Sunday, January 06, 2013

Day 45 - Back on the programme with an awesome bike ride

It started off with a sunny day.  By the time I reached Redmires Reservoirs I was plunging into thick cloud with that kind of lakeland feeling of watching the weather approach.

Onto the tops and I hoped I would pop out the other side.  I swung around the headland of Burbage then plunged down and down towards Hathersage, stopping to take a photo on the way.

On the basis of the view, I decided to head up Mam Nick and do more of a low ride around Edale.  I descended into Hathersage, where I saw Lynn and Darrell on the tandem and a pack of Sheffield Tri riders.  A lot of waving.

I felt hungry by the time I got through Hathersage so I bobbed into the Woodbine for lunch as I know I can lock the bike up and enjoyed quiche and scone with a very nice coffee.

I completely forgot about Edale when I left the caf so headed into Castelton and purposefully set about exploring a dead-end road I'd not used before... honest.  I was actually hoping to find a way onto the Mam Tor road but was disapointed by a gate so I took another photo.

I retraced my steps and settled for Winnats Pass.  Ass.

I tried to keep my calm, embarking on the climb, knowing that the last time I did this (I mean rode it all) I was on a tripple chain ring with a 1:1 ratio.

All was well up to the visitor centre, then I stood up for a bit and my hamstrings ached from working on my bike yesterday.  NOT good.

I sat down for a while as the gradient continued to steepen and tried to convince myself that if I'm sitting down there's still something left.

I got through the really steep bit by staring at a sheep as I hauled on the bars and hoped to high hopes that I wouldn't hear a popping sound in my hamstring.  Once the sheep moved out of view I stared at some bloke's wife walking down the road until the gradient eased and I could sit down again.

Thank you to whoever shouted, "go on Trep" as I fought to find my breath.

Once on the main roads I decided to head for the Derbyshire Dales instead of trawling back through Edale and facing that final kicker over to Mam Nick.  A kestrel sat ontop of a barn, its face turned away like a shy child so I couldn't recognise it as a bird until I was passing right by.  Beyond that, a house had a garden fence full of cats - 6 different ones - each with its own fence post to sit on.  I plunged into Perrydale & around Eldon Quarry, narrowly avoiding a man carrying a shotgun and wibbled my way over to Great Hucklow, Foolow and Eyam, taking the high valley-side road back into Grindleford and ride up past Froggat and the wedding venue to finish off the day.

Tempting as it was to go into Longshaw for another brew I deferred to going home in daylight as I didn't have a light.  Once I got to the city, though, I made my new way home, chosing the hilly rides over the hills of Sheffield instead of trawling through traffic on Eccleshall road.

82km & 1635m climbing.  I think that ticks a few boxes.

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