Saturday, 26 March 2011

Parbold Hill, Rivington then Winter Hill!

11 weeks to go!

Steve and myself went out early doors today, we were on the road for 7am.
Here is the bikemap route - 
Its a combination of a parbold hill ride i did the other week with the addition of Rivington and Winter Hill just to push ourselves training-wise.

We rode for a couple of hours and did 30miles straight off, Ulnes Walton, Mawdesley, Hilldale, over to Rivington. We got a sausage and egg butty with a pot of tea (£9.60), maybe this was a bad idea as straight from there we went up winter hill which is over 1000ft.

Stats: 50 miles, out for 5hours, max speed 38.6mph, total ascent 3300ft, max elev 1098ft. back home for lunch!

we stop in all the best places!

view towards Horwich, theres traffic lights at the bottom so you have to behave

view from halfway up winter hill


farnan matches

The descent of winter hill should have been quicker but it was straight into the wind which slowed us down a lot. Part of the hillside had been on fire overnight, it was still smouldering as we went past.

Good hard ride, hilly and windy up top (easterly).
Overall a really good ride (if you like that sort of thing!)


Monday, 21 March 2011

new bike mods, and running a red light near Warrington (naughty)

 I have added front rack and panniers to my bike, 20litres, to spread the load between front and back. Previously when we did test weekend rides carrying full gear, the rear panniers were full with no extra room.
We had a slight bit of faffing fixing the rack onto the bike, because it wanted to use the same holes that the front mudguards use, but with a bit of Macgyver invention we got there in the end, (cheers Steve!)

Top Features of the LifeLine Alloy Front Rack

  • Laser etched logo
  • 10.2mm tubing
  • Max weight: 10KG
  • Powder Coating Matt Black
Constructed from 10.2mm hollow tubes

Top Features of the Carradice CarraDry Universal / Front Panniers (pair)

  • Carradice C-system pannier fittings for quick and secure fitting
  • Welded seams for 100% waterproof protection against rain and road spray
  • Made from 600 denier polyester and PVC nylon
  • Easily sponged clean
  • Can be used on the rear when the larger capacity rear pannier is not needed
  • Hi-viz reflectives front and rear
Fantastic Value Waterproof front or rear panniers.

Time is ticking down, we are now only 12 weeks away from departure, whats all that about?!

I went for a ride saturday morning, hadnt planned a route, just set off down one of the A-roads nearby, we are gradually crossing off all the roads in every direction from home! Took the A49 south from Bamber Bridge heading towards Wigan, plenty of traffic. I ran out of food, mostly because I only took two choc bars. This was linked to the fact I only set out to ride further down the A49 than I had before. This changed when I saw roadsigns for Warrington, turned into a partial dare, I turned around about 8 miles from Warrington because I had had enough of the cars/fumes. I could have easily got there, gone much further too, could have stopped and bought food. But we are actually staying over in Warrington on the main LEJOG ride, we will do the town riding early in the day, not saturday morning shopping traffic. Also I spoke to another group of Lejog riders a while back and one of them got runover in Warrington so that put me off slightly...

I didnt take many pics, cos I was trying not to get run over. Actually took only 3 in total - See below! (not my best efforts....)

just noticed the tins of special brew doh! (theyre not mine)

a view
living dangerously?

I got through Wigan unscathed, pretty luckily cos I rode a red light at one point, (this is very bad i know) there are too many lights all in quick succession. Add in buses, impatient drivers, its not a route I am itching to do again! Its the first time I have noticed the car exhaust fumes getting to me. I turned around in Bryn, had done 20miles, so there was only the minor detail of riding 20 miles back home. The sun came out, makes such a difference having the sun on your back after the weather weve had recently. 08:30 till 12:30 home for lunch 40miles, nice.


Saturday, 12 March 2011

Minor navigational issues...

Up and on the road about half eight this morning. I picked another route from my 'On your bike in Lancashire' book. Route 13 - Longridge, Stonyhurst & Chipping. Well that was the intended route anyway....

Heres the route:

I had a minor navigational mishap, 14 miles worth! ha ha ha Mostly because i wasnt looking at the GPS and just followed the road straight when i should have went left. This led to a big hill, i didnt look at Gps going up that either, distracted slightly because I had ridden round there with Steve and knew it was a long slog up that hill. Eventually I realised my mistake a turned round, proceeded to hit 38mph going back down, which is a new personal best!

Found a random country lane and got back on intended route. Good ride, plenty of hills, decent distance of 54miles too. Quiet country lanes with plenty of views. 

Videos and pictures:

er Ribchester
bridge over the River Ribble

I stopped for lunch on a bench by the side of the road, on what I thought was a quiet country lane. A bus drove up mounted the kerb and parked right in front of me with its engine running. I think the driver was trying to kill me with exhaust fumes, wasnt happy, put lunch away sharpish and left. It wasnt even a bus stop! 

The outer ligament of my left knee ( just learned its called the Lateral Collateral Ligament) began to hurt again after about 3 hours. I hope this doesnt become a problem....

13 weeks and 5 days to go!


Wednesday, 9 March 2011

Parbold Hill Ride: 23miles that turned into 44

I went caving saturday, up in the Yorkshire Dales. I am a member of South Ribble Caving Club, will probably put some caving pics on here at some point. We were underground for about 4hours, climbing, crawling, abseiling etc, this meant that I was hurting sunday morning. As part of the LEJOG training we need to be able to get back on the bike when tired so I went for a ride anyway.
Heres the route:

Ulnes Walton
view from Parbold Hill

view from Parbold Hill

 Parbold Hill View point video

So good to get out in the sunshine! It was still chilly, there were loads of cyclists about, its a popular cycling area round there. I got the Route from a book called 'On Your Bike in Lancashire', I added on extra miles to get from my house to the start point in Leyland. I had synchronised the route with all its turns to my Garmin GPS which sits on my handlebars. Well I thought I had! Turns out it decided to miss out the last quarter of the return leg home. So I had to wing it for a little while...ha ha.


Sunday, 6 March 2011

A Stolen Hour...... and cat bike mechanics

Its getting lighter in the evenings now, the potential for biking after work is increasing everyday!
I noticed this on wednesday eve when it was light for an hour after I got home. Sat in work thurs lunch time I got fairly excited by the idea of sneaking in a cheeky ride straight after work. Once I got home the turn-around was quite quick, it will improve with time, I was on the road by 5:20. Quick few miles, rush hour traffic isnt my favourite thing, really good to get out though. Discovered a new linking country lane, along one of the routes I ride regularly, random direction change is welcome! Stolen hours are the best! The roads round here are getting much worse, combine this with rush hour traffic, awful gaping chasms, dusk and its a recipe for disaster.

I passed 1500 miles outdoors on the Ridgeback thurs night, since I purchased it last May, quite pleased with that seeing as its my first ever road bike, seems a good milestone to knock off. (I have done more miles but these have been on static exercise bike/turbo trainer/mountain bike).  My rear brake blocks have now worn out, bikes need brakes, stopping is necessary!

14 weeks till we go! its getting serious now!

worn out much?
Noola knew my chain was worn out before we did
suggesting we fill the inner tube with slime?
all round inspection? this cats a better bike mech than me!
 Friday afternoon I went round Steves, after Noola the cat had inspected my bike we got it up on his bikestand and changed the brake blocks, front and rear. We tested the chain too and that was worn out so we swapped it, the new one went on straight away without having to remove any links. Then we filled my inner tubes with Slime,
The slime is supposed to flow out and seal your inner tube when you get a puncture, only works on small punctures though, potential for spraying your biking buddies with green goo must be quite high for proper punctures!

After we finished Steve put my baby out in the backyard so I went home!

Cheers for now