Tag Archives: peak district

Only 65km

I know that I am riding a fair bit, when I do 65km / 40 mile ride and think “I only did 65km”. Tonight I was out with the club again. There was a hilly 30 miles on the cards. Really though it was a hill, a bloody big one, but just one real climb. I dug deep and pushed quite hard on it, not everything, but about 80%. It was a warm day, but there was a light shower on the climb (max gradient 10% going from 85m to 280m altitude). The ride itself was a bit messy. A few people who hadn’t much experience riding in a group it seemed, or perhaps that it was that there were too many people not knowing each other, and thus not trusting each other. There was someone who insisted a couple of times while riding mid group that he needed to stretch his back, and therefore ride no-handed. It scared the life out of me. Therefore I either rode right at the front, or right at the back of the group. At the back, I would leave enough braking room. It was all a bit nervous. Perhaps there is someone else writing a blog somewhere moaning about the full of himself industry twat, either at the front showboating, or sat at the back burnt out! Oh well, I was trying to stay safe. there was a crash at the beginning of the ride, and I have no idea what happened. It was in front of me, and I was nowhere near it. Hmmm. A strange ride.

Statistics. 65.2km, Ave 27.0, total Ascent 528m. 2h24:54 ridden.

Getting on it.

To use the words of a friend of mine, ‘at the moment you are on it’. I seem to be too. I just can’t get enough of riding at the moment.

Today I had planned to go out on the bike, no matter what. I had checked Manchester Wheelers website, but there was no ride on the cards. I was by myself. I sent text messages to a couple of people, but I don’t really know them, and so when I didn’t get a reply it didn’t surprise me.

The Pretty One was asking yesterday about my plans for today, “well, I need to ride. For one, I need to undo the evil of the crisps and beer” (at the little local beer fest that we went to). If that sounds like I am being a bit silly about food, we ate perhaps two, if not three packs of crisps each. Give that crisps, essentially, are just a waste of time with very little nutritional value at the best of times, it was only lack of option which drove us to this.

The Pretty One looked a little disappointed. “Can we do something together? I know, what about I drive somewhere and you ride there?”

“Good plan – where?”

Chatsworth House was chosen, and I looked at the map and decided on a route through the Peak District to Buxton, then on to Bakewell via the A6, before taking the back roads to Chatsworth.


It was a ride which would rival the route last week. Yes, there was less height gained, but there was one, or two 15% climbs more than last week. Also, I was riding alone. No one to hide behind, and as my friend Matt Page said, yesterday had 3D wind. It came at you from every direction at times – I don’t think it was quite as bad here as it was in Wales for him though – most of the time it was behind me. It hardly made the ride easy though, and again I was lusting after a 25 rear sprocket.


The weather was cold. It was one of those days when you seem to have to take all of the clothing that you own with you. Short sleeve jersey, bib shorts, arm warmers, wind proof, knee warmers, buff, helmet, Ergon HC1 mitts and of course a set of Oakleys. On the climbs though, I had to peel lots of this off, down to an open jersey, with the rear pockets stuffed with the arm and knee warmers. It was a constant struggle to keep warm – you can’t leave all of this kit on when climbing, because it will be soaked with sweat and cause you to freeze.

The ride itself was epic. I will do this ride again. Even the A6, which I wasn’t looking forward to, seduced me as it weaved along a river, cut its way through the rock, while going backwards and forwards under the railway line. It was like Switzerland, but just with the wrong type of trees. It wasn’t that busy either, and, for once, there was a road surface which didn’t feel like it had been shelled. The descent was over 20 minutes long too, even with a 76.4km/h max speed.

Climbing out of Bakewell, I got a message from TPO that she was on her way, and that the schedule was working perfectly. As I pulled into Chatworth, it reminded me of Longleat. Such a beautiful house, I headed for their restaurant, grabbed some pasta and a coke and ate, and lay on the grass for 10 minutes until TPO arrived. Even then the exercise wasn’t over. After the superb picnic which TPO brought with her, we then went for a walk up to the tower overlooking the grounds. I am afraid I had to stop, like some kind of fat person, for a breather half way up.20120514-083232.jpg


Ride Statistics

Time: 3:03:34

Average Speed: 24.1

Distance: 73.6

Max Speed: 76.4

Total Ascent (m): 1,092

Total Descent: 1,006

Max Pos Gradient: 14.4%

Max Neg Gradient 16.1%

Today, I think I will go for a run.

This was an amazing installation outside Chatsworth House – Shauna Richardson’s Woolly Lions.


More here http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-derbyshire-17922125

The Tower, and the view from the top.




It was a busy day on Sunday. In the morning I got up early (at least, early for a Sunday) and hopped on the bike to ride to a pub car park to meet with other people at 9:30am. Since … Continue reading

I ride too

My first ride in about a week, and in the meantime I’d been away on holiday. I need to lose the couple of kilos I managed to pile on in just four days in Marrakech – too many tagines!

Anyway, the sun was out and although it was a little cool, it was ideal for a ride from Manchester (where I now live) into the Peak District. I have a plan with this – riding through the city is horrid, so I will do it on the way out, but return by train, keeping my legs for the enjoyable part in nice scenery. – And what scenery too. 65km later I am on the train heading home. I fly to Germany tonight so refuelling, packing and spending some time with the Pretty One is on the cards before I sample Germanwings to Cologne.



It doesn’t take long for the blog to become neglected. It isn’t intentional, more that other things take priority. Should I write the blog, or use my free hour to ride a bike?

The weekend was interesting. The Pretty One works for the BBC and her entire department is relocating to Manchester. To sell this to it’s staff they invited them, and their partners for an introduction to Manchester. As it is, we know people there, so we made a weekend out of it. My feelings are mixed. Mostly for work I need a good international airport, which Manc has, although it doesn’t cover the 290 destinations than Heathrow currently offers. What it does offer is the Peak District National Park about 20 mins drive. This is an awesome prospect for me, with none of the problems for riding that a close proximity to London brings. The city itself is also nice. I am not from the South East, and haven’t inheritted the blinkered view that sometimes is associated with that. Chances are, I am off in the next couple of years to the some of the best cycling in the country.

We went walking in the peaks. I have included pictures.