Chew Valley Revisited.

Despite forecasts of rain for Easter Monday it actually turned out to be nice and dry, and better weather than Good Friday. Ian rang about 9:40 and suggested another trip to Chew Valley, so about 10:30ish I finally headed out of the door. We took the same route down to the lake as normal, but this time I’d worked out where we went wrong on Friday and had plotted a better route back. After the usual cake and pot of tea we headed home, the new route back was almost perfect, a lot less climbing than the old route, and actually a mile or two shorter for me. 33.5 miles in almost perfect riding weather.

I’m still very impressed with the Lemond, the last two longer rides on it have been very good, I’ve been able to get off the bike after 40 miles or so with no aches at all other than tired legs.

Easter passed relatively quietly. Saturday was spent chopping down a 20′ tree in my parents garden, and Sunday mainly revolved around lunch at my parents and an easter egg hunt for Ethan. The only downside is I have to go back to work tomorrow after 10 days off, no doubt that’ll be a major shock to the system as I’ve got quite used to leading a life of leisure over the last week or so.

Good Friday. Great Ride.

Today was the first Chew Valley Lake ride of the year. I left the house about 9:15 and headed out to Timsbury to collect Ian. By 10am we were on our way out of Timsbury on almost matching Lemond bikes, and 45 minutes later were sat down at Chew Valley tucking into tea and cakes. We decided to take a slighlty different route home and followed National Cycle Route 3 which in theory should have led us back to Saltford, however there must be more than one route 3 as we ended up in Bristol. To be honest it was actually a better route back as it missed out a couple of steep hills, replacing them with a couple of more gentle ones.

The weather was almost perfect for riding, starting out nice and cool, but warming nicely by the time I got back into Bath after 40 miles.

Fettling

Yet another nice relaxing day today. I just pottered around doing a few odd jobs like cleaning and relubing the chain on a couple of bikes, cleaning the front and rear house windows and doors (they are now white instead of black), and most important of all, sorting out my innertube collection into boxes labelled "road", "crosser", "mtb", and "punctured". I discovered that for the last couple of months worth of road rides I’d been carrying a tube with a nice big hole in it. Not the most useful of things to carry, but at least I’ve got about 10 new ones to work through now.

Film night

Partly prompted by The DVD Collection on BBC4, I finally got around to ordering a couple of DVDs I’d been after for a while. They arrived today and I sat down and watched them back-to-back aided by a nice bottle of red.

The films in question: Smoke and it’s follow-up Blue in the Face. Highly recommended if you like that sort of thing.

Cheeky Woods

The big advantage of being off work is that you can get up when you want, don’t need to get dressed properly, and can go riding when the mood takes you. After a late breakfast and plenty of lounging around I headed out on the cross bike and decided to ride up a few hills. I did a route I’ve not done for quite a long time and part way round had a potter round some woods looking for anything interesting, there seems to be plenty of potential in there for fun. I ended up doing 19 miles in the end.

Non-news

Local newspapers usually dredge the bottom of the barrel to find so-called "news" with which to fill their pages. One of the stories in todays local paper is about how Bath is attracting a record number of requests to film in the city. Apparently there are usually 250 requests per year, and so far this year there have been 55 request. A quick bit of maths reveals that if the requests continue at the same rate for the rest of the year, they’ll hit the dizzy heights of 251. So where was the news then?

A few pictures from yesterdays Bath Half Marathon.

Spring is in the air.

It was an unseasonally nice day today, so I took the opportunity to fit in a quick hour on the road bike before lunch. The more I ride the Lemond, the more I’m impressed with it. The cranks and bottom bracket area are fantastically stiff giving an almost perfect pedalling platform, but the frame is still nice and compliant and does a fantastic job of smoothing out the numerous imperfections of the local roads. Admittedly it’s the only "decent" road bike I’ve ridden for more than a couple of miles, but I can’t really fault it at the moment. I’m toying with getting some proper road pedals for the bike to replace the MTB ones on there at the moment, but my propensity for walking up steep hills means the MTB pedals are probably a better choice as the cleats tend to be recessed on the shoes making engaging the 24" gear a more comfortable proposition. I shall no doubt get disowned for even contemplating walking up a hill when riding a road bike, but as I already wear MTB-style kit while riding I’m used to being shunned.

Tomorrow I’ll be handing out Lucozade to the participants of the Bath Half-Marathon, and trying not to get drenched in the stuff. It’s also Dad’s birthday, so happy birthday to him for tomorrow.

Treasurers vs Housing Admin

Combe Down RFC isn’t a particularly high-scoring alley, so after two legs in the mid-thirties it was 1-1. We soon picked up into the mid to low forties, and eventually took the match 5-2 with a 12-spare in the last leg by yours truely.

Treasurers took 2 points, Housing Admin took 8.

So far this season we have played 20 games, won 14 and lost 6.