailleur out of adjustment. So I didn't have a low gear and if I shifted to high the chain would go off the sprocket altogether. Not a good thing. So we pulled over and fiddled with it and at least got it so I wouldn't lose the chain, but still no lowest gear.

By this time it was getting late and we realized we wouldn't make Oxford and the next train station in that direction would be a tough bet, so we decided to ride back to the Reading station and take the train there. Pete took us a different route that was much more scenic and almost all paved -- I have no idea why that isn't the official route.

Out adventures weren't over. It turns out do to track repair there is no train service between Didcot and Oxford, only bus service. We got to Didcot and since the passengers seemed to mostly be people heading to Oxford for a Saturday night out there was not much luggage and they let us stash the bikes in the bus luggage compartment.


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