Spring, when the new shoots of life start appearing, the sun starts to feel warmer and thoughts turn to getting your good bike out and wearing fewer layers of clothes. Meanwhile back in Scotland, winter has started and it’s freezing cold, snowing and blowing gales. Roll on Majorca!
There were 7 daft enough to go out in this weather and meet at The Gates. Decided to head to Dunkeld and continue on to Bankfoot to the Tower cafe, to make the return leg shorter (into the wind). Nice tailwind past Piperdam and on to Tully. OCD Jim was struggling with a chest infection and so turned off towards Newtyle at the bottom of Tully.
The six of us then kept a good pace out the Lochs road to Dunkled, with a tailwind all the way there. But it was bloomin cold. As planned, continued through Birnam and up the Braes before the drop down to Bankfoot. Nasty little climb from the main road up to the Tower for a welcome heat.
We managed to beat the breakfast cut off by 2 minutes (11:45am) so we could order up our egg rolls. Weather outside was cold, snowing and howling gale, so time for a second coffee as we weren’t in any hurry to go back out….
After some more procrastination we did eventually head out and brave the elements. Managed to get 100 yards down the road before Joe shouted “puncture”. We were shivering, but we resisted going back for another coffee while Joe fixed the rear tyre.
The run home was a bit of a slog with gales, sleet and sore legs all round! Joe was suffering, and had to pull over after Kettins for a wee casual vomit (copyright Billy Connelly). Slow going home, think it was a constant headwind for me for about 30 miles and I was glad to eventually get home for a heat. Still, it was another 75 miles in the legs, so not all bad.
There were 10 of us at The Gates. Charlie went home when his seat post snapped. Lionel said he was only staying out until the rain started, so he went home just as we were setting off. That left 8 rolling away in the rain. Kenny turned off at Muirhead to go to Newtyle and Glamis loop. The 7 of us went past Piperdam and on to Tully and the weather was awful and didn’t look like it was going to get any better anytime soon. It didn’t.
Billy W swung off and headed to Collace. And so the 6 of us kept on sloshing through the wet. Decision made to cut short and so instead of going all the way to Birnam we headed from Caputh to Meikleour, round to Blairgowrie and home over the iron bridge to Newtyle. Non stop run. Don’t think we would have gotten going again if we had stopped. Feet and hands absolutely frozen and wasn’t exactly much fun.
A “hard as nails” mention to Kate (and me) for being the only ones
stupid hard enough to do both weekend runs – around 120 miles and almost all of it in the wet, sleet, wind and cold. No mid run bus trip for us like those soft pros in Milan-San Remo 🙂
Bring on spring, pleeeeeeeease
It was a dreich morning and didn’t get any better. There were 5 of us who left the Gates and up past Piperdam to Tully. Weather was ominous looking and the snow started falling. The road from the bottom of Tully out to Kinrossie was white and we took it easy, thankfully no incidents to report. Joined the main road on to Balbeggie and Scone, which was clear of snow, but wet, to add to the fun.
Bill L peeled off at Perth to head back, leaving 4 of us to head towards Bridge of Earn and Abernethy. It was snowing, cold and wet and we did mull over whether to just keep going. But as Ian seemed to have frostbite thought it best to stop for a heat and the coal fire at Culdees was a welcome relief.
Thawed out, heading back out into the cold and wet was a challenge. We felt lucky so ignoring the Road Closed signs we headed up towards Hazelton. Thankfully the road was only blocked for 50 metres or so and we continued on to Hazelton and back home.
A pretty miserable day, weather wise, but what doesn’t kill you…
Roll on spring.
For a nice change the weather was kind, dry with no wind to speak of. All of which made for a healthy turn out (almost 90 across all the rides).
The 70 mile ride had 27 starters as we headed on the route towards Newtyle, Glamis and on to Kirriemuir. All at a brisk pace, but not too bad.
After Kirri the pace did pick up but it all came back together for the comfort break and we tried to keep it steady 21’s past Blairgowrie and along the top road to Dunkeld.
The descent into and climb out of Dunkeld started to get the heart going and we were starting to pass some of the riders from the shorter runs now. Flew along to Coupar Angus, with the bunch thinned down a bit, waiting for the last surge.
Brian was driving us towards Tully and as we hit the climb, that’s where my legs said “enough” and the lead group rode away from me. I took Tully at my own, slightly more comfortable pace. Great result as I hit the top and spied Kenny Frater just ahead. Caught up with Kenny, who turned and said “hop on” as he did what he does best and put the power down. A thanks to Kenny for dragging me to the end at a speed I would never have managed on my own (was struggling to hold his wheel) as he powered back to Birkhill.
Garmin was playing up again, but I had 3hrs 17 minutes elapsed time for the 68 miles (20.7mph average) and the first finishers must have been 2-3 minutes ahead of me. Not hanging about…
Lots of food and chat back at the Hall, with most people seeming to have had a cracking run out and not too many mishaps.
Thanks again to everyone who organised and helped out with the event. And thanks to everyone who came along to ride the events, hope you had a good day and hope to see some of you out on our club runs soon.
That’s the Reliability Season over for another year, my legs will be glad. Just need to get fit for Majorca now 🙂