Progress so far...

June 30th 2009 - 22 stone 4Ibs. Current weight - 17 stone 1Ib. Weight loss - 5 stone 3Ibs. Commuting miles - 3389.
Non commuting miles - 359. Mileage this week - 101 miles. Total mileage - 3748 miles.

Thursday, 11 March 2010

Over the hills and further away!

Just got back, all abluted now and sorted.

I've had an email from Matt at What Mountain Bike saying that my next Blog is now on line at: it is about a month behind this one so all of the drama of that Blog is well past now.

Onto this morning, up at roughly the same time as yesterday and I pedalled this route:

There was a hell of a frost last night and so the sky was gin clear. It is amazing what cloud cover does, plenty of it yesterday none today so I was pedalling at the beginning in the half light where as yesterday it was darkness.

Up over the Waseley's again which as Rafe will tell you is pretty much on my doorstep, 5 minutes pedal and you're into the hills.

This is the same shot as yesterday's piccy only with a bit of daylight, M5 Northbound in the background. It's a bit of a slog up to there with a bit of hike'a'bike involved, I'm still not fit or thin enough to pedal all the way to the top!


This picture is facing towards the Lickey's, the copse of trees in the distance is where Joolze had me pedalling up and down ad infinitum during the WMB photoshoot last month. You can see just how frosty it was this morning.

A swift downhill towards Clent then a bit of road work to get towards Walton Hill Clent. The lanes are very quiet around there and I saw virtually no cars.

Then a ball breaking climb from hell up towards the summit of Calcott Hill. Again I had to resort to Hike'a'bike, I'll get there eventually though! I was rewarded by a fantastic sunrise over the Waseley's as seen from the Clent Hill's. I'm no photographer though.

The downhill from there was a rollercoaster ride of large stones, berms, terrible cattle caused bogs, right angle turns that came upon you unseen and possible wrong turns into farm yards. This is why I love mountain biking!

What goes down has to go up. Or something like that! Another ball breaker climb up to the ride summit which is the top of Walton Hill, this started on lanes then they eventually ran out in the little Hamlet of Walton Pool and it turned into the narrowest bridleway I've ever encountered. My shoulders were touching the hedges on either side and it was impossible to pedal. Well impossible for me. So, yep you've guessed it, more Hike'a'bike until I reached the top of Walton Hill.

The piccy below is some of the houses at Walton Pool just before the Bridleway.

Once at the top I found the trig point and used my first app in anger on my new works IPhone. The compass. There were a lot of paths leading everywhere so I used the IPhone Compass and with my OS map I was carrying I found the right way down.

Another "all the fun of the fair" downhill off the top, a very narrow, very rutty type singletrack down to the lane towards Romsley. Just brilliant! There were a number of berms on it too which tested my skill a bit, but me and my Marin were as one. Man and machine in perfect harmony!

A lane pedal in now, through Romsley Village, over Romsley Hill and home.

Wifey had just cooked the kids a breakfast of Honey coated pancakes when I got in. I indulged too with a steaming hot cup of coffee to finish. A cracking pedal, very tough but what doesn't kill you makes stronger! Footage from the start of the pedal below. Play with the sound off!


  1. That profile just looks mean. off-road on grass too.

  2. My legs will be agreeing with you Red...

  3. I bet wen u started all this u thought u never in ure wildest dreams u wud b cycling 9.9 miles but climbing bastard hills like that an so u ad 2 get off but as someone once said 2 me small steps Clive

    A big pat on the back from me m8 well done

    Dont think my £56 ebay special Mountain bike wud b in one piece if I even remotely went off road lol

  4. Ta Les, the one hill I had to walk up I remember pedalling up with my mate about 12 years ago. It broke me then, but at least I pedalled all the way.

    I don't know what MTB you've got Les, you might have landed a bargain!

    I wouldn't pedal that route you on anything much under £350 to be honest.

    A bike advertised as a MTB that costs around £100 is not a bike, it's a bike shaped object and to be honest bloody dangerous off road.

  5. Yeah m8 ure rite there r pics on me blog it is a halfords appollo and ure right of road is not an option but I bought it 2 cycle 2 work but now I av me Scott Sub 10 wiv 700c by 32mm tyres which is great but any bit of ice ure off it, so wen like that bac 2 me cheapo mountain bike

    Marin r dogs m8

  6. looked like a nice ride clive, at the best time of the day too!, sunrises rock!

  7. Looking good Clive, good article as usual too. Hellish hills you ride up! Very impressed, must admit, I had a little snigger to myself, seeing you cycled near "Bell end" clearly I'm still a school boy who can laugh at "knob jokes" :)

  8. There's a not bad pub at Bell End called not surprisingly The Bell. Quite appropriately it is usually full of knobs! Nice Real Ale though.

    As the for the hills I had to walk some of them. Feeling it a tad this morning.