Your ride today....

Mrs M

After yesterday's exertions, I went for a lovely flat ride on the "piste cyclable" along the valley and the banks of the lake and on into Annecy and back. I caught the start of the Monday morning rush hour, and arrived among a group of commuters on electric bikes and scooters, as well as some roller bladers, roller skaters and roller skiers. It is a true multi-purpose track, running flat and true the whole length of the valley from Ugine to Annecy. I've enthused about Annecy's cycleway before, so I'll just post a few photos of the outward route this time and let them do the talking:
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Arrived in Annecy with enough time on my hands to wander into the old town. One of my very favourite places. A few more piccies;
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Had a following wind on the return journey .... again on the piste cyclable, retracing my route through Sevrier, Duingt, Bredannaz, Lathuile and Doussard. Lovely views everywhere, and a great surface .... often wider than the vehicular access road that it runs alongside. This shot was taken very close to Doussard, where we have previously holidayed happily three times before .... right at the foot of the "Montagne du Charbon" (centre background):
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This next shot is included to give a little balance to my previous post about my exploits on the Colombiere. (After all, nobody likes a show-off). It shows the precise point where I cried off this time, about 200 metres before the turn into Mont Bogon, where we are staying. Leaving the house this morning had been great, dropping like a stone down the Montmin to Vesonne road down into the valley. Coming back up was a different matter, and I freely admit that I just thought "stuff this!" as soon as I rounded the first hairpin. I'd ground my way up the long, steep straight, but faced with a stretch of 13% after 28.9 miles, I folded. Think I might drive down the hill for my other rides and start my rides down in the valley.
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This next shot was taken from the balcony of the house, and gives an idea just how much of a ramp the road is You can see a white car climbing up it on the left of the picture. I'm actually amazed I climbed up to the Col de la Forclaz via Vesonne and Montmin a few years back. Definitely don't fancy doing it again this year!
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Think I might head off in the other direction along the piste tomorrow.
Cheers for now, Donger.
Lovely pics, thank you :smile:
Behind bars
As you will know better than me, there is one of those 1950s dedicated cycle paths beside much of the A167 between Durham and Chester-le-Street.

Not too many junctions, although the road is quicker.

I reckon going towards Chester the gradient is mostly in your favour, as is the prevailing wind.

Always seems a fast stretch on the handful of times I have done it,
Riding from Durham to Chester le Street the path runs on the East side of the dual carriageway so you're facing the oncoming traffic which means you don't have to give way to traffic coming from behind you at the T junctions. The Arnison Centre roundabout is a PITA whichever way you approach. The biggest problem though is getting back across the A167 to get into C-l-S. I prefer to ride on the road the whole way to avoid this.

The path is just a shared pavement at the side of the main road. It's been resurfaced in the last couple of years and is still in fairly good nick. Think the '50s style path you're thinking about is between Nevilles Cross and Cock o' the North so heading South out of Durham.


A 50 mile ride to The Aldeli in Alderley.


-full of
the autumnalness of September...

I've passed this owl in Mobberley many times and stopped to photograph him a few times. He's started to look quite weathered and ivy is growing on him.


Are we meant to be spotting planes or watching the road?

Anyway, I had a great ride out despite the head winds, 30 miles with hardly any need to stop. I'd wanted to try some different roads, still trying to get the best route to bring a group ride. I went round instead of through Tatton Park which I think was ok for me on my own but some of the roads were a bit busy for a group.

After an enjoyable pancakes and bacon lunch, I had a much slower return despite having the wind more behind me than this morning.
A mix of very quiet lanes and some faster roads, not too bad for a weekday.


Convoi Exceptionnel
Quedgeley, Glos.
Day 3: I cheated this morning, and put the bike on the car to drop down to the roundabout a mile away where I could park up right by an underpass on the piste cyclable. Saved myself a horrible climb back up to the house at the end. Quite cloudy and a tad chilly at first, but you could just tell the clouds were going to burn off. The early morning sun did the trick, and provided some lovely light conditions. A few pictures:

228.JPG 229 Near St Ferreol.JPG 230 Marlens.JPG 231.JPG 232 Marthod.JPG 233 Ugine & Aravis Massif.JPG 234.JPG 235.JPG 236.JPG
A great little ride (pretty much pan flat) up the old railway line from Vesonne and through or past Faverges, Marlens, Ugine and around the corner in the direction of Albertville, but turning around at Marthod. A straight re-trace to Vesonne, but with the benefit of lovely light conditions instead of having the rising sun in my eyes. A great little ride. 21.6 miles today. Loving it.
Cheers, Donger.
Behind bars
Whizzed down through Chester le Street backed by a strong tailwind this morning with no particular place to go. Negotiated the A1M junction and headed into Rickleton where I dropped onto the C2C path.


Roadside flowers at Rickleton.

Turned uphill and upwind on the path through Washington but it is quite sheltered here so I made good progress. That was until I bumped into an old acquaintance with his new wife. He can talk the hind legs off a donkey so after swapping pleasantries I pleaded chilliness due to the wind and was on my way. That chance meeting gave me an idea for the ride though; I'd go call in on a couple of old pals.

So I carried on up the track until I got to Tommy Thomson's bench. Tommy was another old acquaintance and my abiding memory of him is of the sweat dripping from his face as he flogged himself on the chain gang at the age of 62 to keep up with us 20 - 40 year olds. We weren't going to slow down for him and he wouldn't be dropped at any price. Liked a pint too.


Tommy's bench

I left the path here to climb up through No Place and then drop down to South Causey where I called in on the brewer.


Pot still in the brewery


Brewing vessels


How to make beer

After half an hours blether with my pal the brewer I set off again through Tanfield Lea, Tantobie and Flint Hill. All uphill this bit and along with the strengthening headwind there were now some threatening clouds about. It was a lot colder than when I set off too so my next visit to the Ginger Ninja was fairly brief but we made arrangements to meet for a pint later in the month.

It was time to turn for home and now that wind was behind me so it wouldn't take too long. Hit 45mph on the descent from Burnhope and I could have gone faster if I'd been braver but when the wind snatched at the front wheel I applied the brakes gently - who am I kidding? I bottled it.

27 miles with approx 2,000ft of ascent.
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Well-Known Member
This mornings ride was 12 miles off rd.
Started by following the river idle then through idle valley nature reserve to Lound, back down to the Chesterfield canal at Hayton then follow the canal back to Retford.
The canal stretch was tricky because it rarely gets much use, a few dog walkers but not much more so it's a bit overgrown, just a few cuts and a ripped t-shirt received.
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Senior Member
This was actually Mondays ride but only just got time to post( quiet afternoon at work) Only had an hour spare before I was needed on taxi duty so headed on a short ride round the local lanes, I had only got a short distance from home when I met a huge lorry, our lane is very narrow and we don't see many huge lorries because they don't fit! but he did stop and wave me past( although I think he may have been stuck on the corner and didn't want anyone to see), I'm not large but when I got round the corner there was no way I was going to fit so I declined his offer and found a bit of grass verge where I might not get squashed, even that was a bit nerve wracking and I got stung by nettles:sad: but better than mangled by the lorry. There was nowhere on this lane he was going so must have been blindly following satnav.:crazy: I carried on my way dodging the large bits of tree he had taken down on his travels and turned to Whixall, Welshend, Hollinswood and Alkington where I turn back over the canal into the wind up to Fenns Wood then back to Hollinswood crossing the lane I had turned off earlier towards Lower Houses, Coton, Waterloo, Edstaston, Ryebank, turning for Foxholes to try and avoid the wind which was getting stronger, back to Horton where I was close passed by 2 tractors, past The Moatshed and home. I was glad to get home as everyone seemed to be trying to squash me, I don't usually have any problems with tractors but these 2 didn't even try to move over or slow down.16.9 miles, average speed 15.5mph in the wind although it was still warm.
Thirty three and a bit miles this morning, no, hang on, thirty three and a third is more accurate, and just sounds that much better. Thirty three and three thirty secondths has more ‘th’ than any phrase should have, but this post is supposed to be about a bike ride. I will tell you about that.

Sort of cloudy this morning, but blue sky was visible, being chased around the cloudscape by a brisk breeze. It’s the turn of the geared bike to be taken out, various routes to Wetherby and back were almost planned and off I went. The usual detour through Holbeck to miss the big right turn, and out of there to cross the river at Crown Point Bridge. There was still a bit of traffic around, most of it well behaved, when I reached the clock at Oakwood things had quietened a lot. Down the dip and up Wellington Hill. I rarely bestow the Sunday name on that hill, or anything else to do with the Apsley family. Old habits and all.

Keep riding and take the next left after crossing the Ring Road. Whin Moor Lane at this end, turning into Gatelands Lane when it reaches Shadwell. The left turn onto Main Street lacks long sightlines, turning right is just as bad. Slaid Hill and its traffic lights are next, and that whizzy road all the way to East Keswick. With a tailwind this was more whizz than usual, great fun. And the climb. The steep bit starts by the house with the Potts clock in the wall. There is a task, plot all the Potts clocks visible from the road. Most of the ones I know are on railway stations. Hmm, maybe. The A659 next, turn right towards Collingham and eventually left to ride to Linton, crossing the River Wharfe. Linton Road in Wetherby has been resurfaced. Proper, not surface roughed. A pleasure to ride on that has been a long time happening. Through Wetherby and out on the A58 for Collingham and Bardsey. Where I turned left for yet another incomplete ascent of Rigton Bank. Hmmph! Weave through Rigton and leave in the direction of Thorner.

Which has sprouted road works and traffic lights! The bottom of Church Hill took a few minutes to ride past, then there is nothing but Main Street between me and Sandhills. A sheltered road mostly, so the odd gust of wind is a surprise. The hard pedalling is over when the old post box is visible, that part of the road has not changed much. Skeltons and Red Hall lanes to the A58 again and back down that hill a sight quicker than the earlier climb. Oakwood ( Potts ) Clock is next, then the descent to the edge of town and back across the Aire, ‘cos if I don’t do that I cannot reach home. A small corner of Hunslet and up Dewsbury road and to the street where I live. As ever a smile, for home and the ride, those miles were fun.

Squiggles in geography

Ticked off another cycling goal today. Rode to Skegness from Leicester.

Set off around 6:15 expecting to get the 15:09 train at Skegness for a three hour train journey back. It was very gloomy and by mile 16 I was ready to abandon as the heavens opened up. I stopped under a railway bridge to take my phone and cash out of my pocket and into the waterproof top bag and cracked on.

By mile 22 the rain had stopped and I decided to continue, within a few miles it was raining again and I was drenched. I had a cafe stop planned at mile 39 at Corby Glen which has the best cafe in the world but I was that wet I decided to skip it, I had another planned at mile 86 anyway.

I was now getting to the point were if I turned round I'd have some climbing and a head wind to deal with that meant even though I'd knock 20 miles off the distance it was probably easier to just crack on.

After 45 miles I start to descend onto the Lincolnshire flatlands it is still raining and all I can see in the distance is rain, but I know now it is flat as a pancake all the way and with a cracking easterly wind I know apart from the odd few miles I am going to fly to Skegness.

On the due east bits I was comfortably doing 25mph with no effort. Had to slow a bit as I went through Boston and I'm now formulating a plan to buy some cheap clothes and socks for the train ride home. Half an hour later the rain has stopped, the roads are dry and my feet are very cold, so at 77ish miles I stop at the side of the road, take off my trainers and wring my socks out, My feet immediately felt warmer and for the next 2 hours or so the sun shone and with the wind I dried out pretty well.

Got to the cafe stop at Stickney and decided to skip it, I was making such good time I knew I could make the 13:15 train. Got into Skegness, snapped a photo of the beach and was at the station around 12:30!

Got in the house and took my still soggy socks off, scoffed a couple of sausage rolls and already on the second cup of tea.

107 miles in total and Skegness now ticked off. Biked there in 6 hours, took three hours to get back on the train!


twentysix by twentyfive

Clinging on tightly
Over the Hill
Just Jules H and me on this one although Mrs 26 rode with me to the meet in Upton. Nice bright day today and we were wind assisted on the way out. Hillers at Dunnington was quiet when we arrived but filled up before we went. The wind had strengthened and despite hedges we had a bit of effort to expend. Even so it wasn't too tough a ride. 66 smiles


Ebiked hybrid got disturbed from its slumbers in the work bike shed this lunch time. Needed some dry lube with Teflon for my sticking Kyptonite bike lock so after a few back streets, and an annoying shower, onto the A59 down to Starbeck where queueing traffic indicated the level crossing was doing to best to cause traffic chaos. Overtook and undertook as appropriate and reached the barrier just as it went up ^_^ Into Spa Cycles, noting the absence of any bike stand outside :sad:, for the requisite lube and then up the full length of the cycleway on the old railway line, first time in ages I have done the southern section and approached the anti motor cycle barrier at the start expecting to have to stop only to find it had been widened and now the hybrids handlebar fits straight through. Somehow hit autopilot, I wasn't going to go up Bilton Lane but found myself doing exactly that and there was one nasty head wind today so turned off for more back street running. The final right turn to the office looked like a stop would be needed in the middle of road due to the amount of traffic heading the other way but a bus driver slowed and flashed me on :okay: 5.51 miles, 183ft of ebike motor working that bit more.

Rickshaw Phil

Overconfidentii Vulgaris
I've had another few days without rides for no good reason other than I couldn't find the motivation, so made myself get out today despite the forecast of fairly strong winds. I thought that heading into the wind to start with and making the most of a tailwind on the way home would be a good move so headed for Montford Bridge, Shrawardine, Pentre, Melverley and Crew Green to start with, then I'd have a choice of routes to get to Halfway House and Westbury where I should have a good stretch with the wind behind me to Nox before turning off towards Lea Cross, and Exfords Green.

The wind wasn't too much of an issue for the first few miles and I was pleased to see a reasonable number of utility cyclists out. Nothing that would impress anyone from a city but it does seem to be getting more popular locally.

The wind was a bit more noticable on the westerley facing sections after Montford Bridge but I was taking it leisurely so just trundled along to Wilcott Marsh where I found a group of cyclists just finishing fixing a puncture. I stopped to check on them and in the course of chatting they invited me to tag along with their group.^_^ They were headed for Llansantffraid for lunch which was a bit further away than I was intending to go today but I said I'd ride with them to the Melverley area.

We went at a nice relaxed pace and I chatted with some of them. We passed Melverley and by Crew Green I'd decided that I was going to head for Criggion so intended to sta with the group as far as that turning. On the way I had the scariest close pass I've had in a while where a complete moron in a VW Golf decided to overtake between me and the bin waggon which was stationary on the other side of the road. This road is not wide enough for such a manouvre and they came through with inches to spare either side. I was not amused.:angry:

After parting from the group I had a nice uneventful time as I rode round the foot of the Breidden. I was intending to climb up from the other side to Bulthy. It's a fairly steep climb so I paused for a drink at the bottom only to have a builders supplies lorry turn into the lane I was about to ascend. At first I thought it was better out of the way but the lane is so steep and narrow they kept having to stop and I kept catching up. Once past the lorry, the climb goes on.....and on.....and on. I'm sure it wasn't this difficult last time I came up here.:heat: At the top though I'm rewarded with the views of the little hidden valley I've climbed into.

Dropping down the other side towards Halfway House the wind was behind me and helping. After Westbury there is the long straigh(ish) run to Nox which was a blast today and done at some very impressive speeds for the knockabout bike. At Nox I turn off towards Lea Cross. I had a pause for a photo en-route and rejoined the road just after the Shrewsbury Town FC official coach had gone past. I caught up with it again soon after where it had met a lorry on a narrow bit and had to wait while the two of them sorted it out.

I followed the coach left onto the main road where another dipstick (in a new Mini this time) overtook me in the face of oncoming traffic and had to immediately do an emergency stop to avoid slamming into the back of the coach, which was stopped waiting to turn right into the company depot.:ohmy:

The rest of the ride was thankfully less eventful and I had a good trip home with the wind still helping for all but the last bit. I took the shorter way back through Little Lyth as I felt I'd done plenty today.

40.2 miles at 13.1 mph average (not too shabby considering the big hill climb in the middle of it) and a top speed of 34.4 mph.


It looks quite nice out but the wind was quite blustery and there were light showers about.


Pedestrians in the road.


I've climbed quite a lot in a short distance.


Over the summit and heading along the valley to Bulthy.


A classic late summer scene on my way to Lea Cross.
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