Chilly, Muddy, Fun Saturday Ride
While the weather and the short evenings have been keeping us indoors, I’ve been planning a new 10 mile loop in an attempt to stop me heading for Hollingworth Lake on autopilot every time I get my bike out.
Playing with Map My Ride, I worked out a new loop via Milnrow using mainly traffic-free trails, with the intention of trying it out alone to see if I can take the family on some or all of it once the warmer weekends begin.
It was cold on Saturday, but it was dry so nothing was going to stop me going out. My first little job was to attach my shiny new Phone Mount to the handlebars, but there was a problem…
… the handlebars on my new Fat Boy are, erm, Fat. So the phone mount wouldn’t slip onto them. As a result I had to put it onto the bar ends. Now, this doesn’t look very cool and it probably isn’t very safe. All it’ll take is one clout into a fencepost and my new phone will go for a Burton’s. So, following Jon’s advice, I’m going to invest in a Topeak T Bar to mount some of my cockpit instrumentation. I’ll let you know how that goes when I get it.
But, back to the ride. After botching the phone onto the bar ends, I set off on the short road to Milnrow carrying 3 layers of tops, my trusty Ron Hills under MTB shorts, a Buff around my ears and my Sealskinz waterproof gloves. With the wind shut out, I was smiling from ear to ear as I joined the traffic-free tracks across Kingsway Business Park. Back on the roads, the climb up Broad Lane wasn’t fun and I have to admit to a 5-minute rest at the bridge over the motorway. A quick burst from Crompton to Oldham Road was the last bit of road riding before heading up Thornham Old Road, a muddy, snowy, puddly bit of trail that was brilliant fun on the cold day. My nostrils were well and truly cleared by the time I reached the top of that hill, and I was glad I wasn’t in refined company as I left a trail of snot in my wake 😉
Next was a blast down towards Castleton through icy puddles, mud and the walking slalom gates of Saturday strollers. A brief rest at Slattocks Lock on the Rochdale Canal for a drink was well needed, before the final 3 mile towpath (mudbath) ride home.
The loop can be seen on Map My Ride by clicking the map below. Go on, have a look and connect with me there, too! 🙂