Sunday, 26 February 2012

A bit of "hike a bike" today

A bit of pushing on the Kirk Road track over to the Howe, we were getting up into the mist at this point.

Roger climbs over the stile in style!!

Baz does the scree slope.

Me doing it as well

Roger does it too, only Clive (who claimed a leg muscle injury) failed to do it today!
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A different route today for a change, cycling along the old railway track to Penicuik, then up to Silverburn and along to the old Kirk Road track over the Pentlands to the |Howe. From there up the valley, down to Threpmuir  and along to Harelaw. Up the 7 steps then down to Glencorse reservoir and back to base for a total today of 27.5 miles (and frost free again!!).
No mishaps to report, though we did hope for one as Roger came down the scree slope for the first time, but disappointingly he arrived unscathed at the bottom!!

Thursday, 23 February 2012

Thorns, nails, newts and mud.

At last a night ride with the temperature above freezing, courtesy of a wind coming from the south-mid Atlantic, the downside being the ground conditions, softish, wetish and muddyish. An interesting  feature of last night's ride was quite a few small newts scuttling about, we even caught one but my camera phone didn't reproduce anything worth viewing.
For a change it wasn't me having the punctures, Dougie picked up a thorn from somewhere (there wasn't a hedge in sight) and Roger managed to somehow get his front tyre pierced with a nail about an inch and a half long, and then replaced the tube with one that was also holed!!
Just over 24 miles as usual but no frostbite for a change!

Sunday, 19 February 2012

Saturday night (well afternoon) and Sunday morning

Dougie comes down the strip to the gate

Roger's just at the back of him.

Me supervising Dougie blowing up my tyre!!

Sunday morning, and a break for a biscuit in the sun at last!
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Out on Saturday afternoon with Dougie and Roger to do the winter loop of 24 miles in the Pentlands and managed to pick up two punctures,(why is it always me?) on the way. Conditions on Saturday were greasy and cold and on Sunday morning when I did the same loop again but this time with Baz and Clive it had changed to bloody cold and icy in bits! Thank goodness no punctures this time though we had to put some more air in the tyre at one point as tube changing at -5 centigrade ain't much fun. As it was Clive's freewheel had its moments with the occasional freeze up, cured by giving the bike a hefty dunt and Baz's gear did their usual freeze up at low temperatures. A big plus from these two trips wearing the new Muddy Fox jacket was that I appear to have lost another 2 pounds in weight, or was it sweat? Anyway I'll soon put that back on with a bit of concentrated chocolate eating this week.

Tuesday, 14 February 2012

You'd have to be good to go out on a bike like this!!

A customers bike in my friendly local Trek shop.
It's a bit like the footballers with the fancy hairdos and colourful boots, you have to be pretty damn good to go out riding a bike this beautiful, (and that's coming from a devout mountain biker!)
I'd still like to see him ride it down to Glencorse from the throne though, in the depths of winter!
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Monday, 13 February 2012

The Bike Station, Edinburgh.

One of my customers as well as good friends
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Sunday, 12 February 2012

New record for Pentland 24 mile winter loop (again!!)

Baz, Clive and me set off at 6pm tonight (Sunday) for what Clive and myself thought was a gentle Sunday night ride. Baz had other ideas! My efforts on Friday night were like a red rag to a bull and he set off as if his pants were on fire with the two of us hanging in behind for grim death at first. A new fastest time at the top of the Balerno tar road only served to spur us on and even an owl nearly taking Baz out at one point couldn't stop us setting both a new fastest riding time of 2 hours 3 minutes dead as well as an overall time of  2 hours 6 minutes. That mileage also got me up to the 100 miles for the week again after I'd intended to have an easy 60 mile week!

Thursday, 9 February 2012

Survival was the name of the game last night.

Another trip round the "Pentland 24 mile winter loop" last night and there was no chance of any records being broken, only bones, with the ice beginning to take on the form of mini glaciers on some of the tracks! No actual incidents, apart from Baz, coming off on the climb up the seven steps much to his disgust!
Best laugh was Roger's reaction when a huge owl flew of a fence post as we passed and nearly knocked his helmet off!

Tuesday, 7 February 2012

Not bad for this time of year considering the conditions

112 miles last week, off road and in the dark at an average temperature of -4 centigrade, not bad at all I thought! The lights have performed brilliantly both on the handlebars and helmet, but I'm beginning to look forward to riding in daylight again without the fear of coming off on ice and damaging my already fragile collar bones! (And a few photos as well!)

Thursday, 2 February 2012

Fastest time yet on the Pentland winter 24 mile loop.

Conditions were nearly perfect for our 24 mile Pentland loop last night with the ground brick hard with the frost and no wind, which was a first for about 6 weeks, during which time we've had to face the climb to the Howe and beyond in the teeth of howling gales! Four of us last night, Dougie, Roger, Neil and myself, the only difficulty being ice here and there attempting to catch the unwary! When we'd finished the Garmin showed a riding time of 2 hours 16 minutes, 13 minutes better than our previous fastest time and with the average temperature at -4 centigrade it'll be interesting to see what time we can do it in the summer (if it comes this year) in suitable conditions.  Oh, and I managed to get the compulsary punture yet again!