Saturday, 27 June 2015

Testing New Bags

Yesterday we got some new bags from Alpkit so we thought we best test them out before Peru.  The plan was just to have a nice ride from Staveley up Nan Bield, Kentmere Pike then back home for tea. The bikes were heavier than we would have liked!  Mine coming in at 32.1 kg and Fi's 30.2 kg.   Heavier bikes made the riding a tad slower especially on the uphills, also it was quite entertaining for me watching Fi attempt to lift her bike and bags onto her back for Nan Bield (A passing walker even offered to help lift it on!).  All considering the weight of the bikes were not too bad since we had seven days worth of food and all the other bits and bobs needed for a seven day bikepacking trip.

Stat 21.2 mile 3190ft
Fi at the top of Kentmere Hall

Messing with the bike 

The Pushing

The Carrying

The Resting

Getting ready for the down hill

At last downhill

Just about to hit the track 

Monday, 15 June 2015

John's Helvellyn ride

The route started in Glenridding up Sticks Pass down Sticks Pass to Thirlmere.  Next up Fisher Gill to Lower Man along the tops until we hit Helvellyn (second or third lunch by  this point! ) After this we headed down to Comb Crag to Thirlmere again, then along the forest to Raise Beck up this to Grisedale Tarn down Grisedale Beck and back to the cars.   Describing the biking for this route roughly would be, ' MOUNTAIN bike riding that involves lots of pushing, carrying and a small amount of riding up hill until the fantastic, technical downhills.'

Stat 19.3m 5941ft
Top of Sticks Pass 

Carrying next to Fisher Gill

New Fence 

The Good, the Bad and the Ugly 

Lower Man 

Last Climb 

Nearly done 

Preparing for the down hill 

Friday, 12 June 2015

Kentmere Horse Shoe.

'It does exactly what it says on the tin'   Good old Kentmere Horse Shoe clockwise (The best way in my opinion).  Great day out riding, pushing and carrying the bikes.  Decided to do this midweek, conditions really dry due to no rain this week.  Yes I am talking about the Lake District being DRY. Even the bogs across the tops of Kentmere Pike.
This was the Sam Houghton warm up and glad we didn't waste the day resting the legs for the next day!

Stats 25m 4415ft 
Looking back from where we had just come from 


Climb onto Froswick

Coming off Froswick

Riding to Thornthwaite Crag

Pushing to Thornthwaite Crag 

Still pushing 

The Beacon 

Harter Fell 

Kentmere Pike

Fi looking into Kentmere 

Monday, 8 June 2015

Trying a new Highstreet ride

The plan was to have a look at the ridge to the back side of High Street known as Long Stile and Rough Crag.  When we got to the top of High Street we started talking to an old chap about the ridge and how rideable it would be.  He told us that there would be one small part that we would be unable to ride ( Not sure if he thought one of us was Danny Macaskill, unfortunately neither of us are ). Anyway we set off from the top down, the first 30 meters were ok John was taking an enduro line by staying on the grass whilst I was trying the main line with not that much success.  From then on the riding flowed in the form of  'on your bike, off your bike, on, off '  all  the way down.   At one point John thought I was going to have an extremely fast tumble to the bottom  but luckily I survived unscarved  phew! We made it to the bottom then headed along Haweswater to pick up the normal High Street ride.

Stat 27.7 miles 4389 ft
John getting closer to the top 

The rideable ridge !!!!

Blea Water 

John riding the ridge

Looking for the best way to go 

Lake side path 

We can ride 

Meeting up with the normal High Street ride 

Sunday, 7 June 2015

Sun in the lake district with ice-cream and a ferry ride.

Back from Italy and eager to stretch the legs for a blast round the local spots.  The sun was out so we thought lets go for a tour and catch the ferry back, after a morning of doing jobs we headed out. High Borrans, Jenkins Crag, along and up Loughrigg instead of up the steep tarmac then over to Elterwater.  Some sneaky trails followed by Lingmoor, quick stop at the bottom to appreciate  the downhilling in Garda as it had paid off with me only dabbing once on the downhill(balancing issue!)
From Lingmoor we headed into Hawkshead still being in the Italian mode and stopping for ice-cream.  Unfortunately a climb up to Hodge close followed by Iron Keld and a blast down the cobbles to whizz along to the ferry.  A few minutes wait for the the ferry and then a chat to other fellow bikers of routes whilst gliding smoothly on the ferry giving the legs a brisk rest.  As time was ticking on we decided to take the road home and landed back ready for a feast of Spaghetti!  By Fi

SATS - 1582 metres of ascent and 59.9km (should have gone round the block to add .1km!)
Heading off in shorts and t-shirts

Fallen down tree on Jenkins Crag

Loughrigg Terrace

Paul attempting a step up

View of Rydal water

I want to be back in Garda doing the drops.

Elterwater - Ready, Steady


Langdales visible in the background

Lake Windermere

Relaxing whilst waiting for the ferry

Friday, 5 June 2015

Torbole sunshine and biking fun

Paul and I decided we wanted to enjoy a bit of sun, climbing hills on the bikes and in shuttles and biking down a variety of trails so we booked flights for Lake Garda and off we went.  End of May seemed a great time to go with the weather warming up but not being scorching and yes we had made the right decision as we left England with the forecast for home looking miserable!  We landed in Verona and made our way to Torbole at the north end of the Lake close to Riva del Garda.  Last time I was here it was 40 degrees and I was miserable due to nursing an ankle injury with stitches after a rock fell on it in the Dolomites, therefore at the time I disliked the area; too hot, could not cool down in the water grrrrrrr.  Luckily this time my opinion totally changed as a full week of mtb was encountered whilst meeting many friendly and amazing people, thanks Liteville, Syntace and Michael Cycle Shiel for making our holiday fantastic with great bikes and trails.

The pictures speak more than words for this area so I am not going to waffle on.  Some days we biked up to the top of the mountains with hike a bikes such as Monte Stivo and Altissimo, other days we used our legs and shuttles (Bocca di Fobia) and then we were also lazy and just used the shuttles.
Day 1 taking the shuttle up to do Tremalzo classic

Tremalzo Classic climbing the grassy slope whilst gasping for breath

Enjoying the view to the lake whilst the sun was starting to shine

Lake Garda

Climbing up to Naranche 800 metres

Enjoying a quick rest before climbing another 1300 metres!

Mule trail begins and the steep road is left behind us.
Looking ahead, are we really going up there?
Nearly at Monte Stivo

Carrying time.

Looking back down to Torbole where we were a few hours before.

Enjoying the views at the top of Monte Stivo
Worth the effort.
Downhill begins.

After pushing on the 666 the trail becomes flowy and rideable.
Lower down weaving through the trees.
Day 3, the trails become steppy and rocky.  Michael shows us his skill.

Push, carry and scramble along this route.

Amazing views as we traverse along with drops to the right eeek!

Day 4 - We decided to bike up to Altissimo whilst Michael got the shuttle.  Will we beat him there?

601 route becomes a carry it is going to be interesting descending this later.

Altissimo ahead in the cloud.

Unfortunately Michael beat us there.

Preparing for the 601

Off we go.

Fun times on the 601

Rocky section conquered without dabbing.
Coast Trail

Heading down the coast trail a little exposed in places!

Day 5 - Climbed up to the skull, ready for a quick blast down before the Naranche Trail and then the Anaconda Trail.  

 Surprisingly the 601 climbed well and handled the downhills fantastically.  Never attempted so many technical sections before.
First World War trenches

Day 6 - Enjoying a group ride with a downpour for just a few hours.  Long lunch in snack bar appreciated until the showers passed.
Day 7 - Last blast before heading to the airport

Views amazed us all week.

Great fun had on the 301 All Mountain, 301 Enduro and 601

Bunny keeping an eye on the customers. "What would you like ribbit, ribbit?"