Sunday, 5 July 2015
It's always difficult to plan a route to keep everyone happy, a good mix of climbs, descents and singletrack is the goal and I hope I achieved that. A few tweaks to the route and it'd be pretty much perfect.
There were a couple of trips over the bars but thankfully no lasting injuries. New guy Kris joined us after making contact via the NWAlps facebook group and survived!
The picture of course is staged, hard spirits and cycling don't really mix!
Sunday, 28 June 2015
I disembarked from the train at Great Malvern and straight into the stiff climb up to the town, now I wasn't exactly riding a bike that was ideal for tarmac cruising, the 4" tyres on the fat bike tend to suck the tarmac and put up quite a lot of rolling resistance but I'd fitted spd pedals to do a bit of spinning and once up to speed it rolls fairly well. Hills though are another matter as all told the bike weights a lot nearer to 40lb than 30. There was no choice though now, all i had to do was ride home. I decided to head back to Worcester and then get on the canal to get me nearer to home turf, The route i took wasn't really planned, i just followed my nose keeping the Malvern hills on my left and the river Severn on my right. Because of the proximity of the hills the road was very undulating and i had to battle to keep momentum and keep the speed up. numerous sprints out of the saddle followed by trying to recoup some energy by coasting the down hills was my strategy. If i had a £ for every comment i got on this ride about the size of the tyres I'd have had enough for a slap up meal at the eco-pump tea room in Gheluvelt park, as it was i settle for a huge piece of sponge cake and a pot of tea whilst expailning "those huge tyres" to people also sat in the cafe garden including an old guy who asked if my bike was a Raleigh!
the final stretch was all off road via the Droitwich canal. It was dry on the towpath and i got a good rhythm going only interrupted by a fox stood in the middle of the path, he was in no rush to move either by eventually wandered off through the reeds as ig ot very close.
Knowing i was out with the boys for a beer that evening i had to get a shift on to be back in time and had tea in the saddle in the form of a pasty. i got home with just enough time to shower and change before being picked up
Monday, 22 June 2015
Saturday, 20 June 2015
Even though the weather was less than clement and we didn't start riding until 1900 there seemed to be a inordinate amount of people in the woods near the visitor centre so we headed for beacon side, showed Ian the new singletrack and made our way to Bono. the rain hadn't penetrated under the trees yet and so the ground was hard, dry and grippy, perfect for fast riding.
At the top of Bono I made the fateful decision to use the "son of Bono" option. You enter at speed and enter the twisty and sometimes off camber bits, negotiate the awkward roots, thankfully still dry and then thread your way through the trees on the final drop back onto the original Bono trail.
Those final trees though had other ideas or the elves who fox riders in the Mint Sauce comic strip were lurking behind them and after i had passed between them i heard a sharp crack and a groan from behind me. hitting the brakes and coming to a stop i turned back a little apprehensive to what I was about to find.I found Dan holding his arm and sat on the ground next to his bike. He'd caught a short, stubby but thick (at least 3" thick) branch with his upper arm at full speed. the force of the impact had broken the branch clean off the tree! As painful as it must have been it was a relief that the injury wasn't more serious, no gushing blood or broken bones. Clearly after i had ridden through the elves had pushed the trees closer together and Dan had fallen foul of their mischievousness.
We had to treat Dan's injury with medicinal alcohol in the shape of a beer but we all knew that however painful it was now the morning and the following days would make tonights discomfort pale into insignificance.