The Pear Tree Guest house is a must stay if you are ever looking for a place in Corbridge. Jan and Doug looked after us with impeccable detail providing safe bicycle storage, eating out advice, a comfortable bed and a filling delicious cereal, toast, fruit and feta/mushroom omelet.
A slow drizzle of rain entertained us as we cycled 26 miles on the last leg of our journey, headed for Tynemouth. Today is Good Friday and many more people are sharing the trail today. Lovers, dog walkers, families, cyclists, kids playing, rowing groups on the river, and even a farmer working in the field all provided a much busier experience than previous days.
The sun was successful in spreading the clouds apart for a few minutes and pouring some liquid gold onto the landscape.
Newcastle was hovering along beside our route for a few miles. We had the impression of a large industrial center as we rode by mile after mile of warehouses and business but still on a great trail separated from traffic. As we rode into the center of town the feeling changed and we realized we are in a modern, vibrant, happening city. The mud in the Tyne river when the tide is out reminded us of seeing the tidal bore in Moncton and the similar soft, muddy looking ooze.
You might have guessed that it is coffee time so here is our talkative Swedish host with the delicious cinnamon buns he served. Our conversation touched on many topics in a 30 min. coffee break. We solved immigration, Trump vs. Obama politics, cycling infrastructure, family breakdown, obesity and came to the conclusion that cycling is a simple solution to a complex problem.
Imagine a waterfront with great design, interesting people places, food, business and great architecture both old and new. Here you are.
The bridges along this section of the Tyne River leave one’s mouth open with wonder and admiration for such inspirational design. Imagine an arch suspending a walkway with huge cables having the ability to tilt and allow river traffic to pass. We have placed an order for River Landing in Saskatoon.
The next 5 miles click by and we soon arrive at our destination. This was such a great ride and a great company to work with. We really appreciated everything that Ian from Pedal Power did for us.
We arrive at our hotel in Newcastle for one more night. Our eyes fairly pop out of our heads as we try to make sense of the gaggle of young men lined up at the registration desk. Some in drag, some in bed sheet togas, some in sailor outfits, others in baby and women’s dress, all apparently on their way to a night of intoxication and debauchery!! We ask the fellow at reception for a room ’far from the madding crowd’. He tells us there is a football game tonight between Leeds and Newcastle and these blokes are all from Leeds. Problem understood.
On our way out for a walk we enter the Baltic Center for Contemporary Art and are blown away by the exhibits. My interest is peaked when we are directed to an outdoor observation area and there separated by Plexiglas s a colony of Kittiwakes. Big bonus for me.
Our evening of amusement is not over yet. We enter a Tapas bar to have our supper and a group of women are having a raucous time, all with pink sashes saying Hen Party. On closer look one says Bride to Be and another Mother of the Bride. Apparently this is a big deal around here. Cathy has donned her entrepreneurial hat and started planning ‘Hen Party Kits’ to market back in Saskatoon. As we were leaving I asked the ladies at the end if it would be rude to ask if I could take their picture. They were more than happy to oblige and as they were posing many started to don a face mask of a young man that I’m sure I should know if I was more media savvy.