Wednesday, 29 June 2005

Road loop, through Neasham, Girsby, Eryholme and Dalton

Went on a road ride tonight with Andrew U. We met in the town, then went on a road loop, through Neasham, Girsby, Eryholme and Dalton; about 25 miles in around 3 hours. We took it pretty easy, as Andrew's not ridden much recently and I've a chesty cough as a result of all the hayfever recently. I was probably having a bit of an asthma attack too, which slows me down somewhat...

The weather wasn't bad; pleasantly cool, with constant drizzle.

A map of the ride

The road from Neasham round to Girsby is gorgous, dead straight (it's a Roman road) and with trees planed along the edge, like a French boulevard. We were just saying what a fantastic place it must be to live, when a jet plane flew really low overhead, on its way to land at Durham Tees Valley Airport, which is just over the river. We could actually see the plane touch down and hear its engine pitch change.

The diversion we took off the A167 through Eryeholme was well worth it. A fantastic undulating road, with grass growing down the middle.

This could become a regular route; possibility of cutting short (via bridleway over Tees to Sockburn) or extending. Doable in two hours when not ill?

  • Distance: 30 miles (including home-start and end-home)

  • Surface: Road

  • Weather: Cool but damp

  • Time: Early evening, around 3 hours

  • Bike: Inbred, with 2.25" tyres

  • Comments: Felt good.

[Update] I've just used the cool gMaps Pedometer to map the route and calculate the distance. Seems like AndrewU needs to recalibrate his bike computer....

Monday, 27 June 2005

Internet gems

You have got to go and see Sweet Smelling Sweater Salad @ Make sure you click through for the full effect. Love the bored expression on her face.

Friday, 24 June 2005


Congratulations to my ikkle sister, who just found out she got a first class Honours degree. Way to go sis!

Saturday, 18 June 2005

Here be pollen

here be pollen...

I just had to cut short a mountain bike ride because of an extreme hayfever attack. My legs and arms and now both bright red and blotchy; the back of my throat is burning; my nose alternates between blocked and gushing; and my eyes are red and swollen. Note to self: don't ride offroad in pollen season...

I genuinely think I might have to sell my MTB and become a roadie! I don't drive, which means that I can only ride locally. My local trails are overgrown with nettles in summer, plus have the aforementioned polen, and are virtually impassable for a bit chunk of the winter. There's a very small window of decent riding available.

I see a road bike in my future.

Thursday, 16 June 2005

Quick Links

I've added a links section in the sidebar using and

More later

Wednesday, 15 June 2005

A blogging course

If I were to be running a blogging course, what could I include? The course is 12 hours on one weekend, six hours on Saturday and six on Sunday (i.e. four 3 hour sessions, with lunch breaks).

Wednesday, 8 June 2005

Good ridin'

On my bike ride last Friday I just rode the Teesside to Durham part, but I reckon the whole route I mentioned (Darlington - Teesside - Durham - Bishop Auckland - Darlington) would be doable in a day, especially if I didn't ride the Teesside to Durham part via Hartlepool, but instead took the more direct route.

The narrow tyres on my Inbred made it nice and low-friction, which was great for the Sustrans and road mix of trails that we were riding. I span along in a 32:16 gear for most of the ride, just changing to 42:16 for road downhills. It's made me want a singlespeed cyclocross bike now, though. Some drop or moustache bars on my old Kona with narrower tyres would be similar.

Thursday, 2 June 2005

Long time no post

I really am bad at keeping this thing up-to-date.

I got all the marking I had to do the other weekend out of the way and am currently half way through a week-long holiday. We've been away camping which was great apart from the wind on the first day while we were putting the tent up, which split part of a pole (it split lengthways, so we left it in and it was fine apart from being a bit bendier than the rest of the pole) and tore a fairly insignificant seam near the base of the tent. We'll have to get the tent repaired at some point, but it was in much better shape than some others on the site; Coleman tents are great.

I'm off on a bike ride with some people from work tomorrow. We're riding along Sustrans routes from the Tees Barrage to Durham, via Hartlepool. It'll be their second day of a three day mini-tour, but I'm just joining them for the day. It's only around 35 miles, all on road or old railways, so I'm actually considering riding to the start, or carrying on from Durham (time-permitting) along the old railway line to Bishop Auckland, then getting the train back from there. Or, I might just ride Teesside to Durham, like a sensible person.

I'm going to fit the 1.7" semi-slick tyres from my commuter bike to my Inbred, so it'll be interesting to see how it handles with those; I'm planning on entering a local cyclocross in October using these tyres, though I'm worried they're too slick to cope with mud and grass.