Tuesday, 21 October 2014

Quantocks and Style

I woke up on Sunday with tired legs but with the promise of a blast around the Quantocks with a local. An opportunity to ride the hidden trails and experience the blast of the excellent singletrack cut into the coombes was too good to miss just because my body was aching. The Quantocks aren’t well known outside the South West, as a quick survey of work confirmed, but have a very strong mountain bike scene and a network of lines ranging from the fun to the seriously challenging. Wet loam and roots made it a slippery experience, but no less fun. We blasted a few of the trails and then headed across the moors to drop fast into superb flowing singletrack along and down into a coomb that was almost too perfect as it threaded between the trees above a fast stream in a riot of green.


There climbs were handled on fireroads that dragged up, or on tough pulls up from the valley floor, ridable but hard they really pushed me to make the top and gave as much satisfaction (in a different way) from the thrilling drops.

We rolled back to the car and started the process of getting back to London.

If tales of my riding don’t do it for you, this might instead, if you like smooth stylish flowing smashing of trails:


On the other end of things, this:


A

Monday, 20 October 2014

Holidays

If you thought we were way away from Christmas, then you would apparently be wrong as Argos already wants to sell you stuff. I’m including it because it’s nice to see that they want you to buy bikes and pull 180s.


Talking of tricks, some real pros are rocking it.

This is one way to ride a bike... https://t.co/rgtiY2o1jx

— Red Bull UK (@RedBullUK) October 17, 2014

Meanwhile I headed off to the South West to revisit some old trails. On Saturday it was time to hit a big hard ride on Exmoor, from Porlock, riding trails I’ve done before, in many cases in the other direction. Exmoor offers some tough challenges, some of which I could have worked round by not forgetting to pack inner tubes and having to head back to the car. It was a surprisingly hot and humid autumn day and the climbs were brutal from the start.


Exmoor puts up quite a challenge, with fun downhills interspersed with unridable combe climbs and huge powerful long drags up onto the highest point of the moor at Dunkery Beacon.

The rewards came in terms of wide open views and a sense of achievement, although not enough of the top-level singletrack that the route we were following had promised, with surprisingly large stretches of road. Six hours out on the moors and a pinch puncture each and we were back, wet and blown in the wind, but having had a real adventure of a day out on the bike.

A

Friday, 17 October 2014

Design

So after yesterday’s mystery video was a BMX one, I can bring you another where I am fully aware of the content: Kris Kyle rips up a new skatepark.

Meanwhile over at Pinkbike a valid point is raised about mountain bike videos. I will do my best to address this imbalance towards riding that is too impressive by being consistently unimpressive in any films I make.

Finally today and for the week have a look at these structures, designed with bikes firmly in mind.

I’m off to ride some old favourites, see you on Monday.

A

Thursday, 16 October 2014

Lock and Load

Well, yes, I inadvertently missed out a day and now have to try and remember what I thought I was going to talk about.

This lock has been doing the rounds as it makes your quick release no longer so quick to release, which protects your wheels but I guess would be a bigger faff when you want to pop the wheels out.

In other news I earmarked this video to show you and now can’t remember what it’s about. I’ll enjoy finding out as much as you.

A

Tuesday, 14 October 2014

Crap Bike Party

Remember Road Bike Party? Of course you do as it was up there in the defining viral bike videos of the last few years. A homage has been paid to it using some less expensive bikes:


It’s important to remember as the storms close in that riding a bike is fun like this, and not just ploughing home in waterproofs feeling that squelch as you lift a foot to put it back on the pedal at lights and shaking the rain from your helmet or debating not sitting down so you don’t feel that sensation of sitting in a puddle.

A