A cold rush of air to the lungs.

Shouldn’t really be blogging again so soon… Way too much for anyone but mum to want to read. And way too much bikey stuff even for a mum. So I’ll make it a short one.dscf0745.jpgMatthew, who we met on the Superbowl Ride the day before, offered to take us for a spin round one of his favourite trails – Sandspring and Hearthstone. It was another cold day; maybe -10c or so. The steep debut to the ride and the sharp rush of air through our lungs spluttered us into life, like trying to get our old campervan started on a cold winter’s day…We’re quickly learning that the rides round here follow a fairly straightforward route profile. Up. Across a ridge. Then down. And this particular ‘up’ wound on for some 3 miles or so. Unrelenting, making a beeline for the top of the ridge – Reddish Knob. ‘The place whence all trails descend’, as Matthew put it.At times it was unashamedly ‘chin-to-handlebar’ steep. Non-cyclists might not appreciate the severity of this gradient. Adopting a comical, ostrich-like stance, elbows tucked in like wings and head poking out over the handlebars, makes the front wheel less likely to pop up into the air. It’s ungainly but it does the job. So we scrunched our way through patches of snow, philosophising about life, adding our own tyre profiles to the neat paw prints of cayotes and bob cats who roam these expansive mountains.dscf0751.jpgWhen finally the time came to peel off, the trail slimmed down to a sinewy singletrack, strewn with the contorted limbs of dead trees to hop over, and mined with rocks and drops. As we picked up speed, a hard wind stiffened our cheeks. The late afternoon sun picked out mossy detail on the oaks, light flicking through the branches like a film reel. Rushing ever downwards, wheels kicked up plumes of leaves on a bed of pine needles.dscf0748.jpgIt’s good to get out (-:Thanks Matthew for showing us a great ride.


2 Responses to “A cold rush of air to the lungs.”

  1. 1 Simon G February 6, 2007 at 5:49 pm

    Glad to hear that you got there safe and sound…if with a little hiccup. You missed a great day at Afan on Friday. I did the White Level for the first time. It was such great weather and only a couple of other people there. We then swung by the Quantocks on Sunday for a long walk…I’d forgotten how beautiful they are.

    Have a great week over there…I look forward to hearing more…you can never post too often.

  2. 2 Beth February 7, 2007 at 9:46 am

    I’m surprised they let you through US immigration. Have a good b-day in the U.S of A baby! What is it the big 40 this year?


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Please check out our main website for details on our bike trips to the Indian Himalayas.

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