Author Topic: London-Wales-London  (Read 41322 times)

Re: London-Wales-London
« Reply #325 on: September 25, 2018, 01:48:59 pm »
Have fun.

Here's a reminder of the LWL controls

https://londonwaleslondon.com/route/

Re: London-Wales-London
« Reply #326 on: October 01, 2018, 08:50:59 am »
Well I did it at the weekend.  The website says 'there are a few notable climbs' - that is for sure!  The climb up to the Cotswold monument was off the scale for me and I have no shame in doing the walk of shame (especially seeing as it was 3am, barely above freezing and I was bloody tired!) The 12 per cent gradient of Buckham Hill was also certainly not one for the faint hearted either (there were a few more but those two definitely stuck out).

Cycling through the night from midnight until 6am was cold, and often scary with not a soul in sight and the wooded lanes and barren Cotswold landscape the only things keeping you company but I'm glad I did it.  It was by far the toughest thing I'd ever done.

Lessons learnt:

1. Cut down on the faff
2. Cut down on the stops
3. Speed up!
4. Lose weight off the bike (somehow)
5. Dont sleep

https://www.strava.com/activities/1873598670

Roll on next May!


Phil W

Re: London-Wales-London
« Reply #327 on: October 01, 2018, 09:05:17 am »
You are not wrong about the cold. I think you were out over similar time to me. I set off on my DIY 400 on Friday night.  In the hollows it dipped down to 3c and I was glad of hills.  Only stopped a couple of times in the night to windmill the arms to get circulation back in the hands. My insulated gloves would have been more appropriate.  The coming sunrise took forever from that first light on the horizon.

Re: London-Wales-London
« Reply #328 on: March 07, 2019, 11:47:09 am »
Hi all, doing this for the first time this year.  Done lots of long distance touring/camping, and 200k rides.  As this is my first proper audax, got a couple of newbie questions.

Would I look like a complete prat with my small 15l commuting rucksack to carry my stuff, rather than a saddle bag?

I use one bike all year round and train all winter, this year has finally finished off my training wheels.  Would I look a even bigger moron turning up with carbon wheels?

Basically, I don't want to stand out and look like a bell-end !  :-[  :)

Thanks

bludger

  • Randonneur and bargain hunter
Re: London-Wales-London
« Reply #329 on: March 07, 2019, 12:13:12 pm »
I definitely wouldn't carry a rucksack from a comfort standpoint but you can use any bike you want. Any huffing and puffing about carbon fiber is a load of hokum. I did my first Audax on a £320 halfrauds aluminum Claris road bike, no one cares.

As an alternative you can get a giant saddlebag off of planet X for a couple of quid which will allow room for spare layers, food etc while keeping the load off your back. They're doing a frame bag right now for £10.
YACF touring/audax bargain basement:
https://bit.ly/2Xg8pRD


Re: London-Wales-London
« Reply #330 on: March 07, 2019, 12:58:23 pm »
Hi all, doing this for the first time this year.  Done lots of long distance touring/camping, and 200k rides.  As this is my first proper audax, got a couple of newbie questions.

Would I look like a complete prat with my small 15l commuting rucksack to carry my stuff, rather than a saddle bag?

I use one bike all year round and train all winter, this year has finally finished off my training wheels.  Would I look a even bigger moron turning up with carbon wheels?

Basically, I don't want to stand out and look like a bell-end !  :-[  :)

Thanks

Who cares what you look like? For the rucksack my personal concern would be limited to comfort followed by ease of access, two reasons I'd find a cheap alternative.

As to wheels my only concern, from experience, would be can I continue a ride after a spoke failure? Now if your carbon wheels have a low spoke count that would concern me, although it can be offset with a kevlar spoke.

One thing to consider, make sure whatever bag you use can easily hold everything, last year it was a pain to find at the first control where the weather has warmed from ~4'C to a lovely day that my bag wasn't really big enough for the very warm hours  :facepalm: I wasn't over-packed, finishing the ride in all my layers.

Re: London-Wales-London
« Reply #331 on: March 07, 2019, 01:24:22 pm »

Would I look like a complete prat with my small 15l commuting rucksack to carry my stuff, rather than a saddle bag?


The thing to think about is the stresses that a weight in your back will put through your lower back over 20 hours or so. I would strongly recommend looking at another option - I use a Carradice seat bag.

And don't forget the whole point of Audax is that no one cares how you look ... you'll see all sorts from the LeCol/Rapha fashionistas to at least one bloke who made his own bike out of bits of old garden decking

Re: London-Wales-London
« Reply #332 on: March 07, 2019, 01:30:01 pm »
I’ve done some long rides where, if my neck wasn’t aching, it was my back (and no, the saddle isn’t too high or bars too low), and emptying my jersey pockets of phone and coin filled wallet would make all the difference.
Bikes are for riding, not cleaning!

Re: London-Wales-London
« Reply #333 on: March 07, 2019, 02:41:43 pm »

Would I look like a complete prat with my small 15l commuting rucksack to carry my stuff, rather than a saddle bag?


The thing to think about is the stresses that a weight in your back will put through your lower back over 20 hours or so. I would strongly recommend looking at another option - I use a Carradice seat bag.

And don't forget the whole point of Audax is that no one cares how you look ... you'll see all sorts from the LeCol/Rapha fashionistas to at least one bloke who made his own bike out of bits of old garden decking

Plus the potential for more things to rub (straps quickly irritate me) and back sweat which can affect your temperature regulation.

No one will care what you look like so do your testing and decide what works best for you.

Re: London-Wales-London
« Reply #334 on: March 07, 2019, 05:35:45 pm »
Thanks all, appreciate the advice  :thumbsup:

London-Wales-London
« Reply #335 on: March 07, 2019, 09:46:37 pm »
One very strong tip is even if a warm night after sweating all day you may get cold so make sure you do carry extra layers etc for the night section and almost like a winter day ride. So bear that in mind when selecting but as others said forget the backpack ...

Re: London-Wales-London
« Reply #336 on: March 07, 2019, 09:50:16 pm »
Okay cheers Liam. 

Undecided as to whether to go down A4 or go through Henley on Friday!  Might just see how it's going on the day :)

I went through Henley at chucking out time so got a few comments but know someone who did the A4 the year before and imho much safer on quieter slower roads

mmmmartin

  • BPB 1/1: PBP 0/1
    • FNRttC
Re: London-Wales-London
« Reply #337 on: March 07, 2019, 10:45:56 pm »
About a thousand years ago I did this ride: from the control at the motorway services near Newbury it's downhill to Newbury and the A4 is flat, straight, and - more importantly -lit. There was also a 24 hour garage somewhere on it.
YMMY.
Besides, it wouldn't be audacious if success were guaranteed.

Re: London-Wales-London
« Reply #338 on: March 08, 2019, 07:50:26 am »
The draft route for 2019 is here https://ridewithgps.com/routes/29312454

Although the route is advisory, it's best to check against the current controls.


Re: London-Wales-London
« Reply #339 on: March 08, 2019, 04:49:30 pm »
About a thousand years ago I did this ride: from the control at the motorway services near Newbury it's downhill to Newbury and the A4 is flat, straight, and - more importantly -lit. There was also a 24 hour garage somewhere on it.
YMMY.

[looks at 2019 route]
Ahhh....a person can only reminisce and wax lyrical of the good old days of early hour A4 nivarna......looks like the info control police have been at it again  :)
Garry Broad

Re: London-Wales-London
« Reply #340 on: March 08, 2019, 06:14:48 pm »
Okay cheers Liam. 

Undecided as to whether to go down A4 or go through Henley on Friday!  Might just see how it's going on the day :)

I went through Henley at chucking out time so got a few comments but know someone who did the A4 the year before and imho much safer on quieter slower roads

I rode the a4 on my attempts didn't feel it was dangerous at any stage. Wide straight good surface plenty of room and time for safe overtakes.
Much as I like the roads through the hills in the day. At night in the wet I'm not so sure.
I wonder about the possibility of taking the a4 to sonning before crossing the river to make the henley control. Might be quite a bit further I'd have to check. As I recall the a4 route was very close to the henley route in distance.
   Eddington  81 miles  112 kms

mattc

  • n.b. have grown beard since photo taken
    • Didcot Audaxes
Re: London-Wales-London
« Reply #341 on: March 08, 2019, 07:01:58 pm »
Yup, even if you have to go to Henley, using the A4 as far as you can will probably be quicker (if only cos it's so much flatter)

Bloody dull though - the lanes/B-road route is really nice.

(If I was riding, I'd divert North via Didcot - a pretty route with lots of fast A-road. But I realise not everyone lives in Didcot .... )
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

Re: London-Wales-London
« Reply #342 on: March 08, 2019, 07:14:08 pm »
You can still do some of the A4.
Lambourn to Newbury, A4 to Reading, Play Hatch then Henley.
Slightly longer but much flatter.

London-Wales-London
« Reply #343 on: March 08, 2019, 07:15:58 pm »
You can still do some of the A4.
Lambourn to Newbury, A4 to Reading, Play Hatch then Henley.
Slightly longer but much flatter.

I really never found it that hilly at all on return leg ... once climbed Symonds Yat the rest is really fine

Re: London-Wales-London
« Reply #344 on: March 12, 2019, 08:58:44 am »
You can still do some of the A4.
Lambourn to Newbury, A4 to Reading, Play Hatch then Henley.
Slightly longer but much flatter.

I really never found it that hilly at all on return leg ... once climbed Symonds Yat the rest is really fine
It wasn't the climbing that put me off but fast descending in the dark on twisty wet roads likely to have potholes.
   Eddington  81 miles  112 kms

Re: London-Wales-London
« Reply #345 on: March 12, 2019, 09:05:07 am »
It wasn't the climbing that put me off but fast descending in the dark on twisty wet roads likely to have potholes.

Plans are in place to prevent rain.

Brakes are also advisable and widely available in shops and on line

Re: London-Wales-London
« Reply #346 on: March 12, 2019, 11:07:15 am »
The draft route for 2019 is here

What does the note about Tewkesbury Greggs mean? Do their receipts not have the date / time / name on them?  :o :o

Re: London-Wales-London
« Reply #347 on: March 12, 2019, 11:18:12 am »
The draft route for 2019 is here

What does the note about Tewkesbury Greggs mean? Do their receipts not have the date / time / name on them?  :o :o

Greggs' receipts don't always name the town where issued (shocking I know). I'm told Co op ATMs have the same issue sometimes.

Re: London-Wales-London
« Reply #348 on: March 12, 2019, 11:19:27 am »

Greggs' receipts don't always name the town where issued (shocking I know).

This is truly terrible news

AK

    • Bloggy blog
Re: London-Wales-London
« Reply #349 on: March 12, 2019, 11:21:23 am »

Greggs' receipts don't always name the town where issued (shocking I know).

This is truly terrible news

They did last year, but even if not, I’m more than happy to get in the queue in the name of research.