Wednesday, 31 August 2011

Bank Holiday Biking

Not much to report for a while - last weekend was very lazy as I just felt very jaded so no real activity of note at all.

After a noise began to emanate from the bottom bracket of my new bike it was time to book it in to the LBS for a check and revert to my old bike. I'd forgotten just how harsh it is to ride, it clatters over bumps rather than glides. Got my bike back on Thursday - it was a slightly loose cup on the bottom bracket. Also got a lecture about looking after it! :-(

With nothing really planned for the Bank Holiday weekend, Saturday saw Cath heading off for some mountain biking around Bingley so with the forecast rain not appearing I headed off for a quick spin up to Rylstone, Airton, Otterburn, Gargrave and back. I have to say that the road leading to Rylestone is in pretty poor shape and I just don't seem able to keep a good pace on that sort of surface. Got home in 1hr47 so not too bad.

Sunday I'd been invited on a ride with Andy and Andrew Herbert, just a mere 65 miles. We set off from Gargrave and immediately were heading in to a strong wind. At Airton we headed up over the fell road to Settle, some big showers were passing over the next part of our route but we stayed dry if a little cool. We'd planned a tea stop at Slaidburn and just got caught by a shower as we pulled up to the tea room - with another shower just after Slaidburn this was the only wet weather we had on the ride. The bridge out of Slaidburn was being repaired but there was a footbridge to let us past.

The climb up to The Cross o Greet is one of the main climbs of the day and the wind was again full in our face and made even the few flat sections hard work. It wasn't any easier on the descent as it was now a full on gale blowing from the side which made bike handling a little tricky. Fortunately things eased once we dropped off the moor and headed to Keasden. Then it was uphill again on a road I'd never been on before as we headed over to Gisburn Forest. This time the wind was from our side but it didn't make the climb any easier. Again the descent was interesting with the side wind but we were soon in the forest and heading to Bolton by Bowland for our second food stop.

The last section was known territory back through Halton West, no loose heifers this time, and Bank Newton to Gargrave. The two Andrews were finishing here but I had one more climb to get home, finally reached with 117Km and 5hrs30 on the clock. Rather tiring!

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