I decided to head out on the bike late on my Monday off work. I had planned a 17 mile route, out to Ripley, then along the back lanes to Knaresborough and back to Harrogate.
I arrived in Ripley, and headed up Ripon Road. This is a fast narrow road for traffic, but I was only on it for 200 meters or so. As it turned out, it was quiet on the road anyway.
Turning Right off that road, Nidd Lane opened up before me. Lots of icy puddles, massive clumps of dirt that had fallen off tractors hampered my line. It was a gorgeous road to ride down, lots of ups and downs, but with nothing to really cause massive out of the saddle pumps, but enough to get the old heart pumping..
Nidd Lane morphed into Breton Lane, which was even more of a beautiful road. I was enjoying the ups and downs, the road curves.
All too soon, the road ended onto the Ripley Road going into Knaresborough. This is another road, where the Traffic zips along at 60mph, and my healthy fear of fast moving traffic comes into force. And there was a good few more steeper hills here too.
Several cars passed me overly close, others gave me plenty of room. I pummeled the road, climbed the hills and found myself in the outskirts of Knaresborough.
There was some good driving by an audi driver, I’ll let the video show it, but there was lots of room given, no silliness and just very thoughtful driving, I wish everyone could cruise along like this..
Zipling along the last of the hills, I got stopped at the traffic lights at bond end.
I suddenly realised how cold it was. Looked at my GPS to notice it had barely gone over 1 degree Celsius. No wonder my fingers felt like they where going to drop off.
I descended knaresborough hill, pulled up at the waterside and had a drink. Then it was time for the worst bit of the ride, up the beryl Burton cycle way. It’s damn steep, and long but did it, and I a new personal best time too. The cycleway back to Bilton, is a sorry state of potholes, exposed brick and bone shaking roughness.. It’s just awful on anything but a mountain bike. Honestly Harrogate Council, you need to get the road sorted. But alas, I’ll lick a dovecot if it ever happens.
The ride down Skipton road however was when the pain of the cold really kicked in. The openness of the road coupled with the windchill of a fast downhill, really chilled my bands and face to the bone. Then it was back home, where the feeling gradually returned.
It was a damn good ride, with a good number of personal bests to boot, And a Personal best 10 miles of 48m:47s which is a 6m:06s improvement. And that with the best 1 hour distance the day before, which was a Massive improvment. Infact, I’m not quite sure what happened… (Personal best One hour of 17.37 km which is a 153.19 m improvement.)