Author Topic: Rides 2021 +++ Add yours here +++  (Read 1780 times)

Matt2matt2002

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Re: Rides 2021 +++ Add yours here +++
« Reply #30 on: April 10, 2021, 07:18:00 PM »
Reino de EspaŮa.
But not at all hopeful for any foreign travel given worldwide figures. Too many reoccurring waves.
But fingers crossed.

As Woody Allen said,
If you want to make God laugh, tell him your plans.

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 #31 on: April 10, 2021, 11:47:48 PM »
As Woody Allen said,
If you want to make God laugh, tell him your plans.

I always thought Woody Allen's best line was, "God, could you please choose someone else!"
« Last Edit: May 04, 2021, 10:20:18 PM by Andre Jute »

John Saxby

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Re: Rides 2021 +++ Add yours here +++
« Reply #32 on: May 04, 2021, 10:05:50 PM »
We've had slim pickings for springtime rides so far. April started out warm-to-hot, and I managed a ride up into the hills across the Ottawa River, just a couple of hours, but enough to see the woods were dry as tinder after an early spring. And enough to remind myself that between COVID restrictions and my arthritic hip, I'd done precious little cardio work over the winter. (Memo to self: get a trainer bike for next winter, and/or suck it up and do some more serious X-country skiing.)

Then, in mid-April the viral variants asserted themselves, and the Ontario gvt closed the borders with Quťbec and Manitoba. (The latter is of less importance to me than the former, 'cos Kenora in northwestern Ontario, about 50 kms from the border, is some 2,000 kms from my front door: https://tinyurl.com/sn7zdnzp. OTOH, Quťbec is about 10-15 minutes away by bike.)

So, one does what one can, and in the past two weeks, I've made some enjoyable  3-hour rides westwards and eastwards along the bikepaths beside the big river on the Ottawa side.  There are few hills, as one would expect, but brisk northwesterly winds ensure at least and hour and a half into a headwind on any such trip.  The Ottawa Valley runs more or less East-West on either side of Ottawa, and creates a venturi effect for any northwesterly.  As the days warm up, the higher pressures means serious gusts in the mid-to-late afternoons -- 60-plus kms are not uncommon.

Below, a few photos from recent rides. The first two show early spring foliage, a roadside forsythia bush, and a willow tree blowin' in the wind. (Willows are not common in pur northern landscape -- this, and the forsythia, are planted by gardeners.)  The last three are from a ride eastwards to town, beside the river behind Parliament, across the locks of the Rideau Canal, and eastwards along a gravel walking and cycling riverside path.

The staircase of locks you see in photo 3 is an uncommon view:  In the winter, it's full of snow and ice, and in the summer and most of the fall, it's full of water.  This view is taken from the walkway between Lock #1 behind me, and Lock #2 in front. (There are 8 in all.) You cross a lock via a walkway atop its wooden gates, which, er, have to be closed.  Heroic types carry their bikes, but I don't:  the walkway is a little more than  24 inches wide, and the steel railings on each side require that you either push your bike ahead of you, or hoist it above your shoulders.  A misstep, and your precious Thorn goes into the drink.

The Canal runs north-south between Parliament Hill to the west, and the Chateau Laurier hotel to the east.  The Chateau, shown in photo 4, was one of a series of railway hotels across Canada.  It's a Tinkerbell-like landmark in town, and we're very fond of it.  It's been more than a hotel: the Karsh brothers had their photographic studios in it (dunno if Yusuf's famous portraits of Hemingway and Churchill were taken here), and for many years the local CBC station broadcast from the Chateau.  Its ballroom has been used for things other than what you might expect: years back, I heard Muddy Waters and John Lee Hooker in the same bluesy evening.

It's now owned by a Soulless Furrin Conglomerate (sold, as is the pattern, by its Wishy-washy Canajan Conglomerate Predecessor) which is planning to build a giant parking garage on the back, a cross between a filing cabinet and a shipping container. I will not be taking any photos of that.
« Last Edit: May 04, 2021, 10:14:32 PM by John Saxby »

John Saxby

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Re: Rides 2021 +++ Add yours here +++
« Reply #33 on: May 04, 2021, 10:13:34 PM »
And the three remaining photos:

Andre Jute

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Re: Rides 2021 +++ Add yours here +++
« Reply #34 on: May 04, 2021, 10:32:56 PM »
Love your travelogue, John. The attention to detail...

While the strongest photograph here is of the series of locks repeating almost to the horizon, with the bizarre Chateau Laurier looming beside the industrial age artefact, the one that bring a sympathetic tear to the eye is of the willows whipping in the wind. That sky is just amazing: it tells you the winter isn't releasing its grip yet.

Danneaux

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Re: Rides 2021 +++ Add yours here +++
« Reply #35 on: May 04, 2021, 11:34:39 PM »
So enjoyable to see, John, and Osi looks simply grand!

Thanks for sharing.

Best,

Dan.

John Saxby

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Re: Rides 2021 +++ Add yours here +++
« Reply #36 on: May 05, 2021, 03:12:18 AM »
Thanks for your kind words, fellas.

Andre, those willows tell of a fierce northwesterly: My there'n'back on that day was out to the little village of Carp, past that log farmhouse I photographed last autumn.  Total distance was about 52 kms. The outbound 26 took me about an hour & 40 mins, the return about one hour ten.

That cobalt sky is what we get with high-pressure low-humidity days, the wind typically from the northwest, occasionally the north.  I call it "Saskatchewan weather".  It's more manageable in the summer than in the winter.

One thing that doesn't stand out from these photos is how low is the level of the big river -- at least a couple of metres below where it normally would be at this time of year. The snowpack was relatively low further upstream, and both March and April have been quite dry.  On my ride up into the hills in early April, the seasonal streams were nearly dry, and even permanent ones were low.

Strange times.

Andre Jute

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Re: Rides 2021 +++ Add yours here +++
« Reply #37 on: May 05, 2021, 09:00:59 AM »
I remember the log farmhouse, on a calmer day, a rural idyll.


Rouleur834

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Re: Rides 2021 +++ Add yours here +++
« Reply #38 on: May 06, 2021, 09:39:32 AM »
A river genuinely that big only looks placid. Underneath it surely has rippling muscles. I also see in several of the photos a nasty little wind chopping up the surface: not a day for dinghy sailing.

Compare "the Mighty Torrens" in Adelaide in South Australia: it has a whopping great weir across it upriver, just out of sight from the Festival Centre's expansive plaza, so that a rather insignificant stream is suddenly a fairly impressive river (by Australian standards, not Canadian). Mind you, the Lee, which most international cycle tourers will tell you is a largish river in which Cork City zentral makes up two long islands and which at Cobh Harbour is a big estuary, to serious local cyclists is more notable for its origins among pretty and easy-cycling back roads within striking distance of a far (by Irish standards!) shore, where it is a fingerling you can step over without noticing the origin of a famous river unless someone tells you or you're paying close attention to topographical lines on the map.

A beautiful Spring day. A quick spin, 23 mile round trip, this morning along the flatlands of the Severn Vale north to Sharpness Dock to witness one of the highest tides of the year here at 10.36m at 10:03 am and grab a photo to compare with one at low tide (about 0.5m).
About 45 minutes earlier at Avonmouth Docks roughly 16 miles SW downstream, high tide was at 14.17 metres from a low of 5m.
Pleasantly surprised to find an Irish cargo ship coming upstream to enter the dock between the two wooden piers and then through the lock into the dock basin.
No coffee or cake today🙁

Photo 1 low water at Sharpness Dock 0.51m
Photo 2 Arklow Faith arrival 10 minutes before high tide
Photo 3 High Tide (Slack water( at 10.36m.

Snap-ish!

PH

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Re: Rides 2021 +++ Add yours here +++
« Reply #39 on: May 07, 2021, 03:03:12 PM »
Iím still to get away cycling, had a car based camping night last week, just in time for the weather to change, but enjoyable none the less.
Iím out most days on the bike for one mundane reason or another, so have been struggling to find the motivation to get out when I donít need to.  Iíve missed group riding far more than Iíd expected to, so glad thatís restarting, though the restrictions still make it a faff, hopefully we can return to normality sometime soon.
Other than that, yesterday was my first decent ride of any length this year and Iím feeling it today.  I took a trip up to Clumber Park, in the heart of the Dukeries, an area of the UK where all the Dukes use to have estates for hunting and other aristocratic pleasures.  The most well-known is probably Sherwood Forrest, thought thereís plenty around it and it isnít always possible to tell where one estate ends and another starts.  The ride up was fairly hilly, up through some of the Notts ex-mining towns and villages, now either sprawling industrial/warehouse estates or desolate, Iím not sure which is worse, but then I donít live there.  Then into increasingly empty rolling countryside, on some lovely quite lanes, before reaching Clumber Park, now a NT property.  Iíve been through this park maybe a dozen times, either on my way to/from somewhere else or an Audax.  This was the first time Iíve made it a destination and I wish Iíd had more time there, itís huge (3,800 acres, according to google) and criss-crossed with so many paths and bridleways that despite how full the car park looked it felt empty. The park covers an area either side of the river Poulter, which expands into a lake in the heart of it, Iím not sure if thatís natural or has been engineered.  I rode up one side and down the other, all on paths clearly marked as permittable by bike, and mostly decent quality, though slow going in places. I had a couple of hours there and could easily have spent longer, I may look for a local campsite and spend a day exploring sometime.
The ride back was deliberately less hilly than the ride there, though I hadnít accounted for the headwind, so was actually slower!  I dropped down to Southwell, which has a magnificent Minster, though I didnít dwell as it features in some future plans when Cycling UK launch the Cathedral routes later this month.  I then followed the river Trent all the way home,, mostly on a route I know well, though apart from the last few miles havenít ridden in a while. 
Some obligatory bike photos, three from Clumber and one of the Trent on the way home.

And the route if anyoneís interested
https://cycle.travel/map/journey/218625
And the park info
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Clumber_Park

Clumber tree by Paul, on Flickr

Clumber bluebells by Paul, on Flickr

Clumber by Paul, on Flickr

Trent by Paul, on Flickr
« Last Edit: May 07, 2021, 03:06:14 PM by PH »

in4

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Re: Rides 2021 +++ Add yours here +++
« Reply #40 on: May 07, 2021, 10:06:50 PM »
I know thereís a good ride on an old pit railway track that runs near Sherwood Forest. I used to join it at Vicar Water, Clipstone but think the track runs south to Nottingham and north to Worksop.

PH

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Re: Rides 2021 +++ Add yours here +++
« Reply #41 on: May 07, 2021, 10:25:43 PM »
I know thereís a good ride on an old pit railway track that runs near Sherwood Forest. I used to join it at Vicar Water, Clipstone but think the track runs south to Nottingham and north to Worksop.
If it's the bit I'm thinking of, it's part of NCN route 6 which starts in London and goes up to Carlisle (the route rather than that track), passing directly in front of my door along the way.  I've ridden it in two stages as far as Lancaster. There's a good selection of tracks around the mining areas, converted from what were probably pit railways, I did a couple of short sections on yesterdays ride, they're very pleasant but I wanted to make better progress.
« Last Edit: May 07, 2021, 10:31:57 PM by PH »