Sunday 3 May 2020

View from the saddle

wild garlic and bluebells

As you will have read last Sunday, the routes I am riding are now very well photographed. I started a new theme. A view from the saddle. Although I have to get off the bike to retrieve the camera from the bag. Now Removing the personal need to include my bike in the shot has opened up new angles and opportunities.

Let me know what you think.

This really was from the saddle, apologies for the angle. The camera moves around on the mount, I never know how wonky it's going to be. A steep hill that is worth the effort. Unfortunately the microphone isn't good enough to pick up the bird song and gentle breeze that greeted me at the top.  I suggest you watch it with the sound off. I didn't realise how long it takes me to climb this one, it doesn't even look that steep, but I can assure you it is.

The Enterdent

Wednesday was a low point in the week. The weather had worsened, I resigned myself to getting wet at some point.
black and white hill moody clouds
the dark clouds matched my mood
The rain held off for a while after I left the house, allowing me time to warm up. It was just a drizzle that never delivered a drenching.

A high point of the week was reading North to Alaska by Trevor Lund. A ride from the southern to northern tips of the Americas.

North to Alaska Trevor Lund
got myself comfy for an hour or so of reading
It hooked me straight away, I finished it on Friday. The pace, level of detail and writing style is just about right for me. Each day as I got comfy to read it I found myself wanting to complete one more page before having to stop.

I haven't cycled anything to rival this epic ride, or had to sleep rough; but it does resonate with me. A few years ago two friends and I rode to Paris - no guided ride though - we carried all we needed on the bikes and stayed in B&B's. The route and difficulty not a patch on Trevor's, it did create great memories for the three of us.

Richard made a video from recordings on his phone and some pictures I took.

Another reason for my low motivation wasn't the potential soaking, it was having to ride alone. The occasional solo ride is okay, I can start when I want, ride as long as I feel like, go anywhere. But it's been a long time since an accompanied outing. It's now become a challenge to get out every day, rather than something I look forward to. Sometimes it's just so that I can say I've done it.

There should have been rides to pubs and cafes by now or just the usual outings to drink tea and chat.

pub ride in 2011
pub ride in 2011
Trevor rode mostly alone. I wonder how people related to the stories on his return.

The only comparable routes in the UK are Lands End to John O'Groats, or riding around the coast. The former is one I would love to do, given the time and money. No more than a local warm up compared to the book.

Thursday was a bad day; another puncture and then getting caught in a hailstorm close to home. As always my mood improved after a shower and tea.

Fair play if you watch the above until the end. Two minutes of me climbing through the trees after replacing the inner tube. I repaired the leaky one later in the kitchen.

Last week insects were bouncing off me, this week it was hailstones.

Friday I cycled past more evidence of how poorly some regard the countryside.

wheels amongst the bluebells
wheels amongst the bluebells
I have seen more fly-tipping over the years, it saddens me to see beautiful areas damaged in this way.

The sun returned on Saturday so I went out on the road bike, the previous days have been on the mountain bike.
a lane off pilgrims way
a lane off pilgrims way

I couldn't resist taking another pic of my bike. Followed by a view both ways along Pilgrims Way. 

More insect derived protein was consumed: I was really peppered with them all along the lane. Not complaining, it's better than hailstones.

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