Saturday just had to be a day off the bike – for the simple reason that I’d ridden 5 days on the bounce. Annoyingly it coincided with what was probably the best weather conditions of the week… Seemed a crying shame to waste it, so strapped on my walking boots intending to go for a walk for a hour or so… then I came over all Forrest Gump, and at every point where I could turn back towards home, I sort of carried on. 3 Hours and 8.5 miles later I decided it was a little cold and getting dark, so I really aught to go home and have a brew…
Sunday dawned cold and Icy. So cold that I actually held off setting out for my ride until 10am hoping it’d warm up a bit. If anything, the temperature dropped. As I left the house the Garmin Read 21°c (ambient in the house). For the next mile and a half, the temperature readout dropped like a stone, eventually settling at around -1°c, where it remained for the next hour or so. In order to try and keep on the bike, I decided to ride my usual route in reverse, hoping that the shaded/backroad traffic free bit that is usually the outward leg would have had chance to thaw out a little before I got there. No such luck, everywhere where the road was in shade was still covered in frost. I don’t think I’ve gone so gentle around corners for such a long distance in my life… Probably accounts for the slightly high IF rating of the ride, as I was so slow in the corners I had been pretty much sprinting back out of them to get some semblance of speed back into the ride, and some warmth into my body!. The last 5 miles or so of the ride was probably the easiest, as I picked up the back of a local “clubrun”, was welcomed aboard for a bit of a rest (must have looked rough by then for them to offer) and spent 5 miles dodging the wind and trying to remember not to touch the brakes as I was on something with working disks, and the rest of the lads were riding their winter hacks and rim brakes. Still – it was nice to actually ride in company for a while, and also to realise that I probably could hold my own with that clubrun for the full duration of a ride (the power figures courtesy of the Stages Powermeter for that section are not dissimilar to what I’d done for the rest of the ride, riding solo.
Strava for this ride is here, and if any of the lads from the Calder Clarion who put up with the fat wheelsucker in Black are reading this… thanks for the wheel gents – I was in dire need.
Yep – didn’t get chance to do a writeup on the sunday ride – frankly the lure of a warm pub and a few beers got in the way. Then as I arrived home, I ate a bowl of pasta and fell fast asleep in front of the telly. I’m useless, I really am. It’s not as if it was a particularly hard / long / tough ride either. I cut the distance short as I managed to pick up YET ANOTHER puncture and rip on the bloody useless Schwalbe Duranos. The back tyre is pretty much shredded in under 300km of riding. 3 large holes right the way through the casing plus god knows how many other little tears and cuts that show through to the “breaker band” of blue rubber. Its off now, and been swapped out for a Durano Plus… Strangely the front tyre is completely unscathed – maybe I just got a dodgy one.
And another 3 hours+ of nice solid base distance. Weather was better than I’d expected to be perfectly honest, a bit windy on the homeward leg, but nothing that was either dangerous or which pushed things into a granny-ring grind.
I’m starting to get to grips properly with the Cannondale now I think, actually feeling confident in the slightly different “feel” to the braking from the disks, and of course the extra bit of “heft” to the bike and especially the wheels compared to the Dolan… It’s strange really, 20 years ago, if someone would have said “here’s a bike that weighs 23lb” I’d have been thrilled skinny. At the time, my Raleigh SPD 531SL framed Shimano 600 equipped bike with sprints/tubs weighed in at around 25lb – and was considered quite a light machine – and that’s something with 14 speeds, not 20 and single-pull rim brakes that stopped you… eventually…. in the dry.
Yep, we’ve all passed a lot of water under the bridge…
which brings me to my in-ride photo…
I’ve called it “Pibroch” because it was taken just after me having one… A Pee Break that is…
Anyhoo, there’s a Strava file here for those of you that care, and there’s a pint of Sam Smiths Best Bitter with my name on it at my local, so that’s all for now.
And I cracked it on both counts. Out for 9am, roads a little damp but at least warm enough that it was just dew not black ice. Set off with the serious intention of being out for at least 4 hours – around a hour into the ride I managed to pick up a bit of glass in the back tyre, but nothing too serious – fixable and didn’t put too much of a crimp into my ride – though I did drop the thoughts of the extra distance loop going out via Boothferry Bridge, instead going direct from Snaith up towards Selby. From there it was the usual ride out via Cawood Ryther and Ulleskelf to Towton and back home via Castleford, Altofts and Normanton. At Warmfield I actually thought “no, stuff it, make up the 100km” so ploughed straight on over Pineapple Hill and down actoss the common and up into Walton before doubling back through Crofton and Home.
A quick mug of something warm and sweet, then out to the local Asda, picked up a Chicken for Sunday Dinner and a Bottle of Red to wash it down with – home again – just in time to spend a couple of hours with a good mate who decided to pay a visit.
Big sunday dinner (at around 7pm – so proper dinner, not lunch) and a couple of hours of music followed by bed and a well earned kip.
Yes, I am writing this the next day – so sue me!
Strava for the ride yesterday is here – today’s definitely going to be a rest day.
Don’t get all Excited about getting out for a proper long ride and forget your drinks bottle.
Weather Forecasts of Sunny Dry Cold Mornings are seldom correct.
Sammy Slicks aren’t slick, and kick up lots of spray from the road.
After 2 hours of Salt Spray from the front wheel, you really miss having a Drink with you.
Theres a reason I spent Months getting my road shoes set up properly with orthotics etc. and frankly, I should have swapped to road pedals and shoes for a 3 hour ride, rather than sticking with the SPD’s
Despite all the above, I really, REALLY enjoyed my morning out on the bike…
Strava stuff for it is here, in case anyone’s interested.
Today was a complete clusterfuck from start to finish – decided to chance one last ride on the “fast” bike before mothballing it, hoping for a good long day out – roads covered in ice, not yet gritted so bloody awful, then 25km in I hit what I thought was a bit of ice broken out of a frozen puddle. Wrong, it was glass. Cut a chunk out of the front tyre, latex in inner-tube couldn’t hold it so sprayed all over the place. Ended up with tyre held together with a Quavers packet found in the hedgerow and limping home for a measly 52.5km on what’s now looking like the nicest, sunniest day we’ve had in a fortnight once the streets are finally aired.