Author Topic: Rides 2021 +++ Add yours here +++  (Read 14130 times)

PH

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Re: Rides 2021 +++ Add yours here +++
« Reply #45 on: May 14, 2021, 08:28:59 AM »
My final daily tour 2021  :'( :'( :'(
Steve
Looks great, I'm sad for you Steve.
I bought my first Thorn for a similar daily tour, at least the middle 8 miles out of 14, I thought I'd get bored with it, but in four years I never did and missed it when the business closed or I'd still be doing it.

steve216c

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Re: Rides 2021 +++ Add yours here +++
« Reply #46 on: May 14, 2021, 11:44:39 AM »
The recent stream of photos of forests and flowing waters, even the freezing ones, have been most welcome to those of us -- I'm sure there must be more than me -- sitting inside waiting for our vaccinations. I've said in the past that we can't go everywhere, so these posts are vicarious tours for those who live elsewhere. That has proven even more true in the last two years. I count myself fortunate to know you fellows -- and your cameras!

At stricter lockdown times, my employer was happy to have a volunteer who wanted to come to the office- if only to check the network or collect the mail. So I would have been exempt on my bike route to/from work. And I'm also lucky enough to have since  been fully vaccinated- even though that doesn't change much on a practical scale right now for me. Classified as medically vulnerable, the whole pandemic has been a bit of a balancing act of risks for me. I need to exercise but am inherently lazy when it comes to doing sport for sport's sake. So asking my employer to expect me to be the one who comes in (despite health issues) has given me the pressure to ride every day which is critical to my general health and long term recovery. I know I could ride on home office days. But my 'Schweinehund' will always find me non active alternatives. So coming to work gets me legitimately out of the house- and the tiny number of people in our office buildings means I hardly see a soul when actually at work.

Glad to share those photos. My 2nd day in new office, and still not inspired by my new route to work as I can never get far from the traffic it seems. But first meeting in old office location next week already, so something to look forward to  ;D
If only my bike shed were bigger on the inside...

PH

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Re: Rides 2021 +++ Add yours here +++
« Reply #47 on: May 28, 2021, 01:56:59 PM »
Nearly half way through the year and I've managed my first days away by bike!  A short home to home tour of what is IMO an often-underrated part of the UK, the East Midland and its East coast.  OK, it isnít as dramatically scenic as many other areas, but it makes up for that by having many picturesque quiet roads and a decent network of off-road routes. My touring seems to naturally fall into one of two types Ė Either a riding tour, where itís mostly about the cycling and most sightseeing is done from the saddle, or a sightseeing tour where cycling becomes a means to tour between the sights. 
This one was like the mural says
Ride hard by Paul, on Flickr

Day One
I live near the river Trent, the UKís third longest river and the plan for day one was to link all the place names ďUponĒ and ďOnĒ the river starting from home (Thereís several others South of here, they can wait for another day!) Bit of a damp day, but I luckily managed to miss the worst of the rain.  Mostly quiet roads, though I took a different route into Nottingham, which made a change to the usual, though the last few miles were more urban. 
trent-1 by Paul, on Flickr
Although I was following the Trent names, I wasnít often in sight of the river (Iíve done that one before) Itís not easy to get photos of the river without a line of pylons!  Itís no surprise, this area was at one time known as Megawatt Valley, itís proximity to the UKís major coalfields is one of the reasons that gives the area itís industrial heritage.  And many of the cycle tracks were at one time coal carrying rail lines.
Sunny Trent by Paul, on Flickr


The day ended on the outskirts of Scunthorpe, in a bargain Premier Inn Hotel, somewhere bikes are always welcome. 105 miles of which 25 were off road, mostly well surfaced, though some a little less so.
Sustrans roue by Paul, on Flickr

Day Two
Not so lucky with the weather today, never hard rain, but a persistent drizzle for most of it.  Tonightís accommodation was only a forty mile ride on a direct route, but Iíd planed a trip to the coast on the way.  It was a temptation to take the easy option, but I knew Iíd end up sat in the hotel with regrets.  It turned out to be a splendid ride despite the weather.  Crossing the Lincolnshire Wolds (Twice) was tougher than I was expecting, though I say that every time I do it!  However, I rode through mile after mile of fantastic forestry that I just wasnít expecting and plenty of almost deserted roads.  The one frustration was the number of cross roads at the bottom of hills before climbing the other side, but thatís being picky!  Reached the Lincolnshire coast at Mablethorpe and followed it for about ten miles before heading back inland
Empty beach by Paul, on Flickr

The second crossing of the Wolds was into the rain, which required frequent glasses cleaning stops despite wearing a cap.    I joined the excellent Witham River cycle path in Bardney for an easy 10 mile finish in Lincoln, where another welcoming Premier Inn awaited. 106 miles with all but those last ten on road, but miles of it without seeing any other vehicle.
Quiet roads by Paul, on Flickr

Day three
Lincoln to Derby is around 60 miles, Iíve done it several times, usually as a return, often enough that I think Iíve covered all the direct options. So, to make a change Ė head off in the opposite direction!  I retraced a little of yesterdays route, then carried on along the river path to Woodhall Spa, before crossing my favourite Fen, the featureless nature of which is the feature.  The wind direction can make this a pain or pleasure though today was somewhere between.  The rain had cleared though the promised sunshine had yet to appear.
Favorite Fen by Paul, on Flickr

From here on, I was on and off familiar roads, the rolling countryside between Grantham and Melton.  The sun had at last broken through and was very welcome, even my shoes dried out.
another good bench by Paul, on Flickr

I had planned to return via Loughborough, which gives a very easy last twenty miles, but found myself on a road busier than I was expecting (Iíd only ridden it before on a Sunday) so I cut North and used a well known shorter (Though not as flat) route.
100 miles to home where a cold beer awaited me (OK, I did have to detour through the park to avoid it being 99 miles!)
............................................
What can I say about the bike? I didnít give it a single thought from start to finish, which is just how it should be.  Though itís now in need of a good clean!

The planned routes, if anyone is interested, though they don't include a couple of detours, intended and otherwise!

https://cycle.travel/map/journey/223815
https://cycle.travel/map/journey/223814
https://cycle.travel/map/journey/223816




« Last Edit: May 28, 2021, 02:03:22 PM by PH »

Andre Jute

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Re: Rides 2021 +++ Add yours here +++
« Reply #48 on: May 29, 2021, 12:40:24 AM »
Thanks for the detailed report, Paul, and the super photographs.

Today the waiting period after my second COVID-19 injection ended, and tomorrow I'm servicing my bike which has been standing unridden since I discovered the mask mercilessly steamed up my spectacles whatever I tried. But I'll change the oil and the grease in the klickbox anyway. A few painting expeditions by bicycle before spring turns to high summer seems a good way to get back into the swing of regular cycling. 16C forecasts with clouds and a few showers, but if one concentrates on the 16C...

energyman

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Re: Rides 2021 +++ Add yours here +++
« Reply #49 on: May 29, 2021, 07:08:55 PM »
Yes Timberland Fen is the good one as long as there is an easterly wind !
Next time you pass through Bardney try the sausage rolls from the Butcher on the corner.

PH

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Re: Rides 2021 +++ Add yours here +++
« Reply #50 on: June 05, 2021, 12:36:07 PM »
On and Upon the Trent part 2.
Joey by Paul, on Flickr
I don't usually post my non Thorn riding, but as this a continuation of the above, here goes even though it's on my Airnimal Joey.
The Trent South of Derby has three "on" and "upon" places, Stoke on, Walton on, Burton upon.  I used the Joey to take the train to Stoke, which was also the first opportunity to use my new Senior Railcard :)  The Trent and Mersey canal passes alongside the railway station, so I didn't see much of Stoke.  The canal path starts out a bit slow, Tarmac broken up by tree roots, but it soon settled into a lovely route, reasonable well surfaces and so pretty, with many stretches tree lined.
T&M Stoke by Paul, on Flickr

I left the canal after about ten miles, just before Stone, but not before observing the cows drinking from it, but they can only do so as a boat passes by and the wave raising the level.
Cows on the canal by Paul, on Flickr

The objective was to visit the place names, rather than follow the river, it's forty miles between the first and second, a lot longer if you follow the meandering river.  I cut across some rolling countryside, often within sight of Cannock Chase, but not visiting it on this trip.  Very rural, with either grass or gravel up the centre of most lanes, long stretches without seeing a car. I called into Cobwebs cafe on the outskirts of Abbots Bromley and treated myself to the most indulgent cake on offer, chocolate and orange :o
Cobwebs cake by Paul, on Flickr

By now I'm back on home turf, another dozen rural miles and a bit of B road, through Barton Marina, over a bridge built as a temporary structure about forty years ago and through Walton on Trent. Alongside the Trent to Burton upon, where I got probably the best view of the river over both rides.  Burton is renowned for it's beer brewing (And Marmite from the waste!) the distinctive taste (Beer not Marmite) is attributed to the Trent water. 
Burton Trent by Paul, on Flickr

I used to commute the 14 miles between Burton and home, it was the reason I first bought a Thorn, the trip has several variations, and the option of a train! Just like after the end of a long shift I considered them all, and chose the easiest!! A short stretch of the same Trent and Mersey canal, a dirty cyclepath alongside the A38, through a couple of villages and back home. 
60ish miles, a lovely day awheel, I now have a full set of Trent place names and am considering the Avon or Severn for a similar theme. I don't think I've ever used the train like that before, for a day ride, now the railcard makes it cheaper I'm likely to do more of that.

Route here is anyone is interested
https://cycle.travel/map/journey/222554
« Last Edit: June 05, 2021, 12:42:55 PM by PH »

Andre Jute

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Re: Rides 2021 +++ Add yours here +++
« Reply #51 on: June 05, 2021, 09:47:17 PM »
Super ride -- and photos! -- through what ye olde rural England must once have looked like.

Matt2matt2002

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Re: Rides 2021 +++ Add yours here +++
« Reply #52 on: June 06, 2021, 01:37:49 PM »
Nice pictures and trip details.
May I ask how pictures are inserted within the text.
https://www.flickr.com/photos/13435413@N00/51342799197/in/album-72157719607092304/
Mine usually appear at the end.
https://www.flickr.com/photos/13435413@N00/51342799197/in/album-72157719607092304/

Best

https://www.flickr.com/photos/13435413@N00/51342799197/in/album-72157719607092304/
Matt

Trying out instructions for posting a hyper-link picture from Flikr.
In prep for next tour blog.
« Last Edit: July 29, 2021, 08:18:44 PM by Matt2matt2002 »
Never drink and drive. You may hit a bump  and spill your drink

PH

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Re: Rides 2021 +++ Add yours here +++
« Reply #53 on: June 06, 2021, 01:54:42 PM »
Nice pictures and trip details.
May I ask how pictures are inserted within the text.
Mine usually appear at the end.

Best
Matt
Thanks.
My photos are hosted on Flickr rather than uploaded here, what you see is a link.  Details in this thread
http://thorncyclesforum.co.uk/index.php?topic=4313.0

If this was the only place I wanted the photos displayed, I'd just upload here.  But if you want to show them elsewhere, it's easier to have them hosted in one location, I use Flickr (The free version), but there's other options including Google images.

Matt2matt2002

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Re: Rides 2021 +++ Add yours here +++
« Reply #54 on: June 06, 2021, 02:11:36 PM »
Nice pictures and trip details.
May I ask how pictures are inserted within the text.
Mine usually appear at the end.

Best
Matt
Thanks.
My photos are hosted on Flickr rather than uploaded here, what you see is a link.  Details in this thread
http://thorncyclesforum.co.uk/index.php?topic=4313.0

If this was the only place I wanted the photos displayed, I'd just upload here.  But if you want to show them elsewhere, it's easier to have them hosted in one location, I use Flickr (The free version), but there's other options including Google images.
Thanks. I think I have a Flika account. I'll check it out.

Best
Matt
Never drink and drive. You may hit a bump  and spill your drink

John Saxby

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Re: Rides 2021 +++ Add yours here +++
« Reply #55 on: June 12, 2021, 05:50:19 PM »
Early June, and only yesterday did I finally manage to get across the river and into the trees and eventually, to Champlain Lookout in the Gatineau Hills.  Champlain is my usual turnaround for a 3-to-4-hour ride from home in Ottawa, the time required and degree-of-difficulty (i.e., hills) depending on which of several routes I take.

As a rule, I make this ride a month earlier. This year, all sorts of things conspired to delay me--travel restrictions 'cos of COVID, a lot of pressure on my time because of commitments to domestic and civic life, and to friends in need.  And, unseemly behaviour by the weather gods: last week, for example, we had several consecutive days with the humidex at 40 and above. That's dangerous territory, and a reminder that Ottawa's latitude is just a couple of degrees north of the south of France. Our climate regularly reminds us that there's a swing of 60-plus degrees between midwinter and midsummer.

But 'nuf of excuses and grumbles -- no one's listening, anyway.  We had a glorious early-summer day, temps in the mid-20's, low humidity and a light breeze, bright sunshine and a scattering of clouds. And, no motor traffic in Gatineau park. Cars 'n' such are allowed on Wed-Sat-Sun afternoons, but on a Friday, I met only walkers, joggers, and several dozen cyclists.

The woods have their full canopy now, so the ride up was full of green and gold and dappled shadow on the empty roads.  The fifty shades of green are still fresh, despite six weeks of very little rain. (May was the driest month on record, less than 12 mm.) The woods are tinder-dry on the forest floor, seasonal streams no longer exist, and even permanent ones are inaudible, reduced to just a collection of stagnant pools.

But on days like this, even roadside trees and rocks are delightful -- see photo #1 below.

Last year's ponds are this year's marshes, so a lot of lakes and their inhabitants are suffering.  Their sometimes-odd names are unchanged, however.  I've often wondered what lies behind the name in photo#2:  Would that be le grand bourgeois? Or the petty variant? Neither name is very complimentary, though, so perhaps an early settler named the lake so's to discourage nearby neighbours. This address wouldn't have the same cachet as, say, Silver Lake or Paradise Lake.

At Champlain Lookout, the summit 300m and change above sea level, the retaining wall had been rebuilt last year (the Ottawa Valley is an earthquake zone, so the tectonic plates rearrange things now and then) and had a crowd of 3 other cyclists. So, there was plenty of space to lean Osi against the wall, eat an orange, and admire the view.  I never tire of this view. It's our great privilege, never to be taken for granted.  It's constant, but always varies with the season and the time of day.

Just above Osi's saddle in photo #3, looking slightly NW, you see the bend in the river where the Ottawa turns abruptly west from the big north-south reach-cum-lac des ChÍnes which begins on the western flank of the city.  Roy Macgregor's book, "Original Highways", reminds us that the Ottawa was once, and for a long time, a highway to the interior of the continent.  Photo #4 is a view more-or-less due W. On the Quťbec side in the foreground are fields, farms and woodlots; across the river on the Ontario side, the blue haze obscures more of the same, as well as lower hills which are also less rocky than the escarpment from which these photos are taken.

So, a little hint of sorta-normal times.

I'll be doing this ride more frequently as the summer unfolds, I hope: I'm still a gear lower on my Rohloff on the slight inclines, and one or two lower on the steeper hills.

Not much wildlife in evidence on this ride, except for dozens, probably hundreds of dragonflies, bless 'em.  These are a paddler's friend, 'cos they feed on horseflies.  Seeing them near my front wheel as I climbed up to the Lookout, I figured I'd find a few horseflies at the top.  Indeed they were there, the brutes; but happily, no more than 2 or 3, 'cos the dragonflies were doing what dragonflies do.  :)

Matt2matt2002

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Re: Rides 2021 +++ Add yours here +++
« Reply #56 on: June 12, 2021, 06:35:48 PM »
Nice ride report, John. Lots of interesting info.
Canada is still on my to do list but no sign of long term Covid improvement here. Plenty of 3 steps forward, 2 steps back.
I must write up my recent 3 day mini tour north of Inverness.
No excuses now.

Best
Matt


Never drink and drive. You may hit a bump  and spill your drink

Andre Jute

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Re: Rides 2021 +++ Add yours here +++
« Reply #57 on: June 12, 2021, 07:54:49 PM »
Another splendid ride report, John. You must have been an excellent teacher, so observant, so comprehensible, such persuasive details.

I think bourgeois was an aspirational term until Marx arrived to befoul the language with dialectics. Emile Zola was probably the first important and at least semi-respectable intellectual to turn on the bourgeoisie. It's very bad economics because history teaches that the largest possible bourgeois class is the main creator and guarantor of the social stability that percolates wealth downwards.

Yo, Matt, like you say, no excuses!

PH

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Re: Rides 2021 +++ Add yours here +++
« Reply #58 on: June 12, 2021, 08:23:05 PM »
Interesting report John, Sounds a great day out, particularly the lack of traffic!
I think bourgeoisie originally had something to do with where you lived rather that what you were, though the two may be linked. Within the town walls, or something like that.
 

John Saxby

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Re: Rides 2021 +++ Add yours here +++
« Reply #59 on: June 12, 2021, 10:01:22 PM »
Thanks, Matt.  You're always welcome!

Andre thanks for your kind words, Andre. Andre and Phil, as for the little riff on Lac Bourgeois -- my sometime nickname is Wind 'Em Up, Sax.  ;)

I didn't get round to thanking you for your Trent River ride, Phil.  I grew up near the Trent River in Ontario.  It runs N to S, draining into L Ontario just west of Kingston.  Not a very long river, about 150 kms, but it drains a very large watershed.  And, it's one end of the Trent-Severn Waterway, a canal system that runs from Trenton (mouth of the Trent) all the way northwest to Port Severn on Georgian Bay. It includes the Peterborough Hydraulic Lift Lock, a splendid device; and Trent University, splashed by the Otonabee River, part of the Trent system.

Well worth a trip by boat or bike.  Camping at lock stations is just $5 a night.