Freshwater with Saddle Skedaddle

Last year, Saddle Skedaddle teamed up with HF Holidays to deliver the cycling elements of their holidays. This August, I had my first taste of guiding, HF style.

Some of the Isle of Wight's beautiful coastline
Some of the Isle of Wight’s beautiful coastline

The destination was Freshwater Bay on the Isle of Wight, where HF have a fantastic and recently refurbished hotel base. On arrival, strong winds were blowing from across the Atlantic. After a long day travelling, fellow guide Phil and I headed out for a run along the cliff tops above the sea, hoping the weather would improve for the cycling later in the week.

There's some steep climbs on the island!
There’s some steep climbs on the island!

The cycling group consisted of three families, who were waking for two days and cycling for three. The days they spent walking allowed us to scout out the cycling routes and explore the island. First up was a circular loop starting at Carisbrooke castle. The second day was a loop from Freshwater, calling in at Yarmouth and (according to local riders) the cafe with the best cakes on the island, before heading back over Tennyson Down. The finale was a point to point route starting at the coast at Sandown, journeying inland to Newport before following the river Medina to the sea again at Cowes.

Cafe stop at Chessell Pottery Barns. Best cake on the island
Cafe stop at Chessell Pottery Barns. Best cake on the island

Our hopes of good weather were granted and we were treated to a fantastic week of sunshine and cycling.