31 December 2012

The 6000 mile year...

Once again I’m sat, with a beer, looking back on another year of cycling. My own cycling that is, not the amazing year of pro-cycling we’ve had the pleasure of seeing in 2012! Well done Team Sky, Team GB, Sir Bradley Wiggins, and everyone else that helped make it such a great year!

So, back to my own year. Since I started recording the mileage I ride, back in 2008, I’ve tried to set myself a goal for each year. Between the middle of June and the end of the year in 2008 I managed to cover 1089 miles. In 2009, I logged a total of 3573 miles. The following year and the mileage was up to 4211 miles by the end of December. Last year, 2011, I upped my game a little and took the mileage to 5364 miles. 

For 2012 I wanted to try and push myself further still. I set the target at 6000 miles. As most of my cycling mileage is made up of commuting to and from work it meant I’d have to put in plenty of extra miles on top of the basic route to and from work - I live less than 2 miles from work as the crow flies and only around 2.5 miles by bike! Time to get peddling!

This is how the year went...

46 rides
376.66 miles covered

47 rides
452.63 miles covered

53 rides
701.92 miles covered

33 rides
313.39 miles covered

51 rides
620.66 miles covered

44 rides
471.16 miles covered

39 rides
427.09 miles covered
*Longest single ride of the year 101.37 miles*

53 rides
549.08 miles covered

46 rides
609.44 miles covered

40 rides
441.23 miles covered

47 rides
480.80 miles covered

46 rides
570.51 miles covered

All that little lot adds up to a total of 6014.57 miles - 14.57 miles over my target for the year!

Using GPS, I was able to plan where I'd reach 6000 miles.
The cafe at Alvaston Park - for a bacon sandwich & a latte!

As for 2013... I think it may be time to have a year without any set targets and just enjoy cycling for the sake of it! Maybe....


27 December 2012

Because two is never enough...

It's taken me almost six months but I've had to admit defeat. Running just two bikes was not going to work! I need three! Not want - NEED! And so, in the middle of November I put things to rights and took delivery of a new mountain bike, a 2012 model GT Avalanche 1.

Ever since I killed off my very old Claud Butler back in the summer I've been aware that my other two bikes would be of no use what so ever as and when the snow and ice arrives. I don't mind a bit of a challenge but there is no way I'd get the road bike out if there was even the slightest chance of ice within 50 miles of where I would be riding! The hybrid is not much better - it may have slightly wider tyres but they still don't have any tread worth mentioning. The only other option would be to stop riding in the bad weather and go to work in the car. That "option" was never really an option at all! I'd rather walk!

So, I was back to the three bike option and, thanks to a very good internet deal, I now have suitable transport ready for the snow. Of course, the snow we often see before the year end has failed to appear, so far, and I could, possibly, have saved my cash. When the weather does turn, I'm ready... and if it doesn't, I still have a new toy to play with! 

 Fresh out of the delivery box.

A box of extra little bits ready to be fitted.
(And a free bag of sweets from the supplier!) 

A gorgeous morning for the first ride. A 22 mile loop
around the lanes and off road trails of South Derbyshire. 

A Mucky Nutz fender - cheap but effective.

 Disc brakes - a lot more stopping power than my other bikes!

 30 gears to choose from - too many maybe?

Posing in the Winter sun. 

Almost home - a misty River Trent.

First time out and muddy already! Get used to it!

23 December 2012


Yet again, I return here after too many months away. Back in January I started to post updates again, with the full intention of keeping on top of things. All went well, in a fashion, up until July when I slipped back into my old ways - I kept on putting things off!

So, as a way of easing back into things I have a bunch of photos from our last little holiday, a very nice week spent in Watchet, Somerset. We were there in the middle of October, probably the last time the sun shone properly this year!

Our holiday accommodation - Oak Barn...

Views from around the harbour at Watchet...

High tide...

Low tide...

A little rock tower I built...

Me, and the boats...


An evening walk...

A selection of photos taken in Dunster, just a short drive from where we were staying...

Dunster Castle...