Monday, 14 December 2009

North Cheshire Clarion club run 13 Dec 2009

Magical Mystery Tour

Looking out of the window first thing in the morning revealed a nice thick white frost and on the car ice glinting off the windscreen - it was dark and very cold at 7am when I got up for the Sunday run. I'm not one pf these people who can get up at 8am grab a quick bite and be there at the start point for 9, wish I was but I'm not. I like to have a good breakfast a good sit down with a big mug of tea followed by a coffee and a browse of the news on my laptop before I even come alive, then and only then am I ready to face the world the cold and the frost...

So load the car up with bike n gear after giving the car a good defrost first and then drove out to the start point, it was fairly slippy on the side roads so had a good idea that we were in for a hairy time. Stuck all my gear on including a buff that made me look like the invisible man (when he was not invisible if you know what I mean) complete with glasses, cap and helmet - I may have looked a little scary but I didn't care, I was warm and that's all that mattered, the only problem I found out later with having a buff cover up most of your entire face is it's difficult to drink anything unless you want it sieved first - a minor inconvenience...

Setting off from Stretton was a dicey experience, side roads and country lanes thick with white frost meant riding at a slow pace and gingerly navigating bends waiting for a tumble - didn't happen but there was a few times my back wheel spun out. As the miles wore on the temperature changed slightly for the better our confidence rose and the speed upped.

Now this is where the magical mystery tour comes in, around about Moulton our 'guide' took us over water via two wooden frosty bridges, one slip and there was a good chance of a dunking - but it was a very scenic route so well worth it... then we rode some cross country up some semi frozen mud 'trails' (a bit like Arctic tundra), this experience was a bit different and called for some careful navigation to avoid the many HUGE potholes and general loose bits of mud - those potholes are just mere dints in the road for a mountain biker with suspension and fat tyres but to a roadie on 23mm tyres and no suspension aside from bum cheeks, they were huge, HUGE, (no not the bum cheeks)...

A stop off for tea n cake then on again for the homeward bound part of the ride and it's here we observed what looked like a fancy dress time trial, we overtook Little Bo Peep with her sheep and travelling in the opposite direction were 2 Santas and Jimmy Saville complete with cigar, hows about that then!!!

Overall because of the white roads we had a slow start with a low speed run out from Stretton that soon got a little faster as we moved onto the clearer main roads and the sun coming out to play. Then off the main roads as we went wild in the country, next we frightened anglers out of their tranquil musings as we all trundled past topped off later on by a bit of fancy dress passing by - A very different entertaining Sunday ride.

My Stats
43 Miles, 3hrs 3min, Av Speed 14.1mph, 1424 ft climbing.

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