Japan and a year’s cycling stats

We have about 40km to ride to Chitose, south of Sapporo, from where we shortly fly out of Japan and finish our year of riding. Bicycles are simply the best way to travel and have allowed us to see so much more of Australia, Vietnam, Cambodia, New Zealand and Japan than any other modes of transport.

Japan stats as follows.

  • Distance ridden – 3,564km
  • Days riding – 38
  • Average daily distance – 94km
  • Longest day – 141km from Muryama to Nr. Minamisaniku
  • Punctures – as before just one
  • Mechanicals – Many, which I recounted previously with fortunately no more to add
  • Other cyclists – 34
  • Pies – still at 33

The year’s comparative stats are as follows.
Distances ridden:

  • Japan – 3,564km
  • New Zealand – 3,546km
  • Vietnam and Cambodia – 4,472km
  • Australia – 4,016km
  • TOTAL = 15,598km

Days spent riding:

  • Japan – 38
  • New Zealand – 35
  • Vietnam and Cambodia – 40.5
  • Australia – 37.5
  • TOTAL = 151

Average Daily Distance – 103km

Longest Day – Cambodia, Kampong Thom to Siem Reap at 150km

Punctures – 03 with New Zealand winning with none

Other touring cyclists – 173 with New Zealand winning again at 122

Pies – 33 with Australia winning with 23

Sumio Goto

A fantastic artist who we stumbled across as we headed south from the north of Hokkaido to Sapporo. This is ‘big’ pigment painting. Layers of colour layered with a kind of glue, not water, across a canvas which needs to dry before the next wash is applied. They can literally take years to finish with the artist having multiple pictures on the go for prolonged periods until completed. The colours are staggeringly good, vibrant and zinging out of the canvas.

‘Sweets’ from Sapporo 

The ‘Central’ department store contains five floors of stationary, artist materials, pens and paper, calligraphy equipment, a printing shop and cafe. I spent ages just looking at the Japanese water colours – Gansai Tambi – before making a selection. They are renowned for stunning colour pigmentation and for being long lasting. The new watercolour papers are 70% bamboo and at a size closer to A4 rather than the A6 and A5 I’ve been confined to.

For the bin

The ‘Specialised’ top, bought in Perth, has survived remarkably well although much faded and about to disintegrate after 10 months of riding.

The ‘Swrve’ shorts are the second set and have lasted 6 months through both NZ and Japan. They’ve become really grubby and nothing seems to wash the filth out.

Both have been excellent kit and I’m both sad and overjoyed to be saying ‘goodbye’ to them!

After a year of riding

I’m little changed really. 

There’s definitely been some loss of ‘puppy’ fat. We’re both much fitter and able to plough into headwinds all day and to keep moving at around 18km/hr. A year ago we could never have managed this speed or level of endurance.