Sunday, 17 February 2013

A view of Edinburgh ( and nearly a few other things as well!)

Two nights in a row we went riding up the Pentlands, the first night it was Mark, Baz and me and we couldn't have picked worse weather if we'd tried. gale force winds, horizontal frozen rain and icy patches scattered here and there to catch us out. Naturally when we got home we said it had been a great ride! Funny how you become quite an acllompished liar once you've been mountain biking for a few years! Next night was totally different, the wind had dropped and though the temperature was just above freezing it actually felt warm, mind you after the night before anything would be an improvement.
Dougie took this picture at the top of Allermuir just as Baz was re-zipping and I was still in the process of relieving myself, luckily facing the other way! When we got home at least we didn't have to lie when we said it had been a good ride. 44 miles covered in the two nights we were out.

The grounds slowly drying out.....

Over 9 hours of mountain biking between Saturday and Sunday, and at the top of Minch Moor at Innerleithen on the Southern Upland Way there was still snow lying in some of the sheltered parts.

It must have been pretty wild last Wednesday when it was drifting over these dykes.

After we came down the hills a bit it was mud that was the problem and a wash in the burn helped to clean the bike up a bit!

Sunday morning and a contemplative pose high in the Pentlands!

Biggest mishap this morning (Sunday) when I failed on a ditch crossing, I had to do the compulsory lying still till it was recorded for posterity.....

Over 30 hard miles on Saturday at Innerleithen, up to Minch Moor, along to the Three Brethern, down to Yair back up to eventually reach Caddon Bank and back down again for over 5000 feet of muddy, wet and occasionally snowy biking.
Sunday was more of an easy ride with a bit exploration on a descent into South West Edinburgh we'd never done before to finish up with over 25 miles and 131 miles for the week.

Sunday, 10 February 2013

Brass monkeys this morning!

Baz gazing contemplatively(?) into the distance!

This could have been what he foresaw, a broken chain repair in about the coldest spot in the Pentlands!!

Not often you see sheep wading through freezing cold water, rather them than me...

6 am this morning and it was flickering snow but it never really came to any more than that. After bumping (not literally) into a squad of soldiers out on exercise halfway up Castlelaw, hardy buggers these guys, we cycled/pushed to the top of Allermuir and wasted no time in turning round and scooting back down again, it was too cold to hang about up there! The route was roughly the same as last Sundays with the odd little bit extra thrown in. Baz had his weekly chain snap but we were better prepared this week and soon had it fixed though the fingers took a while to thaw out afterwards. Just over 28 miles today and I personally cant wait for a bit warmer weather.

Tuesday, 5 February 2013

Rear mech mishap

This is the result of a free hub that decided to give up the ghost, luckily not too far from base! The hanger broke but after a return journey of walking and using the bike like a scooter I found a spare one in my motley collection of bike junk. My motto, never throw anything away, you never know when it'll come in handy, that hanger's been lying in my toolbox for about 4 years!

Sunday, 3 February 2013

Gale force winds, broken chains, just a normal Sunday morning ride......

A bit of shelter at Harelaw for an energy biscuit, (and we needed it after the struggle on Allermuir)

After a bit of foul and abusive language we got the chain fixed!

Off at 6 am this morning and the wind was howling like a banshee, at least it had stopped raining though. There were still patches of ice lurking, hoping to catch us out and higher up into the Pentlands they did once or twice. We did the full Castlelaw climb today and after surviving nearly being blown sideways at times we went for Allermuir as well. This was where the wind really came into its own and the frozen ground as well added to the "fun"! When we turned at the top of Allermuir for the descent the wind blew me into the fence before I'd managed to get right onto the bike and the whole way down was a battle against the wind and patches of ice (good fun actually!)
The biggest mishap today was Baz's chain snapping, it had broken yesterday when he was out alone and is obviously buggered, but with the usual mixture of bad temper and arguing as to the best method of repair we had it fixed reasonably quickly!
Just under 28 miles today and I doubt if we've been out in a stronger wind.