What’s a girl to do with 11 days holiday?!
Well, what any self-respecting girl should do of course… ride her bike!!
I was lucky enough to get 11 days off over the last 2 bank holidays so with thoughts of a chance to ride some wicked trails in North Wales a plan was hatched to head off. But first…
Friday 22 April – Surrey Hills
We took the tandem out for a spin, taking in the cool trails of Dorking, Coldharbour, Leith Hill, Peaslake and the North Downs then back over Box Hill.
Total: 4 hours, 52km and 880 meters climbing
Saturday 23 April – Cannock Chase
After picking up Adam we headed off to Cannock Chase and rode Follow the Dog and Monkey Trail which was dry and fast. They have added a few more downhill options which were duly explored and were full of fun. Even Adam had to admit that one of the Black runs actually scared him for a few moments too!
Darren managed to fall off a log and break his Avid XX brake reservior, only to fix it using a bottle of Finish lube oil and electrical tape which lasted the whole week.
Total: 1.45hours, 23km and 420 meters climbing. Adam puncture = 1
Sunday 24 April – Peak District
Headed to the Peak District for an epic ride we had picked out using Adams MBR maps and joined two of them together to give us a big loop. What an amazing area, big open farm land with a good mix of riding for all to enjoy. We covered both the Dark Peak and White Peak areas with the best part for me being a rocky climb to the top of a hill and then the rocky decent pushing techinical abilities to the limits and beyond, with the end result being a massive grin at the bottom!
Total: 6 hours, 80km and 2561 meters climbing. Adam puncture = 1
Monday 25 April – Llandegla
Headed to Darren’s favorite MTB park in North Wales, Llandegla and must say this must be Adam’s nemesis for punctures (last time he was here he had 5 in one day). The day was a little cool but soon warmed up on the skills area before the wee climb to the top where the Black trail starts with a fast descent down rocky twisting singletrack. Then, onto another wickedly fun bit of singletrack with berms and small jumps, before a small uphill to the last part of the Red run back to the start. Soooo cool, making you want to go again and again and again – in fact I did 4 laps just for the hell of it!
Total: 5 hours, 84km and 1920m of climbing. Adam puncture = 2
Tuesday 26 April – Penmachno
Went to my most favorite track in Wales this time, Penmachno. I don’t need to say anymore as you have seen a recent write up on this already.
Total: 2.40 hours, 22km and 600m climbing. Adam puncture = 1
Wednesday 27 April – North Wales
This was a Darren special, so Adam and I were prepared for anything!!! Started east of Snowden by Pont-y-Benglog and headed north east and followed the pipeline which took us past Llyn Cowlyd reservior, then onto a road into Llanbedr-y-Cennin. After that, up a long climb to a roman road doing the Druids Circle, then down a cycle path and on to a road that took us to Bethesda. Here Darren took the cycle path back to the camper while Adam and I rode up over and around the Slate mines into Llanberis to meet Darren and go to our favourite pub for a pizza and a pint!
Total: 5.30hours, 81km and 2186 meters. Adam puncture = 1 and sliced a tyre!
Thursday 28 April – Coed-y-Brenin
We rode The Beast and also the MBR trails again, you will be familiar with these ones!
Total: 3.54hours, 56.6km and 1015 meters climbing. Adam puncture = at least 2…
Friday 29 April – Cotswolds
We traveled to the Cotswolds to meet up with a mate of mine. The trails around there where like around the Mole Valley, there are many once you ride with a local. The trails were really cool with loads of tree roots and some awesome singletrack and some very good sharp climbs.
Total: 4 hours, 55km and 1300 meters climbing. Adam punctures = 1
…Saturday saw us have a rest day…
Sunday 1 May – North Downs
Rode with the Moles which had its adventures and mishaps but really fun ride.
Total: 4.23 hours, 68km and 1140 meters climbing. Adam punctures = 1, even on a different bike
Monday 2 May – South Downs
Well my last day of holidays, so Darren went wind surfing and droped me at Amberley where I joined the South Downs way and rode to Anningtom Farm. From there I took the Downs link to Cranleigh, then up to Winterfold and on to the trails into Peaslake and Holmbury Hill, Leith Hill, Coldharbour and finally home, with a head wind most of the way.
Total: 5.24 hours, 86.6km and 1590 meters climbing
So all in all a fantastic 11 days with a total of 40 hours riding 609.4km and 14,022 meters of climbing – sweet! Adam had a total of about 10 punctures that I know of and also did a tyre, all I can say is so much for snake skin tyres… A big thanks also to Darren for all the driving and putting up with all my big riding ideas.
I’ve already got the next one sorted…