An XC Jeyboy again
I haven’t written much here for a while have I? Every so often I get into a cycle of
I really should post something but I don’t really have anything interesting to say, which of course isn’t the case at all. I’ve got plenty to say, I just can’t be arsed to actually write it. Its also partially because I’ve gone right off the design of this place again, but can’t seem to get myself together to to anything about it. I was described as terminally lethargic once. I’m going to get all predictable on you now and talk about mountain bikes.
This time last week, I was recovering from an epic cross-country ride with Lord Simon Everitt and Stu Bond. It was the hottest day of the year so far, so obviously we set off on our bikes shortly after midday.
Interesting point here. Si’s XC bike is an old Yeti DH-6. A few years ago, this would have been considered a state of the art downhill bike, yet here he is, with a single crown fork on the front riding it for miles on end. I was on my Cove Stiffee single speed, so our bikes couldn’t have been much more different if they tried.
We got to the furthest point from home – Cranham woods – and myself and Stu were really suffering. I wasn’t dealing with the heat very well and Stu was very dehydrated, so we decided to head down to the pub to fill up with water. Si’s phone goes – its Gary. My flatmate, Brett, is in casualty, having dislocated his shoulder. He was on hist first run, hit the first corner too quick, lost the front end and down he went. Winner! While Si is on the phone, a car goes past and suddenly just spears off of the road. Most bizarre.
It took us bloody ages to get home. Si was an absolute dynamo and didn’t appear to tire at all, but I was absolutely knackered by the time we got back. The highlight of the return journey was bombing down Leckhampton at significantly higher than the speed limit. Always good for a laugh.
We finished off the day with a barbecue at Si’s place, which was nice.
Since then, I seem to have picked up a minor addiction to XC riding. I’m enjoying it again like I haven’t for years. I went out on Tuesday and Thursday nights and then again today. Ker-ray-zee dude! Its partially down to my DH bike being in desperate need of attention, but even if that was fully working, I wouldn’t be riding it nearly this much.
Today it was my turn to be the dynamo, though I went out on my own so there was nobody there to witness it. There was virtually nobody else out on the trails at all – I guess they’re all either hiding from the mud or they’re at SSMM.
I rode up Leckhampton Hill, down the other side, up some hill whose name I have no idea of (the other side of the Seven Springs junction), across and down again, then back up Lecky, then down the other side out towards Birdlip, rode a load of cheeky singletrack over there, found the world’s muddiest bridleway, saw some wild deer on the path, got lost for a while, eventually popped out somewhere I recognised, rode back up Lecky again, down the other side towards Cheltenham, and finally saw another rider – Alex, braving the mud and pushing his DH bike up the trails towards me.
I was feeling a bit tired by this point so after chatting for a while headed off down the tramway and then blatted across town and back home.
I can see myself going out for a similar ride tomorrow too, though the single speed is in need of some attention now too. The drive train is well and truly shagged so a trip to the LBS might be needed in the morning.
Looking back, there was one particular track where I’m quite glad I was on my own. I had the Kaiser Chiefs playing loud on my MP3 player, and was riding no-handed down the trail, singing along and air-guitaring like a maniac. I must have looked mildly silly to say the least. I was having great fun though.
Right now, I’m listening to Glastonbury 2005 on Radio 1. Annie Nightingale and Annie Mac are hosting an afternoon of biggup jungly massive dance music live from the festival – they’ve just a set from the Plump DJs on and now the Evil Nine are on. I’ve got it on very loud and I’m enjoying it loads.
Oh, and Owen – my bike was very muddy before I went out and it’s significantly muddier now. Guess what? It still works! Surprise!