Sunday, 29 November 2015

Made the 100 mile target this week with a struggle!

The river crossing this morning, neither of us was brave enough to attempt to cycle through it, the thought of falling off and having to lie in the ice cold water while the other person fumbled for a camera to record your indignity was just to much to accept!

The climb up the valley from the Howe where we started with a heavy snow shower which strangely turned to heavy rain as we got higher up even though the temperature stayed below zero!

This past week has been a hard one to keep the mileage up to scratch, the weather has been pretty rough, strong winds and heavy rain at times. Wednesday was my saviour as it turned out reasonable and I was able to get 2 rides in totaling 48 miles for the day.  
I continue to support the MTB industry financially much to the detriment of my bank balance, the latest big (there's been a lot of small) purchase being tubeless ice spikers for the spare bike. These have been duly bedded in withover 30 miles of tarmac riding, thank god that's over with, you need a pair of ear muffs to put up with the noise off them. Unless there's exceptional snow in the next 4 weeks I should be able to reach the yearly aim of 5200 miles of off road riding, but I;m still holding my breath, you never know what Scotlands' weather can throw at you!  

Monday, 23 November 2015

Baz moves up to a 30+ mile ride! And the weather's getting worse....

Early last week I was confronted with this flooding on a back road on my way back home

Baz, Clive and me out on another Baz rehabilitation ride on the back roads of Midlothian

Gladhouse Reservoir looking remarkably bleak with the Moorfoot Hills looking even bleaker in the background.

At one time Baz would have come down this like a flash, but these days he's pre-occupied with his injured achilles!

Out with Kathy today and she discovered what a wet greasy root can do to your stability, full marks though for lying on the wet ground till I got a photo taken of her crash!

She opted out of crashing in the river crossing and went for the push round the side, pity because it would have been an even better picture!

Another week of strong winds and heavy rain with a little bit of snow and ice flung in to add to the mix. Baz continues his fight back to fitness, I'm currently enjoying leaving him for dead on any climbs we do but I've no doubt revenge will be fully administered in due course. Through all the rubbish weather of the last week I did however manage just short of 130 miles to stay on course for the magic 5200 by the end of the year. 

Saturday, 14 November 2015

Baz's first 20+ mile ride since his injury

Clive and I went along to bike with Baz today from his house, one reason was the weather forecast which is diabolical for our normal Sunday ride tomorrow and the other was physiological he still expects his achilles to go snap as the slightest bit of pressure is exerted on them! Nothing drastic was attempted, probably the most extreme was the crappy little descent pictured above!

It doesn't seem only a week or so ago that we were dressed in shorts and T shirts, full length waterproofs are the order of the day now with temperatures having dropped by 10 degrees C

An easy bit of pedalling along the Union Canal through Linlithgow.

22.5 miles done this morning and while it wasn't particularly demanding it was big step in Baz's fight back to fitness! I managed another 14 miles after I got home when I got invited out for a bike ride with Kathy and Graeme who was on his new bike. It seemed rude to refuse and it also took my weekly mileage up to 115 miles!!

Tuesday, 10 November 2015

Normal weather resumes.........that's wind and rain.....

After a good ride on Sunday morning with Clive in between rain showers things went a bit downhill, the wind rose to gale force through Sunday night and only moderated slightly through the day on Monday, but to make up for that it chucked down with rain all day. I managed out today, Tuesday, doing a good impression of the Ancient Mariner with all the waterproofs I had on, but at least I stayed dry. The photo above shows about 50 yards of a short stretch of road I cycled along with the water about a foot deep in the middle. Tomorrow's weather is forecast to be a bit better but more misery appears to be heading our way for the end of the week. This 5200 mile target by the end of the year could still be in doubt! 

Tuesday, 3 November 2015

From bright blue skys to near freezing fog, that's November in Scotland

Out with Clive to visit the mini Kelpies which are outside the Royal Dick Veterinary College in the Bush Estate, quite spectacular illuminated in blue. The red light at Clives rear end belongs to his bike and isn't a flash of inspiration from his tea-time curry!! 

Out with Kathy through the day on Monday and she did her maiden crash into a grassy ditch, in actual fact she managed another four before the ride was over!

Going east along Hare Hill with the Pentland Skyline in the background, it's more like the middle of summer than the 1st of November.

It's gone from bright sunshine to thick fog in a couple of days since the week-end, but that's nothing new for Scotland, the latest nonsense in the newspapers is that we've to have 100 days of snow and the worst winter for 50 years. We get this every year at this time so I suppose eventually they'll get it right! Anyway, make hay while the sun shines and it's shining not too bad just now (when it's not foggy!)