Saturday, 17 December 2011

On Looking My Flandrian Best.

Apparently I failed in my attempt to 'Look my Flandrian Best' today as per the Velominati: I wore my lobster gloves and thermal tights with stirrups. But do you know what? I don't care. I had toasty warm fingers for the whole ride for the first time in months, and I'd like to say warm legs as well-but sadly that would be a lie. It must be said however that had I been wearing the shorts/knee warmers combo as it is suggested-I would probably still be up on the top of some cold snowy Welsh hill right now with legs resembling blue blocks of ice.

If I had to summarise today's 2 and a half hours I would use the following words: snow, slush, hail, sun, wind, atmospheric, cold, isolation, thought provoking, cake. You can see the route here: It took in part of the local Tour of the Mining Valleys Road Race circuit, including the (in)famous '49er' finishing climb. Can't wait to race up it let me tell you. Below is a selection of shots taken on the main valley road:

Above is a short video taken on the same road. It was quite windy. The road was quite noisy due to all the slushy haily snowy stuff, so feel free to turn the volume down if you so wish ;)

Once properly up on the tops, there was that much slushy stuff on the road my speed ended up close to the 10mph region than the usual 20mph it turned out, if there was any ice there I didn't come across it-but better safe than crumpled in a heap against a Welsh fence somewhere! It was properly wintery up there though, nice and festive :)
This is approaching the top of the '49er'. 

Rather wish I'd had a proper camera with me :(

Luckily the Nant-yr-Arian cafe was open upon my arrival today, so I treated myself to coffee and a flapjack.
Got to have a shot of the food now haven't we?
Tomorrow is the planned Ystwyth CC 'Xmas Run' up to Dinas Mawdwy, Bwlch y Groes and then back via Dolgellau. Should be interesting providing the roads are clear; as from what I hear, it's a bit of a monster. Interestingly, Bill Nickson Snr (side note: I race for the Bill Nickson Cycles RT) won the 1976 Milk Race that went over the Bwlch.
That's Bill in yellow. Back in the days when men were men. And shorts were 'chafy' (or so my Dad says)
 Legend has it that Bill climbed it in 53-15. Or something. Wouldn't surprise me. 

No matter what happens I'll be out at some point tomorrow for my last ride round here before going back home for a few weeks of Xmas R&R, eating and essay writing.

Watch out for a video of some clips I took whilst out the other day...should be up when Windows Movie Maker decides to stop being an arse. So maybe make yourself a cup of tea.

Thanks for reading! 

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