Cold but fabulous…


One of the absolute joys of working from home are mid-week during the day bike rides. I’d actually meant to go out yesterday but I just couldn’t summon up the enthusiasm – I don’t know why, I just couldn’t make myself get out. I had however arranged to meet Malcolm for a ride this morning just after 10am. I have a temperature gauge in my back garden and when I checked it at 7.30 this morning it said -2 but it was a beautiful morning – clear, sunny, hardly any wind and the road outside my house looked fine (even if all the cars were covered in ice).  I gave Malcolm a quick call to check we were still on and left the house slightly late, so had to ride fairly hard to try not to be too late. It was just over 15kms to our meeting point at Withyam and according to Cyclemeter (who’s accuracy/data I always take with a slight pinch of salt), I’d covered the distance in 30 minutes – so had averaged 30kmh. Nice and a good start to the ride. I was on a time deadline to get back home around 12.30 to pick up my daughter from nursery, so we agreed a shorter ride for me and Malcolm would carry on once I had to turn back. We headed up into the Ashdown Forest via Colemans Hatch and then rode straight through at Wych Cross towards Sharpthorne where Malcolm took us left towards Horsted Keynes along a road called Chilling St which features some absolutely beautiful views (and is where the photos for the post were taken). We then rode through to Danehill and Chelwood Gate keeping off the A275. A quick time check showed me it was 12.05 so I reckoned I needed 40 minutes to get home from there assuming it was about 20km. As it turned out it was 27km home from there so I got home at 12.55 having ridden pretty hard for the last 21km from Duddleswell. I got home to find the car gone as my wife had decided to collect our daughter since I hadn’t shown up on time (thanks Love!)

The weather and the bike ride had been fantastic – a pleasure to be out there. I’d chosen the right kit to wear so was pretty warm the whole ride. I’d remembered snacks (not all that normal for me) and had ridden pretty well. Malcolm had introduced me to some more great roads – which I always appreciate and enjoy, it was just a shame I couldn’t stay out longer. I couldn’t help but noticing rusty “water” coming out of my headset when I got back home (pictured) – in fairness it’s been doing this for a while – but I think it’s a sign I might need a new headset. I think my crash has knocked both of my wheels very slightly out of true as well and I’m battling to get my Crud Roadracers to do a good job. However, my trusted old Specialized is still racking up the miles without complaint and that’s something else to be grateful for.
Another nice plus from today is that I passed the 4,500km mark for year and I’m hoping to get to 5,000 weather allowing. Snow’s forecast in the next week or so and the temperatures are way below average for this time of the year. If I can manage another couple of rides in November to get a bit closer to the end goal. 
Thanks for reading