Sunday, 5 February 2012

Duathlon, only without the silly running bit...

Well having decided that having the bikes nicked was not going to cause me to throw my toys out of the pram (Crying, spilt milk etc) my first full day off in a good few weeks would be spent in the saddle, normality was returning as it were.  The omens weren’t looking good as me and regular road training partner James flogged our way around the back roads of Somerset, water bottles freezing and bikes complaining at the salt and minus temperatures. Never the less it was a fairly relaxed start that saw me heading from Bristol up through Chepstow to the forest of dean early the following morning, well at least it was sunny…

To prove the point, the seven bridge at -4

The plan was to ride the 40 odd miles to the pedalabikeaway centre in the middle of the forest and meet some lads who had travelled up for the day, and crucially had agreed to bring a spare mountain bike. Arriving just after 11 (Strangely bang on time which considering how bad my legs were feeling was quite a surprise) hands, feet and face were all frozen solid; a coffee was rapidly consumed while pedals were swapped and then we were off again.

If you have never ridden the new trail at FoD then I really would recommend it, although not very long it makes up for this by being one of the few trail centre loops you can do back to back laps with out getting bored; put simply its just fast flowing fun! A couple of laps later and we headed off into the woodland proper retracing tracks held in the memories of races long since past.  With it hovering just below freezing for most of the morning it was truly magic as we dived through the undergrowth shimmering green and silver in the light.

All to soon it was time to swap the pedals back on to triggers broom, well my old ridley and get back on the road. An aim of getting back into Bristol before it got to dark meant coffee and cake had to be cut short so while the other lads headed off for another lap of the trail (Yes it is that good…) I struck out homewards, strangely disappointed my water bottle had thawed out…

Although slightly warmer it was still proper chilly on the way back, stopping only for a moment atop the seven bridge (Well you’ve got to really) the plan of getting back at dusk worked a treat – thus ending one of the best days out in a vey long time. It’s like a duathlon only with none of that silly running business…

Thanks to Daf for the bike (26” wheels, are just plain wrong) and Jim for the coffee…
Until next time :-)

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