Further: Simply the most fun I've ever had on a bike
Further was autonomous adventure race, over mountainous mixed terrain, from Ariège through the French Pyrenees, the borderlands of Andorra and Spain, and back to Ariège. 12 set sections with self-navigation between them.
Approx 550km with 13000m of ascent (depending on route choice). At least 2000m of that ascent was on foot, carrying the bike. It turns out that hiking uphill with a bike is my secret skill! Partly because I packed ridiculously light...
Further didn’t feel like a race. It felt like an almighty personal challenge.The other riders were an awesome bunch of crazy and wonderful cyclists -all of them with amazing pedigrees as endurance athletes. And yet also friendly and welcoming and hilarious.
The 12 sections of the course were designed to show the varied and beautiful landscapes, and explore the boundaries of sport and experience, travel and culture.
There were times when I wondered whether Camille Mcmillan had designed the course as an elaborate and cruel experiment in performance art... but ultimately it was the most beautiful, challenging, and happy experience I’ve ever had on a bike.
Thanks Augustus Farmer and Camille Mcmillan for the photos. And thank you Further, for making me go to my limits and a little past them.