First time out on the road bike on my own, on a ride longer than a quick 30 mins around Glossopdale. I now have a pump holder on the bike, a bottle cage and bottle, and a t-shirt with pockets in the back where I can stash my Kendal mint cake and other sundries.
I have to say that I set off with not a little trepedation, I've no idea why, I'm perfectly capable and happy wandering off to the midst of no-where with a mountain bike, but this whole road malarky scared me a bit.
The climb up Snake was fine, just a bit of a long drag, no issues at all. Apart from the hail, but that just added a little bit of character to the hill...
Coming off snake, I wasn't prepared for just how damn long the descent is. I've been over there in a car a few times, but when you're on a bike, it just goes on and on, but its not a descent that you can just cruise down, I pedalled and pedalled and pedalled, the road surface just wasn't very fast, and I was almost giving more on the descent than I was on the ascent.
Eventually I came out on the otherside over by the reservoirs, and hung a right, down through Bamford and along to Hope. It had taken me an hour up until this point, and really I didn't need to stop, but as this was the first ride out like this, and I knew Winnats was coming up, I stopped in The Woodbine Cafe for a cup of tea with a load of sugar in it, and a slice of Rockt Road.
Much needed refreshment.
After a quick chat with the staff, and also some of the staff from the Poachers from down the road, (waiting for the second hail shower to pass...) I set off on my way back home.
Winnats was a total an utter horror fest. I've been down that hill on a mountain bike before, but only up it in a car. A 1 in 5 ascent, and those of you that live around here and have biked up it. Respect.
I tried to do it in a one-er but had to stop about 3/4 of the way up for a short break and a drink of water before carrying on. Although I stopped, I did NOT walk.
Carrying on back over to Chapel-en-le-frith was lovely, the road was clear and after the struggle up Winnats, it felt like a breeze, back down through Chapel and into Chinley- where it really hit. My bum hurt, my legs were screaming, I didn't have enough gears, and I certainly didn't have anything in my legs. I contemplated sitting down by the side of the road and calling out back-up with a car.
tcha. so I MTFU'd and carried on, up and down the undulations, grinding out the miles, past Hayfield, up the hill into Little Hayfield, up the hill and over past the Grouse, and back down to home.
Crikey, I'm quite tired.
57 and a bit km over 2 and a half hours or so. Not bad for a first effort, but certainly something I can improve on.
This is the link to the route