Expedition: Drachten Rugby Tour with Bedford Swifts
Weather Conditions: Nothing to report
Duration: 3 days
High Points: Police escort by Dutch Police on mountain bikes, the pancakes and playing for the mighty Bedford Swifts
Low Points: Low fund raising despite my best efforts
Team: Richard Harpham( Billy no mates)
The mighty Bedford Swifts RUFC were back on the road again with a tour to Drachten in Friesland. The coach was packed and it dawned on me that 300 miles on the road on my own would be a great warm up for my first come back game after retirement with a dislocated knee. Panniers packed, drinking goblet and 2 ft rugby ball secured and I was ready to roll. Cycle to Felixstowe, hop on the ferry and then cycle through Holland to the rugby ground. Apart from my rugby kit I packed light with a bivvi bag and camp mat. Turns out the ferry was 99 miles away so I decided to cycle around the deck to bag the 100 miles for the day.
I opted for local road maps and went through lots of tracks and peninsulas to stay off the main routes. It was fantastic to explore Holland and Friesland by bike. As a nation the Dutch embrace biking and mostly I was able to avoid roads with there gold standard cycle tracks. I arrived at Drachtden to much amusement. Our friends from Long Island Rugby Club were also touring from United States so I was offered several beverages to help me rehydrate. How thoughtful?! It was a simple adventure and a great alternative to the team bus. The concept can be repeated time and time again. Going on holiday, perhaps you can cycle or walk there or mix it with public transport.