We found Bignor Hill by accident – the road went either way and because it was there, took the path to the left and hoped we’d found an interesting route over the Downs to Chichester. But the road got smaller and steeper and felt the car was clinging to the hill like a mountain goat and began to feel scared – i am very scared of heights. We passed a few cyclists also struggling and thought – well im pleased we arnt going the other way. We offered them a lift.
We got to the top and huge relief. Spotted someone holding a huge aerial – who told us she and her husband come there to pick up radio signals. The South Downs way crosses the car park and other walking routes pass here over the Downs. There is a legend that the distinctive ridges curling around Bignor Hill were cut by a giant dragon or worm wrapping his enormous tail around the hill.
Asked the people could we carry on – but they told me it was a dead end and i had to go back the way we came. Thou we were a long way from home – considered calling for help to get us down or just sitting there until someone reallised we wernt around.
Eventually we did set off down but just as we reached the steepest part, met a car coming up the single track – with a big drop on our side. The woman gestured to me to move over and embarassed to say, shook my head – i just couldnt. So she reversed with incredible speed backwards down the hill to a wider space and the air was a little blue as she went past.
Life always puts things in perspective – that evening watched the Olympian men cyclists going up and down three times a 500m mountain in Rio – with a sickening downhill section and several flew off their bikes but were caught in the netting on the side with massive stone kerbs and last night horrified to see the Dutch cyclist Van Vleuten suffer similar fate but with major injurys. We were pleased to hear she was conscious.
Incredible that from intensive care she is reassuring the public that she will be ok.