Author Topic: The Full Fat Festive 500: 511 km of riding in the bleak midwinter  (Read 7868 times)

Re: The Full Fat Festive 500: 511 km of riding in the bleak midwinter
« Reply #25 on: August 16, 2018, 01:08:12 pm »
Very tempting. even though it does mean I'd pretty much be riding to Bristol,back home, back to Bristol, then back home again...

It'd work well with a prevailing SW wind. The wind is usually stronger from 10am to 7pm so the headwind will more likely be lighter than the tailwind.
Route looks sensible too. Road that will mostly be gritted, not fiddly lanes but not big 'orrible roads.
We could ask to start it in Winslow!

What as per https://yacf.co.uk/forum/index.php?topic=84467.msg ? Cambridge looks the more logical start. I'll offer up a pair of championship bar end plugs (what I won) for anyone that does it dressed as Isambard Kingdom Brunel...
“That slope may look insignificant, but it's going to be my destiny" - Fitzcarraldo

Re: The Full Fat Festive 500: 511 km of riding in the bleak midwinter
« Reply #26 on: August 16, 2018, 01:11:32 pm »
That was a lot of fun - thanks to ACB for the challenge. Always good to try something different - my first audax on fixed, my first group DIY and my first dressed as IKB (partially - we'll have to reschedule it for the middle of winter if I'm going to survive wearing that).

*thinks*
“That slope may look insignificant, but it's going to be my destiny" - Fitzcarraldo

citoyen

  • Cat 6 Racer
Re: The Full Fat Festive 500: 511 km of riding in the bleak midwinter
« Reply #27 on: August 16, 2018, 01:22:56 pm »
Start date is my birthday. I think that sounds like a good enough reason to do this.

Not going to make a decision yet but am giving it serious consideration...

Re: The Full Fat Festive 500: 511 km of riding in the bleak midwinter
« Reply #28 on: August 16, 2018, 01:25:13 pm »
[mode:Killjoy]
I think it's irresponsible to put on an event like this. Audax is a hobby, and even with the disclaimers, entrants would be expecting the NHS to pick up the pieces if it all goes tits up. 500km in December is just stupid.
[mode:off]

We've gone back to the 1996 Audax AGM then and that was one response to my riding 600s in winter and was an argument against having the Audax points awards.
It amuses me that years later we have the much coveted RRTY. So I guess all you are quibbling about is the distance of the event?
Yes, it's a hobby. I don;t see what point that tries to make. Is it that we shouldn't push our limits or be audacious?
I used to commute  to work by bike and never got a day off because the weather is bad. I now ride my bike to earn my living (Deliveroo) and the grim weather days pay best. It's just riding a bike on the road, not base jumping. If the weather is beyond the limits of myself or my equipment (I don't have studded tyres for ice) I won't ride. I've booked hotels in advance for a December 1000 and not even turned up at the start because of the risk of ice and lost all my hotel booking money. The audax minimum speed solves a lot of problems of risk. If it's that hazardous, you'll be too slow for the time limit. That applies to sleepiness as well.
One reason I like the idea of this event is that I can d a good winter ride in company for a change. It'll be more fun and it means we can look out for each other, not like when I do solo winter permanents, which is what I'd do if I don;t ride this event.

I'd be more concerned about drunk drivers than weather and that is as much of a problem in summer holiday months.

fboab

  • It's a fecking serious business, riding a bike
Re: The Full Fat Festive 500: 511 km of riding in the bleak midwinter
« Reply #29 on: August 16, 2018, 02:05:45 pm »
So I guess all you are quibbling about is the distance of the event?
I'm quibbling about the encouragement. There will undoubtably be night riding. It gets colder and the weather is more dangerous at night.
Quote
Yes, it's a hobby. I don;t see what point that tries to make. Is it that we shouldn't push our limits or be audacious?
We shouldn't expect other people to look after our foolishness. If you set out doing something reckless (Park Rash in the snow, just as an actual; this happened ferinstance) and something goes tits up, it's society as a whole, the NHS in particular who picks up the pieces. I think it's selfish.
Quote
If the weather is beyond the limits of myself or my equipment (I don't have studded tyres for ice) I won't ride. I've booked hotels in advance for a December 1000 and not even turned up at the start because of the risk of ice and lost all my hotel booking money. The audax minimum speed solves a lot of problems of risk. If it's that hazardous, you'll be too slow for the time limit. That applies to sleepiness as well.
Which is fine for one person to make that choice, but putting on an event and not cancelling because WEATHER (the Snowcovered Dean, for example) is an encouragement for people to take risks which are for their own enjoyment but cost society as a whole.
Quote
One reason I like the idea of this event is that I can d a good winter ride in company for a change. It'll be more fun and it means we can look out for each other, not like when I do solo winter permanents, which is what I'd do if I don;t ride this event.
all of which is fair enough. But what about others who don't have your experience and judgement and go out anyway?
Quote
I'd be more concerned about drunk drivers than weather and that is as much of a problem in summer holiday months.

I've never been hit by a drunk driver but I've assisted riders to ambulances thanks to ice. I've come off (on my way to work, on hobby rides) several times. You can see why I view one as more likely than the other. One is preventable by your own actions- stay off the roads if the weather is unsuitable- the other is not- who knows when the next DD will strike. Winter is a lot more predictable- it's always a possibility, even a probability in December.
TSS is not Total Sex Score, Chris!

Re: The Full Fat Festive 500: 511 km of riding in the bleak midwinter
« Reply #30 on: August 16, 2018, 02:16:44 pm »
Thanks for the motivation now entered  :thumbsup:
Eddington Number 75

fboab

  • It's a fecking serious business, riding a bike
Re: The Full Fat Festive 500: 511 km of riding in the bleak midwinter
« Reply #31 on: August 16, 2018, 03:53:20 pm »
There's risk involved in anything, so I guess what you're saying is that the risk is too great, so can you tell us all what the risk is compared to other hobbies, activities and so on and what exactly the acceptable limit is?

That's the rub, isn't it?

For me, a 500km in the last week of December is too great. 100km would be- if it was snowing in the morning. I don't think the Dean should be banned, but the snowy one should have been cancelled- how would the organisers NOT have been liable if something had happened to the few brave foolhardy souls who set out?
We all (surely) tut at teenagers in trainers heading up mountains in changeable weather forcing the mountain rescue bods to go out after them. People drowning in frozen lakes having gone out after their dogs. Firemen dying because kids lit a campfire which got out hand.

It's all fun and games and macho bravery until someone breaks a pelvis. There's a hefty tally of cyclists who took a chance and broke collarbones and hips, and will we still be OK with this ride on the calendar when someone dies?

Of course that's hyperbole and really really (really) unlikely, but for me, this ride crosses the fine line between audacity and stupidity. A group of mates doing a perm and making a decision on the morning of the ride is not the same as a calendar event under the umbrella of Audax UK.
TSS is not Total Sex Score, Chris!

Re: The Full Fat Festive 500: 511 km of riding in the bleak midwinter
« Reply #32 on: August 16, 2018, 03:58:42 pm »
I wonder if there will be a medal?
If there is it will be by definition rare because:

Very few folk ride 200s in proper winter weather overseas and only a handful ride further. Otherwise, carry on the debate.
It is what it is. It's not what it's not, so it must be what it is.

bludger

  • Randonneur and bargain hunter
Re: The Full Fat Festive 500: 511 km of riding in the bleak midwinter
« Reply #33 on: August 16, 2018, 04:13:20 pm »
I would prefer that this thread is broadly on the topic of the brevet but we're all grown ups here and I'm not your boss. Just don't want interest in the brevet and particularly agreements to chaingang to be distracted by a relevant but ultimately tangential topic if it turns out the weather is fine after all.
YACF touring/audax bargain basement:
https://bit.ly/2Xg8pRD


Re: The Full Fat Festive 500: 511 km of riding in the bleak midwinter
« Reply #34 on: August 16, 2018, 04:23:47 pm »

That's the rub, isn't it?

For me, a 500km in the last week of December is too great. 100km would be- if it was snowing in the morning. I don't think the Dean should be banned, but the snowy one should have been cancelled- how would the organisers NOT have been liable if something had happened to the few brave foolhardy souls who set out?
We all (surely) tut at teenagers in trainers heading up mountains in changeable weather forcing the mountain rescue bods to go out after them. People drowning in frozen lakes having gone out after their dogs. Firemen dying because kids lit a campfire which got out hand.

It's all fun and games and macho bravery until someone breaks a pelvis. There's a hefty tally of cyclists who took a chance and broke collarbones and hips, and will we still be OK with this ride on the calendar when someone dies?

Of course that's hyperbole and really really (really) unlikely, but for me, this ride crosses the fine line between audacity and stupidity. A group of mates doing a perm and making a decision on the morning of the ride is not the same as a calendar event under the umbrella of Audax UK.

Risk isn't the same for each individual. I've walked my bike down the Gospel Pass over ice on the Gospel Pass 100 as a few others confidently and safely just rode over the ice. I'm sure I'd have ended up in A&E if I tried.
Some drown in frozen lakes trying too rescue their pets, meanwhile others go diving into icy lakes just for fun without any problems, just as some go swimming in lakes where if I tried that, I'd not expect to come out if alive, unless I built myself up to be able to do it.
IIRC the Dean had a get out clause, that if anyone ride the following week, brevets were accepted. I think that almost everyone deciding not to ride negates the need for the event being cancelled. Those who did start (and finish) knew what they were up against. The main reason I didn't ride was because if it did get unrideable, it would have been expensive staying in a hotel and been a hassle getting back home. I had to be at work on the Monday and that might have been challenging or very expensive if it got really bad. Otherwise I'd have had a crack just for the fun and would have pulled myself out if it got nasty.
I'd ride an event where a rider has died on a previous event. PBP for starters. I don't do macho bravery. I think that the kind f person who does will come unstuck one way or another anyway.

I think you demonstrate my other point well. It's just too daunting to take on lightly. It doesn't look so bad now, when the weather isn't oppressive and you have some fitness (if you're lucky! I've got to build some up again) but once you lose some fitness, you get a bit slower and start going outside and think, "Bugger me! It's freezing! Sod doing 500k for a game of soldiers!" it starts dawning upon you that deciding whether to do a 500 or not needs consideration. this often makes you an avid weather watcher, just as it does with any significant ride, so you can plan kit etc. (or even whether to ride or not)


I suggest the danger is more imagined than real.

This reminds me of when I stayed in Ambleside YH one Christmas to do some mountain biking. I booked in advance but it snowed so I abandoned my ambitious plan to ride the High Street and just bimbled around a bit on my mountain bike. Still did some off road but ended up walking a lot (and got passed by mountain bikers who were confidently riding over the icy path I was walking along precariously)
A rock climber was also staying and we got chatting. He thought I was very brave mountain biking and didn't think that he was especially brave rock climbing.
It wasn't me who downed a bottle of wine the following night after a scary experience....

Re: The Full Fat Festive 500: 511 km of riding in the bleak midwinter
« Reply #35 on: August 17, 2018, 03:17:35 pm »
I really don't see what the big issue is here. I've entered this event and will make my own decision nearer the time when I actually know what sort of weather I'm in for. The roads used seem to be chosen for the time of year. I don't consider myself selfish, If there's ice, I'll walk. If I have to walk too much I'll be out of time and I'll have to abandon. I rode the Dean this year and the weather turned so bad after Malmesbury that I ended up overnighting at the Days Inn at Membury services and still had to walk the next day because the conditions were so bad. When I first started riding audax (it wasn't very long ago) somebody said to me: 'we don't do these rides because they're easy!'. It annoyed me a little at the time but I've come to understand what he meant. So, as long as the conditions aren't dangerous on the day, I'll have a crack at the Full Fat Festive 500. It won't be easy!

bludger

  • Randonneur and bargain hunter
Re: The Full Fat Festive 500: 511 km of riding in the bleak midwinter
« Reply #36 on: August 17, 2018, 03:53:13 pm »
Thank you admin.

As for myself it looks like the family are trying to collar me into a winter break somewhere far from Bristol - but if I can get away with it you'll see me at the start line 8)
YACF touring/audax bargain basement:
https://bit.ly/2Xg8pRD


vorsprung

  • Opposites Attract
    • Audaxing
Re: The Full Fat Festive 500: 511 km of riding in the bleak midwinter
« Reply #37 on: August 17, 2018, 04:49:12 pm »
The plan is, if I can manage a 600 in October then I will enter

(and try and do another longish ride in November just to keep my knees supple)
Audaxing Blog follow @vorsprungbike on

Re: The Full Fat Festive 500: 511 km of riding in the bleak midwinter
« Reply #38 on: August 17, 2018, 05:20:03 pm »
GP4seasons have a modicum of grip if you are riding on wet roads with the odd patch of icy stuff. They will even grip ok on new snow. Useless once it gets icy and rutted. They are the best all-round tyres I know of for these conditions that are also reasonably quick.

I believe there are other continentals with a similar compound.
<i>Marmite slave</i>

whosatthewheel

Re: The Full Fat Festive 500: 511 km of riding in the bleak midwinter
« Reply #39 on: August 17, 2018, 05:35:08 pm »
GP4seasons have a modicum of grip if you are riding on wet roads with the odd patch of icy stuff. They will even grip ok on new snow.

Nonsense

JonB

  • Granny Ring ... Yes Please!
Re: The Full Fat Festive 500: 511 km of riding in the bleak midwinter
« Reply #40 on: August 17, 2018, 05:39:28 pm »
GP4seasons have a modicum of grip if you are riding on wet roads with the odd patch of icy stuff. They will even grip ok on new snow.

Nonsense

Yep, completely agree.

Re: The Full Fat Festive 500: 511 km of riding in the bleak midwinter
« Reply #41 on: August 17, 2018, 09:45:11 pm »
I see ACB are also running a 300km on 23rd November 2018, from Bristol down to Poole Harbour and back with a 10.00pm start.

As a relative newcomer to Audaxing (started 2014) I'd always assumed that the reason there were never any calendar rides over 200km through the winter was that there was little or no demand for them.

These audaxes, from the little I know about ACB, seem to fit in with the sort of winter DIY's they tend to ride. In that respect, hats-off to ACB for pushing back the boundaries and giving like-minded souls the opportunity to take part.

It'll be interesting to see how many riders there are.

Re: The Full Fat Festive 500: 511 km of riding in the bleak midwinter
« Reply #42 on: August 17, 2018, 10:11:39 pm »
GP4seasons have a modicum of grip if you are riding on wet roads with the odd patch of icy stuff. They will even grip ok on new snow.

Nonsense
That is my experience.
Gained from commuting 25miles over snowy, icy roads. You may not find that the grip is great, however I found them far better than other tyres.
<i>Marmite slave</i>

vorsprung

  • Opposites Attract
    • Audaxing
Re: The Full Fat Festive 500: 511 km of riding in the bleak midwinter
« Reply #43 on: August 18, 2018, 07:29:25 am »
GP4seasons have a modicum of grip if you are riding on wet roads with the odd patch of icy stuff. They will even grip ok on new snow.

Nonsense
That is my experience.
Gained from commuting 25miles over snowy, icy roads. You may not find that the grip is great, however I found them far better than other tyres.

They are grippy tyres (on normal roads)  but the only tyres that grip effectively on ice are ones with studs
Also, GP4 are slick and tyres with tread work better on fresh snow
Audaxing Blog follow @vorsprungbike on

whosatthewheel

Re: The Full Fat Festive 500: 511 km of riding in the bleak midwinter
« Reply #44 on: August 18, 2018, 07:44:11 am »
GP4seasons have a modicum of grip if you are riding on wet roads with the odd patch of icy stuff. They will even grip ok on new snow.

Nonsense
That is my experience.
Gained from commuting 25miles over snowy, icy roads. You may not find that the grip is great, however I found them far better than other tyres.

You see, I have to challenge your statement for the simple reason that it is damaging.

A guy in December will use Google to search "tyres for snow and ice" and will come across a thread on YACF where you claim that Conti GP 4 Seasons work well on ice patches as well as fresh snow. He will then buy them, sure in the knowledge that the internet is always right. He will inevitably end up in A&E...
At least if I suggest that it is "nonsense", he will think twice and maybe get something more appropriate

Karla

  • car(e) free
    • Lost Byway - around the world by bike
Re: The Full Fat Festive 500: 511 km of riding in the bleak midwinter
« Reply #45 on: August 18, 2018, 07:57:01 am »
It's a form of natural selection. People who make important decisions based on the opinions of AnonymousUser666 on an open internet forum are fully deserving of their Darwin awards. 

whosatthewheel

Re: The Full Fat Festive 500: 511 km of riding in the bleak midwinter
« Reply #46 on: August 18, 2018, 08:18:41 am »
It's a form of natural selection. People who make important decisions based on the opinions of AnonymousUser666 on an open internet forum are fully deserving of their Darwin awards.

So you've never followed advice you read on the web, I take?

Re: The Full Fat Festive 500: 511 km of riding in the bleak midwinter
« Reply #47 on: August 18, 2018, 11:15:06 am »
As a relative newcomer to Audaxing (started 2014) I'd always assumed that the reason there were never any calendar rides over 200km through the winter was that there was little or no demand for them.

Not sure why you say there aren't any 200km rides through the winter. There are always 200km rides over winter.

http://www.aukweb.net/events/?From=01%2F12%2F2018&To=2&Dist_min=200
You're only as successful as your last 1200...

whosatthewheel

Re: The Full Fat Festive 500: 511 km of riding in the bleak midwinter
« Reply #48 on: August 18, 2018, 11:32:49 am »
As a relative newcomer to Audaxing (started 2014) I'd always assumed that the reason there were never any calendar rides over 200km through the winter was that there was little or no demand for them.

Not sure why you say there aren't any 200km rides through the winter. There are always 200km rides over winter.

http://www.aukweb.net/events/?From=01%2F12%2F2018&To=2&Dist_min=200

... in fairness he said OVER 200...

Re: The Full Fat Festive 500: 511 km of riding in the bleak midwinter
« Reply #49 on: August 18, 2018, 11:39:48 am »
Ah, fair enough. I didn't read it properly  ;D :-[
You're only as successful as your last 1200...