Monday, 28 September 2015

The Secret

I'll let you into a secret. Come to think of it, I could write a book, never mind a blog post, call it "The Secret" and peddle it to a whole generation of gullible idiots. Make a fortune selling all kinds of associated quotes and mug-merchandise (no surprise or secret there), and live with my troubled conscience for ever.

Anyway, the secret? You have to enjoy the journey because we are all going to the same destination. This applies equally well to Audax as it does to life. Cycling is the easy part, even if, as on Saturday's Trefil Travail, it involves over 100km of cycling, up nearly 8000 feet of ridiculously steep terrain, and down it too, with gravel and gradients in equal measure.

The hard part? Remembering to enjoy it. Actually not that hard on Saturday, the weather, the route, and the fellow riders were all thoroughly enjoyable.

The introductions from Hugh said there were 8 mountains, but after the first one I lost count, as it seemed like one after another, after another  - you get the idea. But in between all this wonderful character-building low-gear, grinding, and brake-clenching descending, was some of the most spectacular countryside you could hope to see on a sunny late-September day.

But also a fair bit of urban and industrial history, deprivation, decay and (I hope) indomitable spirit in the communities of the South Wales valleys, through which our route passed. With great company from riding companions James, Martyn, Alan and our new-found and local guide, Mike, it was a terrific day to do the ride. I hope this mix of pictures, some taken by me some by one of the other 17 intrepid souls that did the ride (thanks to David Hann) , do it justice.

In case you are wondering, it's true, I am the only one not wearing the BK Velo jersey. Partly as a result of poor clothing choices on a day I expected it to be cold, partly because I'm an individual, not really happy blending in. Unless it's Rapha of course.

A fellow rider hits the heights - courtesy of David Hann

In the pub at lunch, glad you can't see my attire at this point - courtesy of David Hann


One of mine on the top of the moor

One of my failed panoramas

I like them anyway

Fellow rider crests a rise & waves!
(photo by David Hann)

You are all individuals