intrigued by the new fangled "gravel" bikes i thought i'd have a go at converting my 29er hard tail to one. which meant swapping the tyres for some 35mm CX rubber. these feel quite odd as the rims they are now mounted to are also 35mm in width. i've also had to change the gearing slightly as the 32T chainring i had on meant i was almost always on the 13 or 11 tooth sprocket. I've now fitted thos 36T chainring which gives me a much higher gear without having to sacrifice the lower gears.
so far s good, the bike rolls well but i still have the option of some mild off road too. i'm looking forward to doing some exploring on this bike
Wednesday, 5 April 2017
I had to pop to Slam69 a very fat bike friendly shop in Gloucestershire so it was too good an oportunity to miss not to go ride in the Forest of Dean for a few hours. this being a friday the extra bonus was that the forest was just about empty so i was able to session trails, ride them, then ride back up the wrong way and do them again. i pretty much followed the way marked parts with a bit of trail finding too, all in all a great few hours riding in the sunshine.
This was the first proper, all in daylight after work ride. a uneventful and thankfully quick drive home, superman in a phone box-esque change into my riding kit and i was out and away. I only skirted the woods and headed to waseley for a quick photo op, the over cast sky didn't help the light for taking shots but as quick as i got there i was on my way back with more fun in the woods in the dying light. bring on those summer night rides!
I'd spied this bridleway for about the last six months, it's off to the side of one of my cycle routes to work. i've seen the local hunt using it and a quick survey on google earth showed it was long and bordered on both sides by trees, it ran out on a quiet lane. so with a spell of decent weather occuring I asked the guys if they wanted to do a bit of exploring. we got to the bridleway entrance and were greeted with mud and a fallen tree. not a good start, i asked the guys if they wanted to try somewhere else but the consensus was that we'd carry on. well that was probably a mistake, within the path had become a stream, with small and large polished rocks embedded and loose in it, a few fallen trees hindered progress and then it got worse, thick gloopy mud bordered by thorny bushes. non of us escaped unscathed, all were bleeding from one limb or another by the end, the only bonus was the sun was still shining. i don't think we'll be back to this bridleway any time soon and Craig now needs another pair of white trainers!
Monday, 20 March 2017
there has been a lot of tree removal on the NWAlps because of a tree disease and the need to remove the affected trees and space ou the others to help stop the spread. areas are being made back into the heath land that they originally were.
the pile of wood is huge, you'd think that there were no trees left at all and the fanced off bits of the forest look like all the best trails have been affected and maybe lost forever. but fear not, a recce yesterday showed that all the old favourites look intact so far. Also all this clearing means we can get access to parts that were overgrown before and we can start to shape and build new trails, all is not lost, DON'T PANIC!
today was the first Cycle Studio Redditch social ride with Alex, Dan and Mark two of our customers. Alex is the one we all tried to hang on the back wheel of, but he is 22 years younger than me! more worrying is that Mark is 9 years older than me and he kept up with Alex the whole ride, he does however have a carbon fibre wonder bike and i'm using that as an excuse. i was barely able to hang on to Dan's wheel though and he's hardly ridden lately due to a back injury. so not a very good performance. I will say i rode 30 miles on a fat bike into a bloody great headwind 16 hours earlier and my legs were showing signs that they needed a break.
It was though, great fun.
fail: the lawnmower was out of fuel
fail: the petrol station doesn't sell petrol cans
fail: fully fuelled the lawnmower pull cable snapped
win: the local lawnmower repair place had what i needed for 1/3 of the pride of B&Q
win: i was able to ride there
win: and extend the ride
fail: the grass still needs cutting