Tag: bike ride

Purbecks 1 Me 1

After my last thrashing when I visited the Purbeck hills I have been waiting for a return visit and today was that day. But I was not content to just try my hand at the same 5 mile trail that thrashed me last time, oh no, I bit the bullet and took on 16 miles and over 1100ft of climbing…….

I found the route over the Purbeck hills on the Internet just after I started riding again so hung onto the link, so over the weekend I decided the time had come to try it. The route includes two very large hills. I started from the Banks Arms at Studland and then made my way upto old Harry Rock, from there it on and over Ballard Down. Now this was not to bad to start with as this is a gentle climb to 523ft over 3.3 miles with some of the ride along the cliff tops over looking Studland Bay, the English Channel and Swanage Bay and I can honestly say there was only one section I walked. The views are stunning from the cliff tops around Old Harry rock (especially on a sunny day) but the view only got better as I made my way inland, looking to my right I could see Poole harbour entrance and to me left I could look down on Swanage.

As the old saying goes what goes up must come down and come down pretty quick, you drop 220ft in less than half a mile most of that in a long run down to the road. A quarter of a mile later you are looking at the bottom of 9 Barrow hill and grey rock strewn path that disappears up the side of the hill. Now this is where the Purbeck Hills gained its point as I only made it about 150yds up the path before I decided to save myself and walk, I could not compete with a path that climbs over 400ft in under a mile. So after a long walk I was at the top Of Nine Barrow, the view were stunning especially when I got to the Corfe Castle end of the hill and was looking down on the village of Corfe Castle and the remains of the castle. This is where I made my first mistake, I missed the path down to Corfe Castle and decide to find my own route down the side of the hill, not a good idea. I made it, but would of been a better idea to go back and join the correct path.

Once in Corfe Castle the route became like many other routes, running along forest tracks on the Remstone estate before meeting up with the main road back to the Banks Arms. As I headed back to the Banks Arms I remembered a little path (more like a shaded tunnel) that I took the last time I rode in the Purbeck so I shot of down the path only to be confronted by a deer. I stopped some 20ft away from it and it seemed quite happy to stand there eating the greenery while I grabbed a couple of pictures. It only decided to leave when I decide to ride on.

So all in all I think today’s ride was a fair draw, I got the better of it on most of the first climb and the remainder of the ride but I was well and truly beat on the second climb (ok more like submission).

Having seen what the traffic was like in Corfe Castle I decided that once back at the Banks Arms, it was a case of load the bike onto the car and leave.

Finally to round of the bank holiday weekend, it was weight in night tonight and it was a pound and a half off (the same pound and a half I put on last week) so I can go to bed tonight contented and tired.

The bike visits Old Harry Rock
Old Harry Rock (Old Harry is actually hidden behind the other rocks)
Corfe Castle as seen from 9 Barrow hill
Deer on path
The un-shy Deer
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its not improving…………..

Monday night weigh was another gain, I was expecting as much so was not really surprised. Just don’t seem to be able to get my head around it all at the moment.

Went out for a ride on Wednesday night on the road to get a bit of practice for Sunday, 16 miles in 70 minutes which included a couple of stops, according to the gps averaged 12mph, was reasonable happy with that.

Here one of the pictures from Saturday trip to Westward Ho!

two wheeling the buggy with no hands
Look mum no hands

The rest of the photos can be found in my gallery

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ride to forget

Went for our normal Saturday bike ride this morning, should of realised thing were not going to be straight forward, first I had left it to the wife to decide where we were going and up until 45 minutes before we were due to leave there had been no decision. So I took it upon myself to decide for her, we were going to Wareham forest but we were going to park at a different location which was basically in the middle of the loop we did the previous week. So I had to do a bit of route juggling as starting where we parked only gave us 8 miles, so I added a 3 mile loop, well at least I tried to. The GPS mapping software was not playing ball this morning. It has the facility to delete part of an existing route and then add another section of a route to it, do you think mine wanted to play this morning……….. not a cat in hells chance. I deleted the entire route three times instead deleting the section I wanted to delete. Then when I added another route to give a nice long ride rather than delete the section I wanted it deleted everything even the route saved on the hard disk. So by the time I left home I was a bear with a sore head!!

If I thought my GPS problem were over no chance, I set the route up on the GPS and clicked follow, this was OK for about the first 1000mtrs, I found that I could not scroll the screen, did not matter what I did the screen would not scroll and then I lost the follow option. Switch the GPS off, turn back on reload route, select follow and we are of again. This was not to be the last of the GPS problems.

But now I had a squeak, not from the GPS but from my front disc brake. Now this was doubly annoying as I thought I had sorted this problem out on Wednesday night, a quick adjustment and then a quick whiz round the block to check (and test the rear brakes as I changed the pads), not a sound everything seemed OK. Not now, after about another half mile I had had enough of the hamster wheel impersonations, jumped off the bike and set to work adjusting the calliper again. Thankfully this time it worked without a problem, we could now ride without my front wheel impersonating a hamster wheel.

We had now gone about a mile and a half when the wife shouts at me that her rear end does not feel right, at this point I declined the urge to comment as the problem was clearly visible………….a flat tyre. So once again we pulled over and I replaced the tube. After a short interval we are on our way again.

As I had put some new pads on the rear in the week I was making the most of any downhill section to shoot off downhill at speed and then whack the brakes on to heat the pads up, the wife asks me if I am having problems fortunately the answer was no. We finished the remainder of the loop with out a problem.

Th next 5 or so miles almost go with out a problem. I find that my water bottle is contaminated, the water tastes bloody awful, so I end up sharing the wife’s water bottle. By now we are at the far end of our route where I decide that we are going to have a little excursion off into the undergrowth as I have spotted what looks like a nice dirt track. It is now that the GPS come back to annoy me. As I had been following a route I had not noticed it had not been laying a track (as the route already on the map would hide my track) but this little excursion into the undergrowth revealed that the GPS was not tracking my route. Now this is annoying for two reason, one by having a track I have a good note of the total distance we travelled and secondly I will not have a record of this route to use in the future. By now I was beginning to give up the will to live. The dirt I found was not to bad, we were unable to follow the map exactly as the track shown on the map went into a mud pool but our little excursion brought us out half way along the route we would of been on had we followed our route and where the map showed the track would of rejoined the route.

The remainder of the ride back to the car was rather uneventful (compared to the earlier parts). As our ride had been a bit short I decided that I would check out another little dirt track that I had spotted earlier on the little loop. So I left the wife at the car and headed back up the trial, I soon found the entrance into the trees that I was looking for, I was soon to regret finding this little track. This little track through the tree (imagine a pine tree plantations with the tree all neatly planted in lines) was like dodgems with the trees and up hill with the narrow track winding it way between the trees with only a couple of inches to spare and what was worse, I was stuck in high gear. There was no straight section of track I just could not get any speed to change down on the front chain ring. I came to a mud pool where I got off the bike and pushed my way through as there was no way I could ride through it, I carried on pushing up the hill on the other side, I reached the top of the hill wheezing like an unfit 50 year old (mmm, I fit that description). I am almost certain that this route should be ridden from the top where I was to the bottom where I started, there was no way I was going to try I now. I wanted a drink but only had my contaminated bottle with me. I set off down the track, it was only after about half a mile that I checked the GPS and found I was heading in the wrong direction. So a quick about turn and I kept an eye on the GPS to ensure I was going in the right direction almost to the point where I missed the corner and nearly went in to a ditch, the sooner I get back to the car the better I was going to be. I soon found the main road and made my way on to the tarmac and headed the short three quarters of a mile ride back to the car.

We loaded the bikes onto the car and headed for home, both bikes needed a good chain clean so that’s was my next job as soon as we got in. The wife hosed the bikes off while I got the cleaning kit and bike stand ready. As I am cleaning the bikes my stomach is aching, but I ignore it and carry on cleaning the bikes, then putting all the kit away while I let the bikes drip dry. I head inside for a clean up of myself some clean cloths……………………….AND THE LOO!! I spend the next hour trying to eat dinner and ignore my somersaulting stomach. Thankfully as I only had a couple of mouth full of water the iffy stomach disappeared as quickly as it arrived. It was at this point that I notice it is pouring with rain and both bikes are sat out side drying, well at least that was the intention, so I then have to sit in the rain oil-ling the chain

I guess the only good thing that came out of the ride today was the fact that I did not break anything on the bike, apart from that I think I might forget this Saturdays ride!!

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