This Friday just gone I set out with about 70 of my colleagues to tackle a cycling route that took in all the best that the Yorkshire Dales had to offer. Some of you may remember me saying in a previous post that I had done little to no cycling in the run up to this sportive I had signed myself up to. The good news is… I survived… just!
That was me just after lunch, about 50km in, it had just started raining at this point, ha, not impressed.
We got to the Strid Tea Rooms just past Bolton Abbey for around 9am on Friday morning and the organisers had put on a load of bacon sarnies and coffee etc that we could all get stuck into pre-ride. Time to fill up the tank… Everyone was buzzing and there were mechanics on-hand to help pump tyres up, tweak helmets and what-not. A few words were said from Mr Flint and off we went, up into the Dales.
I am relatively familiar with the area as my Grandparents used to take us out for dinner quite regularly on Sundays and we’d often take the long scenic routes round so my Grandad could bore us all with his stories from his cycling days – bless him.
Anyway, the theme of the day was: hills. Lots of f**king hills. And steep hills at that! Greenhow Hill (apparently world famous?) was the first real order of the day which everyone managed to battle up pretty well given the conditions – we had a coffee stop at Stump Cross Caverns just after the climb where we were met with a much needed flapjack and a fresh coffee! Perfect! It’s alright, this cycling lark.
Up and down a few more hills and it was soon lunch time. We stopped at The Timble Inn – another one of my grandparents’ favourites – for a BBQ and plenty of rehydration, in the form of more coffee and juice I might add, no not beer! Tank fuelled up once more it was time to crack on and chalk off the last 40km.
After a greasy and hairy descent down Norwood Edge back into Otley it was pretty much a social ride back through Ilkley and along the Wharfe to Bolton Abbey. All in all I was in the saddle about 5 hours:
Here is a link to the full activity on Strava if you want to check it out!
Back to the running for the foreseeable…