Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Rapha #festive500 Part 7. Strava Challenge Run 20+13 Day 5

The last day for both challenges today, and there are miles needed for both of them.

 Fell shoes on first, and up the Knott.

A schoolboy error on my part, we'd not taken waterproofs.

By the time we had gotten home we were soaked to the skin, though thankfully still warm.

A quick change of kit and we are back on the road to Pomeroy, and then on to the High Peak trail.


 Muddy too.

Slightly downhill on the way back though.

A top day out.

Monday, December 30, 2013

Rapha #festive500 Part 6.

Rain. We've been lucky so far this year. But this morning it was tipping down.

We'd arranged to meet some friends for lunch at Hassop, so we left it as late as possible before we ventured out.

Once again we took to the Monsal Trail.

The good thing about the rain though was that there were relatively few other people out on the trail.

In Bakewell Minipips does his pirate impression.

Shortly after we bumped into Amy, Ali and Hannah.

We rode to Hassop and had a rather nice lunch.

By the time we left to get a few more miles done, it was well after 2pm. This meant that once again we'd be finishing in the dark.

Not to worry though the tunnels have lights.

The tunnel pictured above is the longest on the Monsal Trail at 490 metres.

On our return journey, as we were about halfway through the tunnel, all the lights went out.

Dark in a tunnel isn't night time dark, it is black nothingness. It was quite scary.

Thankfully even though it wasn't turned on, I did have a light. With the light now turned on, and our hearts pumping to the max, we made our way back to the car.

34.7 miles today. Which leaves just over 40 to do tomorrow for the #festive500. Oh and there's a 4 mile run to fit in as well to complete the Run 20+13.

Sunday, December 29, 2013

Rapha #festive500 Part 5.

Another day, and another puncture to repair before we went anywhere.

We rode from home, and met a few of our running mates at the top of Chunal who were racing.

Past Moorfield, bypassing Glossop.

Up the Snake Pass with what little wind there was, at our behinds for once.

At the bottom of the Snake (after passing one of our mates on the way up) we took an out and back detour to Fairholmes to see the cascade from the dam. which wasn't happening today.

Minipips needed a bit of fuel before we hit the cafe.

At Hope we went to the Woodbine Cafe for a proper lunch. Minipips redeemed his free hot chocolate.
To qualify you have to be partaking in the #festive500 and be 8.

From Hope we rode through Castleton, then up the "broken road" past Mam Tor to Rushup Edge.

From Rushup, it was mostly downhill to the pub where we met my wife and daughter for some refreshments.

39.4 miles today.

Exactly 75% of the 500 done, with 2 days left.

The weather for the rest looks rubbish though. :)

Saturday, December 28, 2013

Strava Challenge Run 20+13 Day 4 + Rapha #festive500 Part 4.

We've been making good progress with both of the challenges so far. Today we added a few more miles to both challenge totals.

First off we went for a run.

Minipips managed to get one of his shoes stuck in a bog.

The high point of our run.

5.8 miles run. Which leaves 4 miles to do.

Once back home I found out that I had a puncture, so had to sort that before we headed out on our bike ride.

Today a different disused railway, the Monsal Trail.

At Hassop we stopped for the cafe, but the queue was so long that we sacked that off in favour of one in Bakewell.

From Bakewell we rode back to Wye Dale, then turned round and did it all again.

We did stop for afternoon tea though.

The best sunset we've seen this week.

A nice easy 35 miles. Only 187 Kms left to do.

In the last 6 days we've done 24 hours of exercise.

Friday, December 27, 2013

Rapha #festive500 Part 3.

This was the forecast for todays ride.

Minipips was ready for whatever the weather was going to throw at us.

The forecast proved itself quite accurate from the off. I struggled to get my car door open without losing a limb in the process.

We had elected to head straight into the wind on the first part of our ride.

Only a few miles down the trail, and we encountered the first of the winds victims.

Trees were not the only things that got blown over. Both of us on more than one occasion got whisked off our wheels. After the first couple of times it caused much amusement.

The railway embankments were the worse for this, and we elected on a couple of these to push our bikes across rather than go airborne off the leeward side.

At Ashbourne we stopped for a snack, hoping we'd then get blown back up North.

Unfortunataly for the most part, the wind had other thoughts. Including one particular phenomenon, that saw us travelling 20 miles an hour, then 4 miles an hour whilst heading in exactly the same direction on the same bit of trail.

32 miles done we stopped for lunch in an old workers hut. The wind howled outside as we drank our tea and ate our food. We were 7 miles from the car, and it would have been easy to call it a day.

Instead we headed South again. Back into the wind.

We were getting reasonably competent at staying upright on the bike now. The wind was turning out to be quite good fun.

That sign below that Minipips is looking at starts out "Dream of Noise....". There was no need to dream. At times we struggled to hear what the other was saying over the wind.

Just South of Tissington we turned round to head back to the car.

Minipips caned it on the way back substantially lifting our days average mph.

What a brilliant day!

56.5 miles today. 257/500 Kilometres of the #festive500 done with 4 days to go.

Thursday, December 26, 2013

Strava Challenge Run 20+13 Day 3.

I was hoping Minipips was content doing the Rapha #festive500, but he reminded me this morning that we hadn't done any running the last couple of day towards the other current Strava challenge, Run 20+13 miles.

Sunshine, and a very frosty morning.

We ran through the village and up the side of the reservoir, with Minipips taking the higher variant.

After the reservoir we headed up William Clough, trying to keep our feet dry.

A quick picture at the col, then on towards Mill Hill.

At Mill Hill some homemade cheese scones for sustenance.

What should have been fast running from there, turned out to be a battle to stay upright. The path is made up with old mill floor slabs, which were all covered in ice. I'm glad we weren't on our bikes.

Minipips managed to lose a glove at one point, so we added a bit of extra distance by going back to find it.

Once off the hill, we took the shortest route home, we were supposed to be at Grannies for Boxing Day lunch 70 miles away in a couple of hours time. ( We just made lunch)

9.1 miles today. Which leaves 10 to do. Back on the bikes tomorrow though.

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Rapha #festive500 Part 2.

A leisurely start to the morning, though we did have to wash yesterday's muck of the bike before we got on the road.

Over to the Polocini Coffee Shop to meet some friends.

Minipips wasn't happy that there would be no hot chocolate or cake today.

From there we rode on surprisingly busy roads out to Cheshire.

We didn't buy any eggs.

A pleasant loop at a steady pace, then we parted company with our friends and headed home to get ready for our Xmas dinner.

45.6 miles 1/3 rd done with 6 days to go.

We hope you all have a good Christmas.

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Rapha #festive500 Part 1.

Before we departed this morning we jokingly put the picture below on twitter. The forecast was for a bit of wind but unlike our first day last year, dry. So no rain lashed faces today.

We drove a few miles to our starting place, parked the car up, and it started to snow. Minipips screams "SNOW !!!!". As we rolled down the first few miles of trail, his enthusiasm for snow departed. This was probably due to the snow being driven at speed by the wind in to his face. Not funny.

Our plan for the day was to use two disused railway lines, which are now known as the Tissington, and the High Peak trails.

Visit either of these trails in summer and in good weather and you will  be far from alone. However pick most any day in winter and these trails are deserted.

Our first out and back is down to Middleton Top. The wind seems to come from most directions, but these turbines weren't turning.

At Middleton Top we turn round and head back to Parsley Hey. (Worth noting, none of the cafes are open this time of year)

No more precipitation now, instead proper sunshine.

At Parsley Hey we stopped for lunch. We'd spotted this building on our way South. Apparently it was built by Croatian stonemasons, in their local building style. It looked ace, but it could have done with two windows and a door. It was colder inside than out.

Having eaten lunch, and got really cold, we head south again. The wind has picked up, and is right in our faces. A tough few miles until we get some tree shelter near Tissington.

At Ashbourne, a quick photo and more food, then it's time to take advantage of the wind to help us back homewards.

Not warm, but you can't beat a bit of winter sun.

As darkness fell and we neared the car, it started to snow again.

Perfect timing.

92 out of 500 Km done.

Monday, December 23, 2013

Strava Challenge Run 20+13 Day 2.

"Do we have to?" That was both our thoughts.
It was grim outside in a horizontal rain sort of way.

Full winter wear was donned and we went for it.

It was windy on the top of Lantern Pike.

From there we headed back home. We'd had enough of the weather for one day.

5.1 miles.

Tomorrow the #festive500 starts and we will ride our bikes.