European cycling trip on my Brompton

Rough outline of route
Rough outline of route

I’ve just completed a six-week 4,000 km European tour on my Brompton bicycle.

My brief tour diary entries are below. These were daily updates, blogging from my mobile phone.

In the next three five days I’ll post a blog with some more technical information which I hope will be of interest and help to anyone thinking about going on a similar kind of adventure. It will include things like the bike set-up, equipment, navigation, camping and things I learned about cycle touring along the way. If there’s anything you’d like to know in particular, please add a comment or get in touch via the contact form.

Thanks for reading. You may want to go from the first entry or see the blog entries in date order.

p.s. If anyone knows of a small flat to rent in the Kentish Town that has at least two of, ‘is interesting’, ‘is cheap’, ‘has a garden’ – please let me know!

15 thoughts on “European cycling trip on my Brompton”

  1. Bonjour Jacques! (Just to make you wistful..)
    Congratulations on getting back safely! Thanks for doing the blog, it’s been fun following you and being reminded of my travels in France in the summer.
    A couple of things I’ve been thinking about..
    I think your gear teeth are ok, they have a flat top by design, but you need to excavate all the mud out from down the side of them. I use a very small Allen key and running water. It’s time consuming but quite therapeutic and pleasing when done. I found French grass was more inclined to get stuck there than our own stuff.
    How much weight did you have in the front bag? The badly designed block is rated to hold up to 10 kg. I’ve never overloaded mine and I’ve twice had the mounting bolts shear…I don’t use it now!
    I would suggest you get TomTom on your phone then you’ll never be lost!
    Looking forward to your next posts!
    Best wishes!

    1. Thanks Roland! I will be giving the bike a thorough clean and inspection shortly. Cheers for the allen key tip.
      The front bag weighs 8.5kg. Sometimes I would have gone over 10kg (e.g. carrying extra 1.5 litre water bottles, shopping, etc.). Before I left I had been tempted to make charging devices easier by doing something similar to this, but decided against it as I didn’t want to weaken the mount.
      My Garmin had serious issues routing yesterday, choosing ridiculously long diversions to get to a destination, and even switching itself off every time I typed in ‘Tooting’, so I went with street signposting in the end!

      1. With the size of your bag it looked heavier than that. Mine is only anS bag, so smaller. I was out on my Moulton this morning and passed another cyclist looking at a paper map, how quaint! At least the battery won’t run out..

  2. Well done Jim and welcome back! Looking forward to seeing how thin you’ve gotten after all those miles. I’m imagining you looking a bit like Gazza.

  3. Well done that man!!!
    What an achievment and what a wonderous blog and photos are fantastic.
    As i already said, You,my brother are my hero! I’m serious. You’re the man.
    Love and welcome home.
    John xx

  4. Haven’t had Internet for ages,so only just caught up with the blogs! Excellent read! Crazy, but so cool!
    Was great to have you here – hope to welcome you again soon!!
    Glad you bot home safe. When you gonna plan the next trip? You’ve still Lichtenstein still to visit… 😉

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