Author Topic: Yr Elenydd 2018 edition  (Read 5022 times)

Re: Yr Elenydd 2018 edition
« Reply #25 on: April 09, 2018, 06:56:07 pm »
Well with the Hard boiled, Easter Arrow and this, I think my aqua phobia is almost cured!
I drove to the start in my Goretex jacket and kept on until I arrived home. When the rain started I should have put my rainlegs on, but it didn’t seem too bad at first. My £4 Aldi winter cycling gloves are no longer waterproof since I put them in the washing machine, but they still give reasonable insulation when soaking wet. I’ll have to try reproofing them. Despite overshoes my socks were eventually soaking too, but my feet weren’t too cold. Main thing was that my core stayed warm with two wicking base layers and a long sleeve jersey under my Goretex, plus I ate a few energy bars between controls as much for keeping warm as giving energy for the climbs.
I had a standard compact 50/34 chainset and a 12-30 cassette and I’d used the 30 sprocket plenty of times before reaching the Devil’s staircase, but still made it up all of the steep hills without walking. That was until almost the summit of the long steep climb out of Devil’s Bridge when my rear gear cable snapped. The prospect of the mountain road to Rhayader, the Mynd and other hills in between seemed daunting, but I had little choice but to set the bike up as a two speed and carry on. At least all of the steepest hills were done. I just removed the cable, stowed it in my bag and turned the H adjusting screw all of the way in. This put the chain on the fourth smallest 15 tooth sprocket giving me gears of 61 and 90 for the rest of the ride. Worst thing was I sprained my left wrist when I lifted the back of the bike to turn the pedals round. This made it painful when I had to climb out of the saddle and pull on the hoods.
I had to walk the last bit of the steep climb after the old lead mines, but at the left hand bend, I remounted and rode all of the remaining climbs to the finish. Being forced to climb seated in a bigger gear than usual helped me find my climbing legs a bit and I doubt that the mechanical cost me more than 15 minutes including carrying out the temporary fix.
Thanks to John and all of his helpers for another excellent edition of the event. It was great to see Danial for the first time since LEL and I particularly enjoyed the hot food at the controls and the finish this time.


U.N.Dulates

  • aka John Hamilton
Re: Yr Elenydd 2018 edition
« Reply #26 on: April 09, 2018, 07:15:04 pm »
Well that was a wet one. The weather played havoc with the entry - out of 154 entries only 102 took the start, and 19 of those bailed (mostly early on). A couple of non-validated riders and 1 final finisher 45 minutes out of time left us with just 80 validated finishers - the lowest since I took over from Dave Pountney. It was a slow year too, the first finisher was an hour slower than last year and half the finishers were back after midnight.

All that rain, on top of what was an already wet week meant that the final challenge for many was getting out of the camping field without getting stuck in the mud. Some pushing was needed for a few, and one spot of towing, and the farmer's tractor had to be called in to action for a couple of campervans on Sunday morning.

Thanks to the low finish rate my freezer and cupboards are now full of leftover food - won't be needing to shop for the Irish Mail.

Thanks to Linda, Helen, Danial, Anne and Margaret for their help at the start, finish & Abergwesyn; all the controls and particularly the Bowls Club and Wheelwrights for their usual sterling service.

Next up, the Irish Mail on Sat 9th June.

simonp

  • Omnomnomnipotent.
Re: Yr Elenydd 2018 edition
« Reply #27 on: April 09, 2018, 07:57:18 pm »
Thanks for your efforts John. I might see you on the Irish Mail.

Phil W

Re: Yr Elenydd 2018 edition
« Reply #28 on: April 09, 2018, 11:26:59 pm »
Looking back, Garmin recorded temperatures between 7 and 9 degrees. But it did feel much much colder. No wind chill to speak of (besides your own speed of course) but the humidity probably played a big role in this.

Your skin is basically one large heat exchanger. Wind on the skin increases the rate of evaporative cooling, which takes energy, known as windchill, as the boundary layer of air against the skin gets replaced more frequently . This is why  a windproof works so well at keeping you warmer, as it slows that form of energy loss, by helping create a still layer iof air against the skin.   

Water is a a great conductor of heat. So if you have it on the skin either sweat or rain, you have another source of heat loss.  So that's what your base layers job is, to wick the water away from the skin, so it can move out into the other layers escape.

Main job of the rest of the layers is to trap air. Air is a fantastic insulator, provided it not getting replaced all the time (see windchill). This is why Down in a windproof shell is so great as it traps so much air around the body.

Modern waterproof shells struggle with aerobic exercise like bike riding. So often the sweat that is trying to escape condenses on the cold outer shell, then soaks back through the layers over time. The water displaces air, and eventually soaks back to the skin. Insulation value of the layers plummets and the skin cools from conduction heat loss as weel. 

Materials like Primaloft works in the wet by maintaining loft and retaining the ability to trap air. It is the same with hydrophobic down (down treated to repel water).

So staying warm in wet and windy conditions is tough.  Getting water away from the skin, then out through the layers, wind proofing to trap layers of air (and slow water ingress) are key.   A windproof can work better than a waterproif shell if you are working hard aerobically, aka hills or headwinds. If you are working only moderately hard than a traditional shell may work better.

I last wore a waterproof shell on the bike during LEL 13. Since then I have worn a wibdproof as my outer in all weathers.  But having had a cold wet Easter Arrow I have just bought a new Paramo Jacket. I had one in the 90's and really rated it, but found it too warm. Fast forward 25 years and they have lighter versions for aerobic activity, and pit zips you can adjust on the move to regulate temperature to stop overheating (and thus sweat which will cool you later). 

Always worth reviewing your set up after a cold wet ride to see if it still works for you, under what conditions it fails to work,  and if so why. Then look at what replacement layer(s) may work in those conditions.

Last thought I will leave you with is Vapour Barrier Clothing. It turns layers on its head and is generally used in very cold environments (-25C and bellow type cold)  to stay warm in very thin clothing. Have a read here https://sectionhiker.com/vapor_barrier_clothing/ but basically if you are chilled putting your waterproof against the skin, and the other layers outside may, counter intuitively, be warmer. It worked with neoprene waterproofs and with PU waterproofs in the 80's in winter. Plastic bags next to skin on feet or hands is also a good example. You want the bag under the sock / glove, not over.

A younger life spent climbing mountains in the Greater Ranges...

Ben T

  • What you saying, then?
Re: Yr Elenydd 2018 edition
« Reply #29 on: April 10, 2018, 08:44:55 am »
Rapha rain jacket 0 Wales 3 ☔️🙄 By the 2nd control I was that cold I struggled to open a bag of crisps.
Would have been in real trouble if had punctured at that stage

I was in the same situation. I had to get another rider to undo my helmet strap and the zips on my jacket. I even struggled to get a fork into some carrot cake and was hardly able to pick up my coffee! There is no way on earth that I could have fixed a puncture at that point!

The only time I've been cold enough not to be able to undo my helmet was on mont ventoux... tip - the cafe "at the top" IS far enough down the other side for it to be worth donning gear at the actual top... :)
Unless you put on overalls, boots, and a helmet with a high tech pre fitted lamp - and you dig coal - nope, you don't know me.

GrahamG

  • Babies bugger bicycling
Re: Yr Elenydd 2018 edition
« Reply #30 on: April 10, 2018, 05:44:35 pm »
Well the memories of torrential rain and single digit temperatures have softened enough for me to enter the Irish Mail today. Looking forward to riding something new to me in Wales and the Upton Magna catering.
Brummie in exile (may it forever be so)

whosatthewheel

Re: Yr Elenydd 2018 edition
« Reply #31 on: April 10, 2018, 06:35:15 pm »
Well the memories of torrential rain and single digit temperatures have softened enough for me to enter the Irish Mail today. Looking forward to riding something new to me in Wales and the Upton Magna catering.

I am doing the shorter 300 km one... I figured out the Anglesey part not to be of particular interest. The course through Snowdonia is as good as it gets anywhere

Re: Yr Elenydd 2018 edition
« Reply #32 on: April 10, 2018, 06:53:19 pm »
Really enjoyed this ride. Cheers to all involved.

Doo :)
I dunno why anybody's doing this!

GrahamG

  • Babies bugger bicycling
Re: Yr Elenydd 2018 edition
« Reply #33 on: April 11, 2018, 11:32:01 am »
Well the memories of torrential rain and single digit temperatures have softened enough for me to enter the Irish Mail today. Looking forward to riding something new to me in Wales and the Upton Magna catering.

I am doing the shorter 300 km one... I figured out the Anglesey part not to be of particular interest. The course through Snowdonia is as good as it gets anywhere

I had the same thought (no info controls either) and quite agree, but figured I've never done Anglesey and the A5 return might be more pleasant traffic-wise later on in the day rather than in the afternoon. Plus it's another step closer to my first SR in five years if I manage to wangle a 600 past the family.
Brummie in exile (may it forever be so)

Re: Yr Elenydd 2018 edition
« Reply #34 on: April 11, 2018, 10:47:09 pm »
I am doing the shorter 300 km one... I figured out the Anglesey part not to be of particular interest. The course through Snowdonia is as good as it gets anywhere

Ynys Môn does not have Snowdonia's drama and elevation but it has a rugged charm and, of course, one is never far from the sea :). There are fine panoramic views across to the mountains of Snowdonia and it's considerably drier and sunnier than the adjacent mainland.

whosatthewheel

Re: Yr Elenydd 2018 edition
« Reply #35 on: April 12, 2018, 12:09:35 pm »
I am doing the shorter 300 km one... I figured out the Anglesey part not to be of particular interest. The course through Snowdonia is as good as it gets anywhere

Ynys Môn does not have Snowdonia's drama and elevation but it has a rugged charm and, of course, one is never far from the sea :). There are fine panoramic views across to the mountains of Snowdonia and it's considerably drier and sunnier than the adjacent mainland.

Probably... my issue was along the lines of not being able to fit "yet another" 2 day event... whereas I can be home before midnight in the case of a 300. With this in mind I asked John if an Irish Mail orphan of the Anglesey appendix did make any sense for him as an extra offer... so he agreed to this option too...  ;D

mattc

  • n.b. have grown beard since photo taken
    • Didcot Audaxes
Re: Yr Elenydd 2018 edition
« Reply #36 on: April 12, 2018, 12:36:55 pm »
I am doing the shorter 300 km one... I figured out the Anglesey part not to be of particular interest. The course through Snowdonia is as good as it gets anywhere

Ynys Môn does not have Snowdonia's drama and elevation but it has a rugged charm and, of course, one is never far from the sea :). There are fine panoramic views across to the mountains of Snowdonia and it's considerably drier and sunnier than the adjacent mainland.

Probably... my issue was along the lines of not being able to fit "yet another" 2 day event... whereas I can be home before midnight in the case of a 300.
Perhaps say what you actually mean next time?
Has never ridden RAAM
---------
No.11  Because of the great host of those who dislike the least appearance of "swank " when they travel the roads and lanes. - From Kuklos' 39 Articles

whosatthewheel

Re: Yr Elenydd 2018 edition
« Reply #37 on: April 12, 2018, 12:45:33 pm »
Perhaps say what you actually mean next time?

A combination of the two, really... if I thought the Anglesey stretch was unmissable, I would have probably ditched another 2 day event to do the Irish Mail 400 instead.

The 300 (Snowdon and Lakes) is very similar to the Pengwern Pedal 300... on that occasion I did the shorter 200 version (Beyond Shropshire) and subsequently regretted not doing the all thing and missing out on some stunning bits of Snowdonia.

Re: Yr Elenydd 2018 edition
« Reply #38 on: April 12, 2018, 03:50:04 pm »
The 300 (Snowdon and Lakes) is very similar to the Pengwern Pedal 300...

Similar in length maybe. They are very different routes in my experience!  :)

whosatthewheel

Re: Yr Elenydd 2018 edition
« Reply #39 on: April 12, 2018, 04:25:44 pm »
The 300 (Snowdon and Lakes) is very similar to the Pengwern Pedal 300...

Similar in length maybe. They are very different routes in my experience!  :)

Pretty sure we met at Lake Vyrnwy last September...
The Pengwern pedal looks marginally harder... certainly the first part in common with the 200 and up to the Bwlch y Groes was harder

Re: Yr Elenydd 2018 edition
« Reply #40 on: April 12, 2018, 04:41:35 pm »
The 300 (Snowdon and Lakes) is very similar to the Pengwern Pedal 300...

Similar in length maybe. They are very different routes in my experience!  :)

Pretty sure we met at Lake Vyrnwy last September...
The Pengwern pedal looks marginally harder... certainly the first part in common with the 200 and up to the Bwlch y Groes was harder

Not sure, possibly we did. Certainly the part from Lake Vyrnwy to Maentwrog looks to be the same as the Pengwern Pedal but apart from that... The return from Bangor seems to have more in common with the Irish Mail. I've ridden the permanent versions of the Irish Mail and the Snowdon, Lleyn and Lakes and they are both great rides. Tempted to enter one or other of these calendar versions...we'll see.

whosatthewheel

Re: Yr Elenydd 2018 edition
« Reply #41 on: April 12, 2018, 05:04:09 pm »
According to Strava we did meet... you were with Shaun... I think we met at Lake Vyrnwy... can't remember what I was wearing, was on a black Dolan

https://www.strava.com/activities/1186972278

BTW that is not my real name, just one I have used for many years on social media to avoid catching the Zuckerberg syndrome  ;D

Re: Yr Elenydd 2018 edition
« Reply #42 on: April 12, 2018, 06:02:06 pm »
According to Strava we did meet... you were with Shaun... I think we met at Lake Vyrnwy... can't remember what I was wearing, was on a black Dolan

https://www.strava.com/activities/1186972278

BTW that is not my real name, just one I have used for many years on social media to avoid catching the Zuckerberg syndrome  ;D

Ah, right. Well that’s settled then. The Pengwern Pedal showed it’s teeth after Vyrnwy. The Trawsfynydd mountain road is easily as ‘scenic’ as the Tregaron mountain road!  :P

whosatthewheel

Re: Yr Elenydd 2018 edition
« Reply #43 on: April 13, 2018, 06:25:06 am »
According to Strava we did meet... you were with Shaun... I think we met at Lake Vyrnwy... can't remember what I was wearing, was on a black Dolan

https://www.strava.com/activities/1186972278

BTW that is not my real name, just one I have used for many years on social media to avoid catching the Zuckerberg syndrome  ;D

Ah, right. Well that’s settled then. The Pengwern Pedal showed it’s teeth after Vyrnwy. The Trawsfynydd mountain road is easily as ‘scenic’ as the Tregaron mountain road!  :P

Being blessed with gears and lots of them I don't mind long climbs at all... even steep ones. What I find very taxing are those endless miles of up and down on tiny lanes. The road (would you believe even before the junction it is actually a B road?) leading to lake Vyrnwy was an example!

Re: Yr Elenydd 2018 edition
« Reply #44 on: April 13, 2018, 08:53:23 pm »
A combination of the two, really... if I thought the Anglesey stretch was unmissable, I would have probably ditched another 2 day event to do the Irish Mail 400 instead.

Fairy nuff. I would recommend riding on Anglesey if you get the opportunity.

mattc

  • n.b. have grown beard since photo taken
    • Didcot Audaxes
Re: Yr Elenydd 2018 edition
« Reply #45 on: April 14, 2018, 03:13:30 pm »

 I would recommend riding on Anglesey if you get the opportunity.
Despite many 100s of kms ridden - and most counties ticked off - I feel like I won't have properly got to know Wales until I "do" Anglesey - preferably on  bike.

(Crossing the lovely Menai bridge not withstanding.  Also,  my parents took me to Wylfa powerstation as a small child - that was great, but I don't really count it.)
Has never ridden RAAM
---------
No.11  Because of the great host of those who dislike the least appearance of "swank " when they travel the roads and lanes. - From Kuklos' 39 Articles

whosatthewheel

Re: Yr Elenydd 2018 edition
« Reply #46 on: April 14, 2018, 03:23:26 pm »
I did ride to Beaumaris castle and I did drive around a bit... it is certainly nice... in my opinion (and it is MY opinion) not a stunning place to ride... but I like mountains and passes and dramatic views, rather than mellow rolling countryside... horses for courses I guess

simonp

  • Omnomnomnipotent.
Re: Yr Elenydd 2018 edition
« Reply #47 on: April 14, 2018, 07:16:39 pm »

 I would recommend riding on Anglesey if you get the opportunity.
Despite many 100s of kms ridden - and most counties ticked off - I feel like I won't have properly got to know Wales until I "do" Anglesey - preferably on  bike.

(Crossing the lovely Menai bridge not withstanding.  Also,  my parents took me to Wylfa powerstation as a small child - that was great, but I don't really count it.)

Did I miss something?  My memory is “flat and windy” and this was an overly abundant resource when I lived in Cambridge.




Re: Yr Elenydd 2018 edition
« Reply #48 on: April 17, 2018, 11:13:30 am »
2017 Elenith was one of my absolute favourite days on a bike. 2018 version was undoubtedly my worst.

Set off near the front under clear skies but it wasn't long before the heavens opened and the rain became quite heavy.  About 20km in I started to notice that my eyesight was becoming blurred, not too much but definitely noticeable. As we went through the Shropshire Hills my eyesight became steadily worse and I started to feel some discomfort. Eventually I had to ask my friend to slow down as my diminishing eyesight was making fast riding dangerous. By the time we reached Shobdon Airfield we had slowed to a crawl and I couldn't see much beyond the blinking red light in front of me.

Once off the bike it was clear there was something not at all right with my eyes. Even out of the rain my eyesight was very blurred and the discomfort was getting worse. I assumed I had some dirt of grit in my eye and tried to wash and tried to wash it out. This made them significantly worse, the pain increased dramatically and my eyes closed altogether, rendering my sightless.

The first aid lady at the airfield (whose name I'm ashamed to say I've completely forgotten) tried to wash out my eyes as best she could and eventually I was taken to Hereford County Hospital Eye Casualty Unit and diagnosed with severe abrasions on both of my cornea. Three days of agonising pain and not being able to open my eyes followed. Only today can I look at a screen long enough to type this out.

I'm still not 100% sure what happened, I must have ridden in heavy rain dozens of times with no effect, but my guess is that the bluriness was caused by the amount of rainwater flushing away my "eye juices" (I'm no biologist !!) and drying them out. At the same time, riding down country lanes has caused some small particles of dirt/mud/grit/otherstuff to build up in my eye. When I ried to wash my eyes at Shobdon I suspect I've dislodged the dirt in my eye and caused the abrasions.

I stopped wearing eye protection a while ago now, I'm not really sure why I just got out of the habit. It's fair to say it's a habit I'll definitely get back into !!

Re: Yr Elenydd 2018 edition
« Reply #49 on: January 09, 2019, 09:20:37 am »
Will this be running this year as nothing on the calendar that I can see ?