Monday, 14 January 2013

My toes are back!

Oooh it was cold on my toes yesterday. I don't mind being cold, in fact I would rather be cold than hot. The caveat there is toes and ears. I hate having cold ears and toes. Luckily I have a rather fetching selection of Buffs, equally lucky is the chiselled granite jawline that allows me to carry them off in all manner of fetching folds.

When I got to Axbridge city centre I was met by a veritable peleton.
For those of you who read this, but aren't au-fait with cycling terminology, peleton is French for gruppo. A large influx of triathletes had swollen the numbers and promised to be interesting. I'm not sure what French or Italian is for a group of triathletes, possibly l'intense or something.

I won't disect the ride too much, but it was fine. Fast in places, slow in others. Slidey and slippy in places, but bloody cold the whole way round.  I am aware that I am at risk of a Rule 5 breach, so won't mention it again.  The tea-cake was bloody lovely though.

Luckily when I got home my wonderful family had remembered to put the hot water on, but I had a cold shower as I need to Harden The F**k Up!   (I didn't really, the bath was close to boiling!)

Monday, 7 January 2013

The Big Flood

It was a bit of a last minute thing yesterday. But taking full advantage of the weather window, a small peleton of us set off to Sweets. Weird really, but not just one but two Families Floyd.  Off we went, looking for a straightforward and kiddie friendly route for coffee and cake. 

So Wedmore and Heath House before making our easy to Sweets. Let's just say that the amount of water still around was surprising. The road had at least 4" of the wet stuff covering it when we got there. It perked the kids up though, they loved it!

Sitting in Sweets was another damp affair, with the kids drinking hot chocolates as big as their heads.

Back through the flood on the way home, and a sterling effort by the youngsters. Grown up ride next week though. I need to practice for that. So it'll be a turbo week for me this week.

Monday, 24 December 2012

Wet wet wet

Christmas Eve, of course I fancy a little ride to Sweets.  Obviously it was more with hope than expectation that I left home. Alright, so it would be a little moist, but since when did a little moisture ever hurt anyone?  Obviously it has been washing away Christmas more effectively than the Grinch, but pah.....

I am always in a muddle as to what time the ACG actually set of on the rides, maybe I should take more attention of the emails from Jennifer as she suggests.  Even though the time is always in doubt, I can be confident they will always turn up as arranged.  Mad fools! Martyn pitched up at pretty much the same time as me. Jennifer and Le Roleur arrived shortly after, bedecked (well lightly adorned) with some tinsel.

Then the hordes descended, more steam was being generated than a steam rally, and each group appeared to be wetter than the previous group! This did not bode well for the journey home, the prospect of the river now flowing down Mudgely Hill wasn't looking much fun. But we went and did it, and made our way home.  My suggestion of mudguards was met with a suggestion that I could spend longer on the front.  Not sure about that, maybe I'll just get s new coat!

Anyway Christmas in a few minutes, so time for bed.

It's definitely easier blogging on a mobile by the way.

Thursday, 20 December 2012

Chris Who?

The opportunity came a few weeks ago to go the Velodrome in Newport.  Obviously I jumped at the chance, especially as the others on the track were likely to be Scouts or their Dads!

We had an absolute blast, with the young people taking to it why quicker than some of the adults.  Those fixies are trickier than they appear.

The other thing of note in this post is that it is the first one from the freshly downloaded Blogger app.  That will help with some more regular posting.

Wednesday, 19 December 2012

The return of the Cheddar Valley Cyclist!

It's been absolutely ages since my last post.  Months.  Months that have seen periods of inactivity, activity and some really quite random stuff.

Yesterday though, yesterday all my troubles seemed so far away.  I decided enough lone cycling was enough, and that I needed to re-engage with the Cycling Mayor and her well formed band of Axbridge Cyclers (although I do not know how many actually come from Axbridge!)  So, ever so slightly behind time I mounted up and set off to meet them.  I didn't so much meet them, as spend half an hour giving chase!  They passed me going the other way, so by the time the Southern Electric van, the caravan towing Volvo and various other vehicles had gone and let me u-turn, I was very much behind the curve.  I followed them at a distance of about 500m, willing them to look back and realise the I was never going to quite make the gap!  They didn't though, and nor did I.  I'd have to meet them at Sweets!

Have you noticed it's way easier to catch people who have stopped?  Well, it is, and they had, so I caught them.  It was also a pleasant surprise to meet up with Helen at Sweets, she used to teach my son piano. 

The journey home was, as always, completely uneventful until the event of my rear wheel puncturing.  Luckily though I had been watching all the seasons F1 races, so knew exactly how to handle the situation.  All I needed was to change the tube, re-inflate using my Jetflator (or whatever it's called) and be off.  First though I would whip off the tyre using my tyre levers....tyre levers, oh bugger, does anyone have any tyre levers?  All done in record quick sharp time though.

Back to Cheddar and hopefully back into the groove.  Next stop the Christmas Do!

Sunday, 29 July 2012

Hey, I'm back!

How long is considered to be a decent length of time between posts then?  I guess 7 months is too long isn't it?  Go on, you can be honest!

I don't know where the time has gone, just been really busy, and not always riding my bike if I am honest.

By way of catching up on my cycling year what can I say?

-MTBing in the FOD
-MTBing at Ashton Court
-MTBing in Haldon Forest
MTBing in Thetford Forest, all with the MiniCheddarValleyCyclist.  He is beginning to enjoy his mtbing, in fact at times he has to wait.  I have had major mountain bike traumas though!

I did the Dunkery Dash as promised, though to be fair the word 'Dash' may be slightly out of place, maybe 'Dawdle' or 'Daaaarrrggghhhh' would be better.  I have been doing some gentle utility cycling around the place, but not too much hardcore training, which is why I have not made my presence felt with the ACG recently.  I intend to rectify this though, just need to get a few more miles in first.  Failing that, I'll just catch up on the gossip by the Roleur and The Mayor.

Tuesday, 31 January 2012

Oh, it's been a while

But I'm back!

I've even been riding my bike(s).

Ashton Court a couple of times with the Junior Cheddar Valley Cyclist. Still insisting that we stick to made trail centres, just wait, I'll take him to Dartmoor and get him lost, that'll learn him.

Anyway, I was probably conspicuous by my absence at the Annual 2nd Ride in January ACG meet last week, but I haven't been idle..... far from it, I have been inducting (inducing sounds far too obstetric for me) new riders into the world of cycling. JrCVC has a mate who got a road bike for Christmas. His Dad has recently taken ownership of a nice Trek on the C2W scheme, so for the last couple of weeks we have been out and exploring the lanes around Wedmore and Stone Allerton. So, a cast iron reason for missing the ride, maybe.

Here are the JrCVC, his mate and his mates Dad. Apologies for the German national cycling jersey, but for £1.99 from e-bay for a pure wool, Nike cycling jersey it could have been any national flag................... well except Wales obviously, there is limits!

I have entered the Dunkery Dash Audax in March, so will need to grow a beard, get a silly cap and somehow procure a Carradice saddlebag by then, but 104km, self-navigated from North Petherton to Dunkery Beacon and back in the freezing bloody cold sounds like a hoot I'm sure you'll agree. I think I have rashly agreed to do the Merry Monk and another one over the Solstice weekend. ooeerr!

Mileage this year so far then..... actually, I'll have to go and look (I'll edit this later)

Sunday, 8 January 2012

It's Fenny how things always turn out Sweet

Saturday morning, bright, crisp, as my old drill instructor used to shout at us, "It's a fine Grenadier morning, too fine for a bunch of useless bloody tossers like you. Now get in step and get it f'ing together" He was a bit of a git to be honest, typical Guardsman, 6' 2" tall, steep peaked cap and with the type of personality that if he hadn't joined the Army, he could have made a fine career as a cat strangler or going through peoples bins looking for old copies of Warlord or Smash Hits.

But he was right, the morning was a fine one, and we managed to get it together. Well, I say together, we were together in an elasticy type of way. I had a go at the front for a while, but the responsibility was too much and I decided that I couldn't be responsible for any navigational carnage, so I regained my place, and carried on getting covered in mud.

The nice flat route was headed towards Fenny Castle tea rooms. By all accounts a very decent tea-room, with a welcoming host and large portions. Ideal. The ride leader, The Roleur Himself, had done his research. What could possibly go wrong eh? Well, they could advertise themselves as being open, but be closed I suppose, that would rather stuff up the 9 hungry and thirsty cyclists wouldn't it? What made the situation even more troublesome was the desire to not retrace any roads we had already used, this was obviously not going to possible though. Besides we all needed some cake or a sarni.

You can see a pictue of the cake that was consumed on the Mayors blog, 'twas luverly.

There was a bit of a split in the group after Wedmore, so I took the opportunity to sulk off home alone, there seemed little point in going to Axbridge, only to turn around and come home again.

Another very enjoyable ride, with plenty of laughs and some quality banter. I am off to get some hill practice now ready for the 22nd, I can feel a series of increasing disances and gradients looming over the horizon!

Monday, 2 January 2012

One ride down.....

So then, a heady start to the New Year, I had my stuff ready to go out with the ACG, but at the last minute, well about 20 past nine on New Years Eve, I toppled over the edge of the 'Sod it, one more then' rubicon. You know how it goes, one more turns into a bottle of mulled cider and're arsed!

Redemption was needed, so I went and put 45 miles in today. I wouldn't have, but I needed to pick the car up from Nailsea as it wasn't going to drive itself home.

I am back at work tomorrow, so the daily commute begins again, that'll be 24 miles a day, I would say without trying, but I mean without having to go out specially. I am going to try and find a mileage widget for this blog, there must be one somewhere on t'internet, I just need to find one. If anyone knows a decent one, then please forward me the link. I Googled 'Cycle Widget' earlier, and nearly wound up including an ovulation calendar widget on here!

Miles this year 45

Friday, 30 December 2011

Its flat out East

Way flatter than down in the South West anyway. I have been up visiting family (or faamilllyy) as Grant Mitchell would say. My dear old mum lives about 100m away from Thetford Forest, so mountain biking Thetford stylee is literally on the doorstep.

Being flatter though presents the trail builders with problems though, and to make the trails more taxing they have included some bombholes, some tricky narrow tree lined singletrack and The Beast. To be honest, it' snot that Beastly, and over way too soon, but it is a well thought out bit of single track, and it certainly caught out the two in front of me, one of who is probably still trying to get his bike out of the hedge, I pointed out it would have been easier to park further along, but my humour fell on deaf ears. Miserable sod.

The other aspect of the trails which proved taxing was the mud! There was loads and loads of it, grinding, wearing mud, got everywhere, my disc rotors are still crunching now, a whole day, and a good old scrub down later! I guess they will never be the same again, my gloves certainly won't be, they were expensive you know!

Anyway, it was nice to be out on the trails, and nice to be able to cycle for 10 miles, without having to asthmatically wheeze myself up some horrendous bloody hill, only to find a howling gale at the top. It also had the interesting diversion of F16s flying overhead to land at Lakenheath.

Enough of me though! What has been happening down in the Sunny Cheddar Valley? I turn my back for 1 week, and find out that there has been an altercation on one of the local 'Festive' rides! Apparently the Mendip Roleur has been knocking people off. I haven't got all the details straight yet, but my sources say he was Tweeting an up-date on his beta iPhone6, and the automatic cycle positioning radar he has on his bike malfunctioned (a loose carbon self-adjusting diddlyfoo-foo valve clip by all accounts) and this led to him riding full tilt into a complete stranger. Fisticuffs, pistols at dawn all sorts kicking off. I can't wait to catch up with him properly. Honestly, I miss all the fun.