Friday, 16 May 2014


I seem to have dropped my mileage somewhat over the last month. This is partly due to the weather but also because my weekend rides have been mountain biking which tend to be shorter in distance if not time. I have been commuting to work though which is 13 miles each way, quite easy to build up some base mileage.

However last week added another reason. I was riding home from work along the canal when an unlatched gate swung in to my path. I was only a bike length or so away from the gate and had no chance to stop and hit it end on. The bike impaled itself on the gate whilst I took an early bath. I remember thinking either just before or as I was entering the water "It's not very deep!". The bottom of the canal had a few rocks so I got a few bruises but since I hadn't made contact with the tow path surface I'd no gravel rash.

When I got out of the canal my bike was still entangled in the gate. The handlebars were crumpled on the left side and the rear brake lever was at a funny angle. A quick test and the rear wheel didn't move so I loosened the back brake off and tried again, still no movement. More loosening and still the bike wouldn't roll, looking round somehow I'd missed the rather buckled front wheel! There was no way it was rideable.

It was only when ringing Cath that I noticed blood dripping (I wonder if iPhones have a blood sensor as well as a moisture sensor?), I'd managed to bash my chin on the rocks in the canal. It's the nature of things like this that a lot of the niggles take time to appear, especially when you are older, and some of the sprains are still making themselves felt several days later.

The initial pain points are getting better (chin excepted) and the bike is at the doctor's - fortunately I've a spare front wheel for this bike but I'll need to rebuild the one that took the impact, hopefully the frame hasn't been damaged and it's just the handlebars that need replacing.

Was speed a factor? In this instance, no, I checked my GPS trace on Strava (useful for something other than willy waving for once) and at the point of impact I was doing 20Kmh (12mph) which is hardly speeding. I'd just slowed down to pass a pedestrian, who incidentally completely ignored me, not even asking if I was OK.

Hopefully my bike will be back in the next day or two and I'll get back commuting. Got a Munro compleation weekend coming up - not me I hasten to add, I've got 230 to go.

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