A Tale of Two Rides

Today I started my new year off in the way many people will, with a disappointing first ride. I’m sure I can make that into a Carry On style joke but in reality it will not be worth it for either of us.

So, last night when everyone was heading out to party I sat down to watch some of the new Jean-Claude Van Damme thing on Amazon and have an early night.



I will probably ruin the few cool points I may have by saying I did not totally hate it, mainly because it repeatedly points out that Looper ripped off Timecop and wasn’t as good, I can agree with that.  Anyway, I went to bed early as after checking the weather reports I had decided to do this ride today.

As with all things about the new year it quickly fell apart, faster than any resolution I have ever made, except for that one year where I resolved to be more a dick, I managed to keep that one up for a whole year.



I set off nice and early, no cars on the road which was nice. A shower, came on, I knew it was a shower as the Met Office told me it would be a day of showers today. After an hour of riding in this shower I decided it may be the longest shower I have ever known. It was now providing me problems as I was on the climb up Ben’s Buck and it started to turn to sleet and then very wet snow.

The issue was my waterproofs had given up the ghost under the deluge, the peak of my helmet had a waterfall coming down off it, this was making visibility a proper pain in the arse.  I had waterproof hiking shoes on and they were toast, my Merino wool socks that I had on underneath were feeling slightly subaquatic. I could feel the water running down the inside of my waterproof trousers and my legs were starting to chill. To make this, even more, fun I stopped to take a photo, I took my right-hand glove off to get in my pockets and by the time I put my glove back on it had filled with water. Still, I decided to carry on with my plan.
The next issue was traction. With the recent snow melt and all the falling water, the track was becoming gloop, with the occasional loose or falling rock. This made for a good few dabs and as I hit a farmers gate, I thought “Fuck it” and decided to come back another day, risking a crash or illness for a few kudos points on finishing the day was not what I planned, that and I felt hypothermia was a very real issue for my near future. Better to live for another day. The small ride is up on Strava though.

I then went and rode the new Wishawhill Wood Pump Track after warming up in the car for the drive over.


surly instigator at pumptrack


This brings me to a nice point. I took my Surly Instigator to the pump track, this is the bike I went bikepacking on. In both situations I had fun on this bike and did not feel that I needed another bike, despite what I guess the bike trade want you to thing. I hit a few manuals and gained some air, all on a bike that I have completed 9 hour rides on, what more could you possibly ask from a bike.

To finish today off I had my mug plastered on the WEMBO Facebook page today.


Everyone else is doing the super-serious side of themselves for their profile, I decided I show spare the world the view of me in Lycra until the last possible moment, plus I also like the fact that I am laughing at myself, possibly because I realised that at some point I would be riding a single speed bike for 24hrs straight. Life it is a funny old game.

2 thoughts on “A Tale of Two Rides

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