Tuesday, 29 August 2006


everyday is a strangely compelling video; a stopmotion animation made using a photo of Noah K taken everyday for six years.

Cold Turkey

Can I tell you the truth? I mean this isn’t like TV news, is it?

Here’s what I think the truth is: We are all addicts of fossil fuels in a state of denial, about to face cold turkey.

And like so many addicts about to face cold turkey, our leaders are now committing violent crimes to get what little is left of what we’re hooked on.

- Cold Turkey, By Kurt Vonnegut [via CleverChimp]

I don't believe my kids (or yours) will drive either.

Friday, 25 August 2006


Ash from HTB is doing the TransRockies and is keeping a training diary online, I'm even mentioned in the first entry (the Swaledale ride I did in February).

Good luck Ash! The TransRockies are on my 'someday' list.

Sunday, 20 August 2006

Solitude build under way!


Singlespeed World Champs

The Singlespeed MTB World Championships have just taken place in Stockholm. Next year, they'll be in Scotland!

I went to the UK champs this year, as they were local to me, and did quite well out of it. I was planning on going down to Bristol for the 2007 UK championships, but if I can get to the Worlds' in Scotland instead...

I'll have to see how the dates fit in with work and choose based on that.

Monday, 14 August 2006

Salters Circular guided ride

Rather than going up to Hamsterley today, I went along to one of the local guided rides put on by the council. We rode most of the Salters Circular route, apart from Wildgoose Lane which is completely overgrown. Darlo Council have reported this to Durham Council, so it will hopefully be sorted out soon.

We rode slower than I usually would, as there were a couple of beginners in the group of 10, but it was a pleasant ride with nice people. We went on one track I've not used before, and in the opposite direction to some of the routes I usually use.

Distance: 11 miles
Surface: Mainly off-road
Time: 3 hours
Weather: Warm but wet
Bike: Inbred

Tuesday, 8 August 2006

Darlington - Tan Hill - Darlington

A long ride, mainly on the road, but with a little easy off-roading in at the end. I'm pretty tired now. I had a 45 minute stop in Barnard Castle on the way out and another 30 minutes on the way back, and 20 minutes at Tan Hill.

map (might slow your computer a little)

Darlington to Tan Hill Map

I might write more when I can think straight.

Distance: 80 miles
Surface: Mainly road
Time: About 9 hours total
Weather: Warm but overcast, still got sunburnt though
Bike: Inbred

Wednesday, 2 August 2006

Soggy ridin'

Where were you at 2 this afternoon? Nice and warm at work? I was out in the pissing rain, getting soaked to the skin and cover in mud.

A very soggy ride around my 'usual' local loop this afternoon. It took me just over two hours, I think, but I was soaked to the skin and covered in mud by the end of it. But hey, skin's waterproof and mud washes off.

Using the dots on the line around the route in the post linked to earlier, I'd guess at a distance of 20km, which is only about 12 miles, in 2 hours. I was on the On-One Inbred, but rode the whole thing in middle-middle, so almost singlespeed.

This is only the third time in the last 4 1/2 months that I've ridden a geared bike, and I just couldn't be bothered changing gear! I'm starting to agree with Henri Desgrange:

I still feel that variable gears are only for people over forty-five. Isn't it better to triumph by the strength of your muscles than by the artifice of a derailer? We are getting soft...As for me, give me a fixed gear!
-- Henri Desgrange, L'Équipe article of 1902

(I just found NCBC Fixed Gear, which has some great links including one to Cycling before Lycra which describes some great off-road fixed gearing from the days of yore. Need Less, Do More.)

Tuesday, 1 August 2006

Solitude second design

Three weeks ago, Alex sent me the second draft of his design for my Solitude Cycles frame. He again sent two pictures, which show how the bike will compare with my Kona and On-One bikes. The drops look to be a little higher than in the first design, and almost exactly match the position on the grips on my Kona. Riding on the hoods, I'll be as high as the On-One but a bit more stretched out, I think.

Kona Comparison2

On-One comparison2

Colour-wise, I'm probably going to go for Caspian Blue, as used by Triumph on their Thruxton 900. With the black parts and silver decals, that should look sweet.

I should be getting the third (and final) draft soon, but I told Alex not to hurry and to ride his bike instead.