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Thread: Today's Bike Ride

  1. #7751
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    And so you should be!
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  2. #7752
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    I took on the Cambrian Coast Sportive Big Dog route on Saturday which was one of my main objectives this year. I was a bit apprehensive prior to the event, having only done 500 miles on the bike since my shoulder op in March, but decided to give it a go thinking I could always divert to one of the shorter routes.

    A cloudy but dry Aberdyfi saw me set off at 8am. A flattish trundle to Tywyn and on to Arthog. The usual route goes over the bridge to Barmouth and then back over the Mawddach estuary on the rickety wooden bridge at Penmaenpool. The Barmouth bridge is closed so the route was diverted along the Mawddach Trail which is an old railway line. No problem for me but when I got to Penmaenpool and headed back towards Arthog on the road I saw dozens of cyclists heading in the opposite direction. This caused me to doubt my nav skills but I carried on and turned left up to Cregennen Lakes which was a steep 15% + series of hairpins.

    Once at the lakes at the first feed station it became clear that the reason that I had earlier seen cyclist going in the opposite direction was that they didn't want to take their precious machines on the trail so did an out and back on the tarmac to Penmaenpool and back to Arthog.

    A ride down into Dolgellau and then up to Cross Foxes and feed station 2. It started to rain on the way up to Bwlch Oerddrws so I stopped, with others, to put a waterproof on. They were amused that I put an OR hooded running jacket on rather than a fancy skintight expensive cycling one and their amusement increased when I passed them on the drop into Dinas Mawddwy sounding like a yacht with billowing sails!

    Once in DM the jacket was off as was the rain and I took it steady up to Llanymawddwy as I knew what was coming. At the bottom of Bwlch y Groes I selected my lowest gear and ground it out. Two young lads came alongside me, one of whom pushed on the other saying "he's a machine". I replied " don't try to keep up with him as its a long drag" but off he went dancing on his pedals. Guess what. Three quarters of the way up I passed them both, sheepishly pushing their bikes. They weren't the only ones.

    Whilst there is no shame in running out of steam I was quietly amused as I passed some very expensive bikes, which included Bianchi, Pinarello and a Specialized Tarmac, being taken for a walk by their riders!

    I found BYG a lot tougher than on my recce but I had 3'000feet in my legs this time but once over the top, and half way around, the drop into Llanwychllyn was lovely. The next 15 miles of single track gated road towards Trawsfynedd was fantastic. Very lumpy and remote, apparently known as "The Ranges". Views over to Arenig Fawr and Rhobell Fawr. Shortly before reaching Trawsfynedd a left took us into Coed y Brenin, fantastic views of the Rhinogs, and over more lumpy terrain to the picturesque village of Llanfachreth, start of Ras Rhobell Fawr which I shall be at on Nov 6th.

    Downhill to the main road and then steeply up through Brithdir to Cross Foxes before a short climb and then a fantastic downhill and predominately flat run in through Tywyn and the finish in Aberdyfi.

    A total of 100 miles, 9'850 feet in 7hrs 32min excluding feed station stops. All hills climbed without stopping and really chuffed to get around considering how little cycling I have done. Shoulder a bit sore though now, mainly from pulling on the bars and also from the numerous cattle grids!

    A really well run event with great feed stations supplying Sausage Rolls, Bananas and Flapjack. I carried my own food but all I consumed from it was one gell on the climb up to Brithdir but I wish I hadn't as it made me feel sick!

    If a tough scenic ride floats your boat then I would recommend this.

    I just need to get around the 3 Peaks in a decent time now and this years goals complete.
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  3. #7753
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    Good luck at the 3 Peaks Llani... i shall be spectating... running over from Ribblehead via Ingleborough to the finish.

  4. #7754
    Quote Originally Posted by Llani Boy View Post

    Whilst there is no shame in running out of steam I was quietly amused as I passed some very expensive bikes, which included Bianchi, Pinarello and a Specialized Tarmac, being taken for a walk by their riders!
    Ah those Pinarello riders - more show than go.
    "...as dry as the Atacama desert".

  5. #7755
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    Great effort Llani, taking in some of Mid Wales finest scenery. Love the Llanymawddwy Valley. Have you ever been up to the source of the Dyfi?

  6. #7756
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    Quote Originally Posted by Llani Boy View Post
    I found BYG a lot tougher than on my recce but I had 3'000feet in my legs this time but once over the top, and half way around, the drop into Llanwychllyn was lovely. The next 15 miles of single track gated road towards Trawsfynedd was fantastic. Very lumpy and remote, apparently known as "The Ranges". Views over to Arenig Fawr and Rhobell Fawr.
    That road is called Dol-y-Moch according to the list here: https://www.sabre-roads.org.uk/wiki/...Roads_in_Wales . It is indeed a great ride. I particularly liked the view of Moel Llyfnant: on the Arenig Fawr race (which I ran the day before cycling over Dol-y-Moch) you just go up and down a steep, grassy slope on the north side of the mountain, but from the south it's a much more dramatic scree slope.

    Quote Originally Posted by MattPo View Post
    Great effort Llani, taking in some of Mid Wales finest scenery. Love the Llanymawddwy Valley. Have you ever been up to the source of the Dyfi?
    I have: on a very hot day last Summer, I had finished my water on the walk up Aran Fawddwy from Llanuwchllyn, and descended where the crags end on the ridge to Drysgol, to refill my bottles from the headwaters above Creiglyn Dyfi.
    In his lifetime he suffered from unreality, as do so many Englishmen.
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  7. #7757
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    Quote Originally Posted by Travs View Post
    Good luck at the 3 Peaks Llani... i shall be spectating... running over from Ribblehead via Ingleborough to the finish.
    Thanks Travs. Hopefully I might bump into you somewhere on the day.

    I am not particularly looking forward to it as I hate running on paved sections and I find that they can cause one to run at too fast a pace especially in long races. Only doing it as it is one of the iconic races to do.
    I'd love to get around in under 4 hrs but won't be holding my breath.
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  8. #7758
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    Quote Originally Posted by MattPo View Post
    Great effort Llani, taking in some of Mid Wales finest scenery. Love the Llanymawddwy Valley. Have you ever been up to the source of the Dyfi?
    Thanks Matt. No I haven't but like AK have viewed it from the Arans and have dropped off the ridge through Drws Bach (little door) to Drysgol and down into Cwm Cywarch. That was over 30 years ago so a return visit is overdue.

    As we are in that area I have never been able to fathom why Llanymawddwy and Dinas Mawddwy are in the Dyfi valley and not the Mawddach!

    Whilst in Llani I called into Talerddig Bakery shop for some Chelsea Buns. Speaking to the owner she told me that when the bakery closed in Talerddig all the shops were sold off and hers is now the only one with that name which she intends to keep. All the baking is now done in Tywyn and over the border in Wem. The recipes are the same for many items including the Chelsea's which are delicious
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  9. #7759
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    Quote Originally Posted by Llani Boy View Post

    As we are in that area I have never been able to fathom why Llanymawddwy and Dinas Mawddwy are in the Dyfi valley and not the Mawddach!
    A long time ago, when the people from the dinas and the llan walked to their nearest market town, Dolgellau, they were so strong and fit that they didn't even notice that they had walked over a bwlch into a different valley.
    In his lifetime he suffered from unreality, as do so many Englishmen.
    Jorge Luis Borges

  10. #7760
    Quote Originally Posted by Marco View Post
    The forecast heavy rain arrived, so I repaired the two punctured inner-tubes and looked at the blown out one. This is what the valve looked like before I took the inner-tube out



    As it definitely had something rattling inside, I cut open, (to grievous personal discomfort as it was a top end Continental one), the inner-tube and this is what I found



    The metal part to the left is the bottom, working part, of the Presta valve and is 16mm long. Worryingly, the top part, which will be at least this long, is missing. No doubt I will put my foot on it at some time when I haven't put anything on my feet
    Interesting!
    "...as dry as the Atacama desert".

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