Author Topic: Have you been out today?  (Read 2366597 times)

David Martin

  • Thats Dr Oi You thankyouverymuch
Re: Have you been out today?
« Reply #525 on: May 13, 2008, 10:25:12 pm »
I tella lie. I thought I was going climbing tonight but my climbing partner G spent all afternoon tryingto get hold of me. "I'm ridingthe Etape [Caledonia] on Sunday and want to get a few more miles in - fancy a ride?"

The only riding we have done together before is on laden bikes on our way into bothies. He is the antithesis of me - very slightly built, but with little road bike experience. But he does have a shiny new boardman road bike  :thumbsup:

So I did a quick change, got Fred ready to go (the Pro2 Grip are starting to look a little tired after the winter), bottles filled and planned a quick route in my head.

G arrived and off we went. As I had anticipated he was much faster than me on the uphills - something to do with a 30kg weight difference. We cruised out through Birkhill and Tinky's Brae, waved at the welcoming committee for the club APR and then passed the various groups as they approached the finish (they were going the other way). F was still hanging on to the front group despite his first club weekender - 250 miles in two days for a 16yo.

We took a left and were on a road I had never ridden before. It was an absolute gem. Single track rising gently past a farm, then dropping into a hanging valley. Skirting the sides of the loch. Evening sun lit up the golden grass and gorse in that magical way that only a Scottish sun can. If you could bottle it you'd be a millionaire. Dead quiet apart from the bleating of lambs and gunting of tupping rams and ewes.

The road swings round and drops into Lundie. Only 500m away is the main road, but it is as good as 500 miles. We follow the road to the end of the village, a swng to the left on a steep hairpin and the climb starts to the top of Tullybaccart. My left calf is cramping, but my riding style is better than G's and we're not really pushing it so I can shift the effort and eventually manage to work the cramp around the mucsle and out.

Main road. It is eerily deserted as we ride side by side into Perth and Kinross. Yellow gorse by the side of the road in a pastoral idyl.

Before the road drops away down the hill we swing left for a short climb to the stunning descent through Littleton. The first part is open, fast and clear. Then the road follows the river as it twists down the gorge, steep banks of verdant green on one side, trees obscuring the water on the other. I know the road and let the bike run faster than is probably prudent, braking hard for the one tighter corner as the midges die hard across my face. And then run out, open countryside, and another little hanging dell. The road to the right is Jock's Brae, a steep climb, and a very entertainign descent if you have the bottle. Slightly lumpy and a bit of a curve at the top but otherwise dead straight and oh so fast.

But htat is not our route. We swing left, past the saw mill and through the clouds of insects. Jink left and cross the stream rising out of the saddle to blast the wee rise the other side, then drop through the village.   

Count the left turns. 3rd left and we are on the home run. Rise and fall throguh Flocklones and past the Cat's Hotel. Only three more climbs to go and they are all short. It is into the wind now as we reach the junction and turn left to rise up again. Dundee sits clear on teh horizon,not so very far away in miles but a different continent in demeanour. Up we go, tired legs straining a bit. I'm starting to get the better of G. Fat and unfit I may be but I know how to ride a bike. 

We turn towards Liff. My favourite road sign - road unsuitable for HGVs. A twist to cross the bridge, best not taken at speed till you know what is there, then immedieatelyout of the saddle up the step. Respite. Second step. Spin and Liff.

The old hospital is now luxury apartments. We greet a group of teenagers out on MTB's - there are so many people out on bikes this year - and roll on to Gourdie Brae. A bit of assertive traffic management is needed to gain access to the park. Mostly deserted at this time of the evening  the ducks are resting. Admiral Duncan's house is a fitting backdrop - the sandstone a fine complement in the evening light to the rich greens and vibrant blossom of the trees.

All that is left is a short stint of city riding, just a mile more and back to my place. An absolutely fabulous evening. I wish I could have shared the colours and scenery with you. Pick the best Scottish calendar you can - it won't go far enough. A beautiful evenings ride, 24 miles in just under 90 mins. Hilly but not excessively so. And an unexpected bonus with which to finish the day.
"By creating we think. By living we learn" - Patrick Geddes

Jaded

  • The Codfather
  • Formerly known as Jaded
Re: Have you been out today?
« Reply #526 on: May 13, 2008, 10:31:19 pm »
Three trips to school today. 11 miles each.

The last one was best as it was a Parent's Committee meeting and I was not encumbered by children and wife! Loaded up with three Dinottes and the new helmet camera I had a whale of a time. 17.mph avergae, which is good for me.  :thumbsup:
If you don't like your democracy, vote against it.

tiermat

  • According to Jane, I'm a Unisex SpaceAdmin
Re: Have you been out today?
« Reply #527 on: May 14, 2008, 01:35:04 pm »
Been for a little pootle around the green, trouble is the green is 10 miles away! :)

Then have just got back from a 5 mile shakedown of my bike, after it's service, all is well it actually goes and stops now (apart from squeeling like a stuck pig when using the back brake!)
I feel like Captain Kirk, on a brand new planet every day, a little like King Kong on top of the Empire State

annie

Re: Have you been out today?
« Reply #528 on: May 14, 2008, 01:53:27 pm »
Went for my usual run and then the gym, also a quick session on the new turbo, went too fast and hard and only managed 20 minutes on some course in Majorca, couldn't go outside as was waiting in for a delivery.


Re: Have you been out today?
« Reply #529 on: May 14, 2008, 07:13:37 pm »
no, because my ruddy clients wanted a conference call at 7.00.  Hopefully tomorrow...

clarion

  • Tyke
Re: Have you been out today?
« Reply #530 on: May 14, 2008, 07:40:42 pm »
I've been out in the sunshine.  One of my cleat bolts came out, which meant I couldn't get my left foot out (exciting turning right on a busy road).

Later took off over to Clapham Junction - just ten minutes, and I think I'm getting over the psychological barrier of a small hill nearby.  Swift zoom home past the traffic with Butterfly. :)
Getting there...

Wowbagger

  • Dez's butler
    • Musings of a Gentleman Cyclist
Re: Have you been out today?
« Reply #531 on: May 14, 2008, 08:06:27 pm »
Ten miles of commuting. Quite pleasant today.

Twice I was overtaken by other cyclists, which is quite unusual: not because I'm fast but because there are not so many of them.

The first of these overtook on the inside for no good reason at all and I caught him at the lights. I scrutinised his Trek frame carefully. "Just checking to see if your bike was made by BMW," said I. He saw the funny side and apologised.
Eating's a serious business. Don't bollocks around wagging your tail.

Maladict

Re: Have you been out today?
« Reply #532 on: May 14, 2008, 10:03:09 pm »
Returning from the Lake District.

Realised I'd managed to catch the rush hour bike ban from London to Cambridge so went and sat in a park (something or other square gardens, near KX) for a couple of hours in the sun, and read yacf and upgraded the version of google mail on my phone.  :)

Re: Have you been out today?
« Reply #533 on: May 14, 2008, 10:40:15 pm »
  I was out today with 16 others from South Bucks CTC on a wonderful ride in the scenic countryside of the Chiltern Hills and the Vale of Oxford with glorious sunshine and a cooling breeze. It was a fantastic day.

  Difficult as it may seem, something else really made my day - at the lunch stop. On such a glorious day it was quite natural for everyone to choose to sit outside. I spotted Peter and his wife sitting inside so I decided to sit with them as they looked left out and I had met them but once before, last year. Peter is about 70 and is in a wheelchair. Exactly why I can't remember but he will never ride again, making life a tad difficult. Something in me hurt for Peter.

  The conversation included an Austrian cyclist Peter has helped. They bumped into him while on holiday in Somerset where he asked for directions. Peter described his bike as like a baker's bike with a massive front basket, in which sat a fully-laden rucksack. For directions all he had was a map of the UK torn out of an atlas! Peter explained that he was a cyclist and ended up spending many days cycling with him while he was over here. The chap had later been in contact and invited them over to his place (in Austria) to be his guests for a holiday, which they enjoyed immensely.

  What made my day was to see how Peter's face lit up as he recounted those glorious days on his bike, going out of his way to help this foreigner. To see this wheelchair-confined (ex?)-cyclist for a short time happy and reliving wonderful and exciting memories was even more thrilling that the rest of the day.

Thanks for reading this far.
Lovely story, RR.

Btw, did I see you on Sunday early afternoon near Walton Bridge, you in a US Postal jersey?

Re: Have you been out today?
« Reply #534 on: May 14, 2008, 10:51:25 pm »
That is a nice story road-runner, it obviously did him good to recount those stories.

And good one wowbagger. There are lots of cyclists around now that the weather is good, and there is some undertaking going on that riles me...that's a good line you have there.

I cycled to my mum's this evening through Maida Vale, drivers were quite pleasant but then I've cut out the very narrow streets lined with parked cars as I always had 'incidents' on them.

Jaded

  • The Codfather
  • Formerly known as Jaded
Re: Have you been out today?
« Reply #535 on: May 14, 2008, 11:06:59 pm »
5  miles on the school run and then 66 miles to go see a game of rounders, which we lost. I nearly beat the minibus back, over 30 miles.  :thumbsup: *

* It got caught up in the M5 closure.

My first metric 100 since November. In effect my December, 12th month one that I never did.

So that's 100 miles in two days.
If you don't like your democracy, vote against it.

CathH

Re: Have you been out today?
« Reply #536 on: May 15, 2008, 08:20:08 am »
What is it about cycling in rain that I enjoy so much?  Gave the Rainlegs a good workout - they are an excellent bit of kit.  The main thing I like about them is that they keep the tops of my thighs warm.

vince

Re: Have you been out today?
« Reply #537 on: May 15, 2008, 08:21:23 am »
I rode 23 miles home after dropping my car off with friends. A lovely summer evening, on some of my favourite roads in the Peak. It was also my last ride before the Friday night ride.

A long road up to Longcliffe, which I usually do the other way around:



This is absolutely one of my favourite descents, long and sweeping before tightening up at the bottom with a series of sharp turns into a steep limestone dale. It's not as much fun to climb it!

After this it was a fast shallow descent to Grangemill and a steady climb to Winster, a largeish village high up in the White Peak:



From this point there is a lovely fast descent into Darley Dale, through Wensley on almost traffic free roads. At weekends these roads can be heavy with traffic, but in the evening and early morning they are usually very quiet and tourist free.

At Darley Dale I began the long climb up to Beeley Moor:



I'm hoping that if I made it up this I should manage Ditchling early Saturday morning. This went on for half a mile, plus another mile of climbing at a lower rate through Peak Forest before reaching the straight road over the top of the Moor and then dropping down into Chesterfield to the chippy and home 8)

tiermat

  • According to Jane, I'm a Unisex SpaceAdmin
Re: Have you been out today?
« Reply #538 on: May 15, 2008, 11:48:13 am »
What a glorious day, set off with the intention of riding the top loop of Tiermat's Tyke Ride, in preparation for June 14th.  Got 10 miles in, on a long drag up hill, needed to drop down into the granny ring and BAM! Chain suck, brought the chain up round the chainstay and there it did stay...

Had to undo the chainring bolts, remove outer and middle ring to free the chain, and then it now looks like I need a new middle ring :(

Oh well, off to the LBS with me then (only got it back from there yesterday after a service)

Anyways got a nice 17 miles in the sunshine and I am feeling good...
I feel like Captain Kirk, on a brand new planet every day, a little like King Kong on top of the Empire State

clarion

  • Tyke
Re: Have you been out today?
« Reply #539 on: May 15, 2008, 01:40:58 pm »
:(  Oh that sucks! ;)

*runs*
Getting there...

Re: Have you been out today?
« Reply #540 on: May 15, 2008, 02:01:27 pm »
What is it about cycling in rain that I enjoy so much? 

After days of cycling in lovely weather, it was quite refreshing cycling in the rain this morning !
Luckily I had my Goretex  ;D

toekneep

  • Its got my name on it.
    • Blog
Re: Have you been out today?
« Reply #541 on: May 15, 2008, 03:20:25 pm »
I've just been shopping. Exploring our new surroundings and searching out independent greengrocers. Not very successful unfortunately, I ended up having to give in and go to Sainsburys to get fresh Corriander. Bugger. (The potted Corriander that I grew from seed isn't quite up to being harvested yet.)

Cycling around the Fylde is very pleasant, it being entirely flat apart from the odd railway bridge. I'm a bit worried I am going to lose my Welsh hill legs very quickly.

clarion

  • Tyke
Re: Have you been out today?
« Reply #542 on: May 15, 2008, 04:55:02 pm »
Finally got the Woodrup out on the road again.  What joy!

I'll never be the fastest rider on the road, but I can get up there a bit.  And a gently rolling 10k was a good shake-down ride. :)

Spinning out just over 40kph down Earlsfield Road means it goes up just as fast as I want it to - any faster, I'll freewheel, thanks ;)  And it's light enough to climb OK too (well, better than me ;D )
Getting there...

Re: Have you been out today?
« Reply #543 on: May 15, 2008, 09:19:55 pm »
Don't know if it was just my wettish roads, but boy oh boy was it slippery out today.
I had a cracking rear wheel slide at one stage and the old gent walking his dog nearly spat his teeth out, and he was only watching from the other side of the road  ;D

Re: Have you been out today?
« Reply #544 on: May 15, 2008, 10:25:38 pm »
We took the new tandem to Wandsworth's mayor-making ceremony. Not a long ride, but fun swooping past the queueing traffic and worth it for the looks when people realised that we had cycled and that I had cycle shorts under the red silk dress. ;D

Quote from: Kim
^ This woman knows what she's talking about.

clarion

  • Tyke
Re: Have you been out today?
« Reply #545 on: May 15, 2008, 10:31:05 pm »
Got to speak to several councillors & two MPs (well, one very briefly...).  Great networking, with one keen Tory* councillor wheeling her friends across regularly to speak to us :thumbsup:

Several people had their eyes opened (not just when Butterfly flashed her shorts ;D )





Well, it is Wandsworth, and I did wash my hands afterwards... ;)
Getting there...

LEE

Re: Have you been out today?
« Reply #546 on: May 15, 2008, 10:56:24 pm »
30 miles and got visited by the P-fairy for first time since August and 3500 miles.

The clue that my tyre had gone was the sphincter-clenching broadside as I rounded a fast bend near home.  "Rear-Wheel Steering" always looks great when Valentino Rossi does it in MotoGP but less impressive when my bike decides to do it without warning me.

I've forgotten how to fix them it's been such a long time.

Eccentrica Gallumbits

  • Rock 'n' roll and brew, rock 'n' roll and brew...
Re: Have you been out today?
« Reply #547 on: May 15, 2008, 11:03:46 pm »
Only to work and back, but my and Anth's paths finally crossed. Given that we commute the same route but in opposite directions, you'd think we'd have already in the 6 weeks I've been going that way. But I'm a lazy mare who hates mornings and has flexitime so I'm usually in later ...
My feminist marxist dialectic brings all the boys to the yard.


Wowbagger

  • Dez's butler
    • Musings of a Gentleman Cyclist
Re: Have you been out today?
« Reply #548 on: May 16, 2008, 12:11:21 am »
Cycling around the Fylde is very pleasant, it being entirely flat apart from the odd railway bridge. I'm a bit worried I am going to lose my Welsh hill legs very quickly.

You could always get a train to Burnley once a week and cycle up and down the Nick of Pendle just for the hell of it. :thumbsup:
Eating's a serious business. Don't bollocks around wagging your tail.

clarion

  • Tyke
Re: Have you been out today?
« Reply #549 on: May 16, 2008, 05:14:57 pm »
Had a nice swoop through the back roads of south london - Putney & N Wimbledon as well as Wandsworth/Tooting.  There's some sleepy leafiness about - and some madly grandiose houses too!

Got annoyed with a galaxy rider ignoring a red light when some schoolchildren were crossing (somehow I feel those riding tourers should have a higher level of manners - irrational, I know), and with a WVM who crowded me on a railway bridge.  I reached up & pushed his door mirror, then felt guilty that he probably wouldn't be able to see whoever was on the inside.  But he'd have hit me with it if I hadn't, so I hope he had the good sense to sort it out when he was stopped in the traffic.  I thought about staying back from him so he couldn't retaliate, but the traffic was so laughably stuck that I just went past car after car after car, a broad smile across my lips, until I was into the back streets near home, and feeling safe and untouchable.

I heart my bike :)
Getting there...