I’m up in Yorkshire for a few days with the family so took the opportunity to go out for a quick ride. That was the plan anyway. What transpired was a 4 hour catastrophe. It consisted of disgusting climbs, horrible wind and rain and a series of navigational howlers. The worst one was riding up the ‘closed’ main road climb from Hebden Bridge to Oxenhope in the belief that it wouldn’t be properly closed. I was in bad mood before I even started because I’d tried to avoid the bottom of the road, only to have google maps redirect me up a cobbled staircase on my bike. I got onto the main road further up. It was properly closed. There wasn’t even a road. I got out the OS map and took the old road to Haworth, thinking it was a road. It wasn’t. To be fair, it was barely even a track. Three mountain bikers laughed at me. I got covered in filth and my bike is unrecognisable.
There were moments where the ride changed from being vile to ‘almost acceptable’, but these were few and far between. I found an absurd climb called “Goose Eye Brow” which led onto “Game Scar Top”. Everywhere were reminders of my fallibility; “Lower Slack, Slack Road”. The list goes on.
I think the technical term for it is ‘character building’.
The stats are pretty unpleasant. I told my mum the other day how fast I was riding these days. This is what happens as a result. My garmin was showing a 13.5mph average, which is a bit more acceptable, given the amount of
climbing walking across the moor in cleats.