The ice has gone, well for the moment so I sure as hell wasn’t missing the opportunity to get back in the saddle and get some miles under my belt. Saturday was out for me as I was taking the boys to see Santa at Mulgavie and get the first of my Xmas dinners. So Sunday it was, although due to Callum having rugby training 10-11am we decided on a later start at noon.
For some mad crazy whacky reason Gilly allowed Stevie to pick the route! Boy was he going to regret that decision! Let me cast your memory back to the last time Stevie picked the route……….. in attendance that day was myself, Stevie and Ian Hockey. Ian had to be back for midday as he had guests up from England and they were heading out so the plan was to do 30-40 miles leaving enough time for Ian to get back to his guests. That day the 30-40 miles turned into 65.5 miles! Let me present appendix 1 your honor…….. Appendix 1.
I left my house at 11.50am and set about tackling the climb from the Hamilton backroad bridge to Muttonhole road where I met up with Stevie and Gilly. After asking Stevie what the planned route was for today I knew by look on his face and wry smile that this wasn’t going to be a stroll in the park!
So basically to cut a long story short we spent the next 48 miles climbing hill after hill, and I’m not talking about small inclines here! These were tough long steep climbs which is part of Stevie’s training route which goes some way to explaining the form he’s currently in!
I can’t really be arsed running through the whole route with you so you can check it out by clicking on the link at the end of the page.
On one of the climbs Stevie and I dropped Gilly which is a very rare thing to do, nearly as rare as Alan McKee making it out on his bike these days! We slowed down once we realised, looking round there was no sign of him…… we waited, waited and waited a little longer and still no sign so we turned back and about a mile back down the road was Gilly attending to a puncture. Apparently he had shouted on us but we never heard him and continued on. Twice we climbed that bloody hill Gilly! Lol
Gilly was toiling a wee bit today hitting cramp on a few of the hills and wasn’t helped by his trusty winter stead playing up and not changing gears when asked nicely to do so.
We stooped on Muttonhole road to say our goodbyes, I didn’t hang about long as the light was fading rapidly and I didn’t have any lights with me. I was my own pet hate……….it was getting dark, I had no lights and was dressed in black! That final climb over the backroads was tough in the head wind on my own and rapidly running out of energy! I managed to arrive back safely at my house and literally fell in the door!
All in all it was a great but tough day climbing rattling in 48.08 miles with an average speed of 12.2mph. The average speed down to the amount of climbing! Click on the Garmin link below to see the full route and take a look at the elevation chart! The weather was kind to us dry, cold and windy with some real ice cold winds at times.
Enjoying a well earned Highland Park or two as we speak.
Stevie has been penciled in to pick the route again first week in December 2024, subject to change (will not be making date any earlier but it may be put back!)