Sunday, 3 April 2016
Today's ride simply flew by. The weather was fine; cloudy but not too cold and my mind was elsewhere. Before I quite realized it, I was on the last leg home.
SATURDAY, 19 MARCH - Let's now continue the description of my route...
Starting/Ending Points: Usk to Newport
Distance: 15.5 miles
Travel Time: 1 hour 30 mins.
Usk to Caerleon: I head out of the car park turning right onto Maryport Street and continue out of town going past the old prison. This first section is also NCN Route 42. It's lovely and flat and perfect for warming up after having sat for a few minutes in the cafe. The road snakes along side of the River Usk for a couple of miles and then veers left as it heads up into some slightly rolling hills of Llanllowell and past the quaint Greyhound Inn.
It's nice to slow down a bit at times to catch the details. You can see more in 20 miles on a bicycle than you can in a thousand miles by car.
Further on at the fork in the road the cycle route continues straight toward Wentwood, but I turn right and drop down the fast little hill, ducking under the A449 and cruising into Llantrisant.
From here it's an easy cruise past the turn off to Newbridge on Usk, down the "Llantrisant Mile", and up over "Gypsies Tump". Then it's a short glide looking out across the Usk before going back under the A449.
It's a short slow climb followed by another longer slower climb, but then I turn yet again under the A449, drop down a speedy little hill and as the road narrows, I cruise easily alongside the Celtic Manor Golf Course. At this point I've now cycled 28 miles... my halfway point for the day!
Next I head across the golf course by the driving range using the little white suspension bridge over to Usk Road. I turn left and head up into Caerleon.
Caerleon to Newport: Unfortunately dear readers, I haven't any photos of Caerleon because of all the turns, but I'll get to work on that. (And to be honest, it's an interesting notion to look back over the route and realize what I have and haven't photographed.)
Essentially, I snake my way around through the village to join NCN Route 88 by the Roman Amphitheatre and Barracks. It's a lovely traffic-free route that follows along the Usk all the way to the Riverfront in Newport where it joins NCN Route 47.
It's amazing to see all that Newport is developing along this section. The housing and shopping areas are coming together nicely. And it's a great urban panorama to cycle through.
I usually stop at the WWI memorial (just past the A48) to have my lunch looking out toward the Transporter Bridge. This is where NCN Route 47 ends at the junction of NCN Route 4. After a quick bite to eat, I'll scoot down the dual-use pavement a short piece to pop into Fanny's Rest Stop Cafe for a quick hello.
I know it took a while to get this one posted... I'll try to get the next one up sooner "Section 3; Newport to Oakdale".
cheers! ~ cm