Sunday, 27 February 2011

34 miles today!

No, Clive's not sitting on the loo (though it does look like it).

Me at the start of the long slog up to West Kip.

Clive struggles to find a route through one of the boggy sections.

The picturesque descent from West Kip down to Loganlea reservoir.
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After a 6 am start in a temperature just above freezing we soon got a bit of warmth up with the climb up Castlelaw, Clive who hadn't been out on the bike for 2 weeks was struggling at this stage but hung in and every week now the daylight comes a little bit earlier. The mudfest, as we call a particularly muddy technical section, was done in daylight and guess who cleaned it today, yip, me!!!!! (Much to Baz's disgust though to be fair he did give me the route through some of the tricky bits!). The long climb to West Kip was slightly easier today as conditions were drier than last week so we had time to throw in an additional 4 mile loop back round by Threapmuir reservoir to take us up to the 34 miles at an average speed of 8 mph.

Sunday, 20 February 2011

Another epic morning in the Pentlands!

A week ago this reservoir overflow was 6 inches deep.

A long hard climb in muddy conditions up to West Kip.

The new track we explored today, with the descent to Loganlea reservoir in the distance.

Posted by PicasaBaz came to grief and kindly lay until I took the photo! The wood was treacherous by the way!

Just Baz and me this morning for our jaunt up the Pentlands with our aim today to explore a new track I'd been told about around the north side of West Kip. First of all, after the Castlelaw climb, was the mud fest back down toward Glencorse reservoir and Baz only just failed to clean it today (thank goodness!) with a one foot dab.The climb up to the track round West Kip was brutal, the track up was mud, mud and more mud but apart from a few technical dismounts(?) it was well worth it for the descent back down to Loganlea with the final part being particularly steep and rocky. On the way home we took a detour round a path we hadn't been on before and as Baz took a detour round a wooded section the bike went from under him on the wet greasy wood. Luckily he's not lean and mean at the moment, more of a quite well padded out body shape, and he bounced quite well as he went down so no harm was done! 30.5 miles this morning with the temperature never much above freezing.

Thursday, 17 February 2011

Spills and spills in the mud!

Just when Baz was comparing his riding style to Barcelona's footballing skills it all went wrong! I'd had a couple of dabs on an as yet un-named section of track up the Pentlands, when to the sound of a loud yell Baz disappeared into the mud for a full body plant, and he followed this up with three more for good measure! Not his best ride over this section which is really wet and muddy with all the recent rain but very entertaining in the dark to see his lights shining everywhere but down the track. We really must make up a name for this section, "muddy malarkey" being our best effort so far, (not very inspiring I know).
Anyways no injuries were incurred in the fun we had and we managed a very muddy 17.5 miles.

Saturday, 12 February 2011

Mountain bikers are honest people........on the whole.

I managed to drop my cycling glasses at this gate halfway up Castlelaw climb tonight and didn't realise it until about an hour later. We'd passed a couple coming down the track and wondered if they would have either seen them and pocketed  them or maybe even stood on them as they lifted their bikes over the gate. Anyways we did a 15 mile loop and came back to the gate again and there the glasses were, they must have seen them, picked them up and put them on top of the gatepost. Whoever you were, thanks a lot, the glasses weren't particularly expensive but the fact that you left them on the post for me to find restored my shaky belief in human nature. 28 miles tonight to take my total for the week to 93 off road miles. 
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Sunday, 6 February 2011

Scree slope Sunday!

Baz sets off on the maiden voyage down the scree slope.

Halfway down and sliding..........

Nearly right down and still sliding!

Clive makes it to the bottom as well.
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After a disastrous start to today's ride when I suffered even more punctures and looked as if I'd have to cut short and head home, my rear tyre eventually stayed hard and we managed a 27 miler in cold wet conditions.
The highlight was after struggling along a very muddy Black Hill track, Baz announced he was going to attempt the scree descent which we've eyed up for quite some time now.  It's a tricky run into it and it might take a try or two till we get the start of it right but the descent itself is exhilarating as you have to hang right over the back of the bike as you come down. All three of us made it down unscathed with Clive in particular conquering his vertigo to loud cheers from Baz and me! Off now to fix more punctures........................

Tuesday, 1 February 2011

Aaaaaagggghhhhh........more punctures!!!!!!

I kid you not, I must have had a 3 foot thorn in my tyre tonight, well okay, maybe 1/4 of an inch, but it happened again and to make matters worse the handle of my pump decided to part company with the body of the pump as I started to blow up the replacement tube. Luckily I had my compressed gas instant inflating canister with me and with a combination of foul and abusive language and this contraption I got enough air into the ruddy thing and struggled home. Strange thing was, the pump behaved perfectly normal when I got home, spooky.........................