I took Michael up to Ramsbottom the other night for a night ride. I’d planned a easyish route over Holcombe Moor, down Robin Hood’s to Irwell Vale, Edenfield then along a trail I’ve not ridden for years. Dead rocky it is. “He’ll love this” I thought. It was much more severe than I remember, in fact the trail that was already pretty technical, bears all the scars of 2 years of pretty much constant rain. At the bottom we had to stop while Mike put his chain back on. The only problem was that his mech was hanging off…he’d smashed it on a rock. I set about removing it, shortening the chain and bodging a singlespeed setup. It’s about time he was riding a singlespeed anyway, now that he’s old enough to grow a scraggy beard 😉
Anyway, that was fine, if a little bit spinny until we got to Nutall Wood. For some reason (probably poor maintenance), three of the four chainring bolts decide to disintegrate so he’s now got chainrings that move in an elliptical orbit around the bottom bracket.
We walked the last mile (up the Rake) to the car.
Yesterday was Eleanor’s first birthday. I ate too much pizza, too much cake and drank too much red wine. Loads of our friends and family came round so it was a really good day.
The birthday girl enjoyed it too!
I’ve “disposed” of 2 more bikes in the last week. Stripped but not-yet-sold is the Patriot. And sold but not-yet-stripped is the Prince Albert. I’m really sad to see them go but they’ve not been ridden often enough and the PA is pretty bloody heavy anyway. I’ve kept the forks, wheels and all other components…so there may be some options in the New Year. Given the sorry state of Mike’s DMR and the fact that he’s all of a sudden the same height as me, it’s probable that we’ll share a bike (ok, I’ll build something for him and nick it occasionally). At least then I might pay more attention to maintaining the thing.
I’ve been digging out and dusting off the soft shell jacket, the windproof jacket, the fleece skull cap, the waterproof Goretex gloves and the overshoes. It’s cold now, not quite cold enough for the winter boots yet but it’s going to snow this week so perhaps I should empty the dead spiders out of those too. I actually got numb fingers and toes when I went for a ride yesterday. I’d almost forgot how painful that can be.
I managed to fit in a fair bit of riding last week and I’ve got a good plan this week too. Today’s ride started this afternoon after I’d been stuck in the house all day and the weather was looking pretty good, chilly and blue skies – perfect. No sooner had I clipped into the pedals though and the heavens opened and I was soaked by the time I’d got to the end of our road. Bah. I carried on as I really wanted to ride a “new” trail again that I’d found last week. Unusually for round here, it’s quite twisty, very rocky (well, not “rocky” as such, more like large chunks of an old stone building that got bombed by the Luftwaffe or something. Perhaps) and a stark contrast to the regular mud and trees stuff. It’s ace but for now it’s a secret.
It definitely felt wintery last night, which came as a shock after the mild temperatures recently. I’ve still been stuck in the “short rides” rut again last week – I’ve been doing 10 mile loops on the singlespeed whilst being rained on, mostly. I’m easing myself back into it I suppose. This week I’ll get out on the road bike and get the base miles in like I should be doing.
More Three Peaks Cyclocross media…
Simon’s 3 Peaks video is done. You can see it here. The movie features the cream of the UK cyclocross talent; Rob Jebb, Nick Craig…me 😉
There’s also a nice slideshow by Geoff Waugh here
We’ve finally donated the “profits” of Hit the North to charity. We’ve given £1000 to Mediquip4Kids and £420 each to a local preservation charity and a local bat protection group. We did the cardboard cheque/local paper/daft charity mascot thing the other day in the park. Unfortunately the journo didn’t show up but Warren was there to save the day with his camera…
I even got to play with the mascot’s head for a bit 😉
I finally got round to building the Salsa singlespeed using all the bits I took off the Surly before I flogged it. The new one was a tatty mess when I got it, so after some new paint it’s as good as new. Bloody chips easily though 😦 Grrrr.
It’s at least a couple of pounds lighter than the Surly and a whole load more fun to ride. Handling is on the quick side, as I found out when I crashed and landed in a bush.
We went to watch the cyclocross race in Blackley earlier. I should have entered really.