Author Topic: Making Hay  (Read 2094 times)

Making Hay
« on: March 30, 2008, 02:01:27 pm »
Andy and I did "Making Hay" 200 km on the tandem yesterday.  It was very much a tale of 2 halves.

First off, the last 2 rides I have done have ending in me packing.  An reasonably fast attempt at the Cheltenham Flyer 3 weeks ago resulted in a partial ligament tear at 150 km, which forced a bail.  After 2 weeks rest we attempted a York arrow from Cardiff last week.  Suffice to say, for various reasons, we bailed on that too.  So this ride became a little bit of trying to get back on the horse for a finish.

The ride out to Hay-on-Wye was really quite pleasant.  We had some navigational issues in Newport which put us at the back of the field, but we made up time at the first control in Usk at 40 km.  The ride continued through the Black Mountains up to Cwmdu, where we managed to arrive suitably early in the field to have 'quick' service (in relative terms).  We pootled further up the climb and had a fast descent to Talgarth (76 km/h).  It started to rain, but only a little bit.  We reached Hay-on-Wye (97 km) before midday, in a very respectable time of 4h 45 min.  'Ah ha,' thought I, 'we might make it round in just over 10 hours.'  Stupid, stupid, stupid.

As we turned in Hay, we turned into a headwind.  It then started to really rain.  Not good.  The next 50 km section turned into a slog into the wind, seemingly mostly uphill.  After about 50 minutes, we were completely soaked.  I could feel the water sloshing about in my SealSkinz socks.  There we several sets of dodgy roadworks here, so I had a slightly uncomfortable ride on the back of the tandem.  We eventually crawled into Mitchell Troy (near Monmouth) at 2.45pm.  All the cyclists already there looked as we felt, some of the ones arriving after us looked a little worse.

Andy & I took the decision to deviate slightly from the route back to Newport via Usk, rather than risk the twisty lanes in the wet.  I actually found this section better than the last, but still very very wet and very windy.  We finally arrived back to Tongwynlais in a total of 12 hours, under 5 for the first half, over 7 for the second.  No one at the finish reported an easy ride, but I was pleased that I had finished, albeit with some slight pain in the knees.

Jasmine

border-rider

Re: Making Hay
« Reply #1 on: March 30, 2008, 04:04:19 pm »
Well done

A nice ride that (on a good day)

The lanes route back is lovely, but I can fully understand your wish to avoid it yesterday.  That descent to Talgarth (featured on the BCM 600 of course) must have been fun on the tandem.   

Re: Making Hay
« Reply #2 on: March 30, 2008, 05:23:49 pm »
Yes, I remember this ride from last year, when it was a bit later in the year.  A really good ride in the sunshine.

The descent to Talgarth was really quite good, but there is now a bypass there which the routesheet made no mention of (ho hum).

I also left my gloves at the finish, but John Hayes (the organiser this year) has kindly picked them up for me.  Hurrah!

Lonewolff

Re: Making Hay
« Reply #3 on: March 30, 2008, 05:26:31 pm »
Indeed a ride of 2 halves, was a lovely sunny fun ride out to hay then a long, hard, wet and cold ride back to Cardiff.

After Monmouth I thought I would have to pack after the hub gear on the trike decided it was a good time to get stuck in the middle gear, luckily I managed to fix it and continue the slog back home.

border-rider

Re: Making Hay
« Reply #4 on: March 30, 2008, 05:37:03 pm »
The descent to Talgarth was really quite good, but there is now a bypass there which the routesheet made no mention of (ho hum).

That caused fun on the BCM600 for those (of us) running on autopilot - the control had "moved" :)

border-rider

Re: Making Hay
« Reply #5 on: March 30, 2008, 05:37:45 pm »
after the hub gear on the trike decided it was a good time to get stuck in the middle gear,

You have a hub-geared trike ? I'm intrigued

Lonewolff

Re: Making Hay
« Reply #6 on: March 30, 2008, 05:52:49 pm »
after the hub gear on the trike decided it was a good time to get stuck in the middle gear,

You have a hub-geared trike ? I'm intrigued

'tis of the recumbent variety (see pic on members bikes thread).