Peacocks and Kites Audax: Saturday



S

Simon Bennett

Guest
Any takers? If so, I'll see you there. Looks like it's going to be a
sweltering weekend...
 
M

MartinM

Guest
Simon Bennett wrote:
> Any takers? If so, I'll see you there. Looks like it's going to be a
> sweltering weekend...


3900m? I'm supposed to be resting for La Marmotte ;-)
working Saturday anyway, then the easy (ie non Grimpeur) Battle and
Back 200 Sunday

have fun, won't be venturing into WelshWaleslookyoubach until next
year's Bryan Chapman
 
I

Ian Blake

Guest
On 29 Jun 2006 00:27:07 -0700, "MartinM" <[email protected]> wrote:

>Simon Bennett wrote:
>> Any takers? If so, I'll see you there. Looks like it's going to be a
>> sweltering weekend...

>
>3900m? I'm supposed to be resting for La Marmotte ;-)
>working Saturday anyway, then the easy (ie non Grimpeur) Battle and
>Back 200 Sunday
>


Its not that hilly. Can only thnk of four significant climbs
Ystradfellte, Ffarmers (peacocks), Ysbyty Ystwyth and Torpantau.

Only Torpantau is truly nasty, mostly due to its position towards the
end of the ride. Several years ago I arrived at the Talybont control
very hungry to be told a coach party just arrived no food for at least
two hours. Not a nice climb when hungry and tired (150 miles in the
legs).

I will be trundling around towards the back. The big question is will
I get to the start in time. Last year I was late. A few years ago I
appeared to arrive on time then went home to have breakfast before
heading up the valley.
 
S

Simon Bennett

Guest
Ian Blake wrote:

> I will be trundling around towards the back. The big question is will
> I get to the start in time. Last year I was late. A few years ago I
> appeared to arrive on time then went home to have breakfast before
> heading up the valley.


I'll see you there, Ian. I'm staying with a friend in Cardiff overnight. I
don't know how I'll be riding -- I was up at 4am this morning with the
seagulls outside going mad, and with another early start tomorrow, I'm going
to be knackered before I start!

I'll be riding a multi-coloured Eddy Merckx and sporting my new Decathlon
top (see above).
 
M

MSeries

Guest
Simon Bennett wrote:
> Ian Blake wrote:
>
> > I will be trundling around towards the back. The big question is will
> > I get to the start in time. Last year I was late. A few years ago I
> > appeared to arrive on time then went home to have breakfast before
> > heading up the valley.

>
> I'll see you there, Ian. I'm staying with a friend in Cardiff overnight. I
> don't know how I'll be riding -- I was up at 4am this morning with the
> seagulls outside going mad, and with another early start tomorrow, I'm going
> to be knackered before I start!
>
> I'll be riding a multi-coloured Eddy Merckx and sporting my new Decathlon
> top (see above).


Good luck and enjoy it Simon. Will you email me so I get your addy
please ?
 
I

Ian Blake

Guest
On Thu, 29 Jun 2006 10:04:38 +0100, Ian Blake <[email protected]>
wrote:

>Its not that hilly. Can only thnk of four significant climbs
>Ystradfellte, Ffarmers (peacocks), Ysbyty Ystwyth and Torpantau.


I should of said Pontrhydygroes rather than Ysbyty Ystwyth. YY is the
hill in the opposite direction.

>
>Only Torpantau is truly nasty, mostly due to its position towards the
>end of the ride. Several years ago I arrived at the Talybont control
>very hungry to be told a coach party just arrived no food for at least
>two hours. Not a nice climb when hungry and tired (150 miles in the
>legs).
>
>I will be trundling around towards the back. The big question is will
>I get to the start in time. Last year I was late. A few years ago I


So it happened I got up early enough to ride to the start on time.
Simon collected his Brevet card in front of me so I introduced myself.
Shortly afterwards we set off. I never ride well from an early start
so by the time we left the village everybody else was out of sight. I
intended to trundle around but I did not expect to be dropped that
quickly. So I continue up through the Taff and Cynon valleys to the
real start of the Audax. Peacocks and Kites started as a 300km
version of the Mid-Wales Desert 200km which is one of the nicest audax
rides (highly recommended). So I ride through Penderyn and past
Ystradfellte and down the devils elbow to Sennibridge where I joined
the 200k route, straight down the A40 (very quiet this early) to the
first control in Llandovery. As I arrived four other riders were
finishing their breakfast and left before my beans on toast arrived.

So I set off from the West End cafe alone. At this point the 300k
departs from the 200k which goes past Llyn Brianne. So I head off to
the Dolcothi(?) gold mine to Ffarmers and a large hill over to
Llandewi Brefi (The place without a signpost - I never thought St
David scholars were the type to pinch signs). Then along the Teifi to
the control in Tregaron. It was too early for lunch so I rode on to
Pontrhydfendigaid where I stopped at the Black Lion for lunch.

So I continue through Pontrhydygroes and shortly find myself in the
granniest of granny gears as I cross over the mountain road. It
always strikes me as perverse that it is easier to cross over to
Devils Bridge in the next (Rheidol) valley than stay in the Ystwyth
valley with its very steep hill. I like riding through the Ystwyth
valley with its disused lead mine. It is fantastic in the rain, it
takes on a wonderful bleak quality. So I am particularly annoyed to
being roasted alive. As the river between the mountains starts
flowing East instead of West I know I have made one of the easiest
valley changes in Wales. I was in the Ystwyth and now the Elan. I
see another rider infront of me and despite feeling awful I knew there
is always somebody worse off than me and say hello as I pass him. As I
reach Pont y Elan I shout Oi to attract Mark and Lou(?) who were
heading in the wrong direction. Surprising there was quite a lot of
water in the Elan valley reservoirs. I like this road lots of easy
hair pins. I arrive at the Elan valley visitor centre where some
other riders were just leaving.

As I am eating my cake and drinking my tea. Mark, Lou and Mr X
arrive. X departs first. I depart with Mark and Lou. When we arrive
at the A470 I gently pull away from Mark and shortly catch and pass X.
I normally blast along this section but decided that given the heat
that would be a silly thing to do. Even so my stomach was feeling
very warm. I am pleased to arrive at Talybont on Usk. I order soup
which was a good choice. The salt balanced my stomach which was full
of sweet energy drink. Should of used Isotonic today.

As I was leaving the other three arrived. I ride steadily on until
the road turns left and Torpantau confronts me. Ok legs, let it
happen, what do mean? no. So I went for a short steep walk. Ok
Torpantau often defeats me. I was less happy when I could not climb
out of Pontsticill. After that my legs returned and return down the
A4054 back to Tongwynlais in a poor but acceptable time.

I ride home and go to sleep.
 
M

MartinM

Guest
Ian Blake wrote:

I like riding through the Ystwyth
> valley with its disused lead mine. It is fantastic in the rain, it
> takes on a wonderful bleak quality. So I am particularly annoyed to
> being roasted alive. As the river between the mountains starts
> flowing East instead of West I know I have made one of the easiest
> valley changes in Wales. I was in the Ystwyth and now the Elan. I
> see another rider infront of me and despite feeling awful I knew there
> is always somebody worse off than me and say hello as I pass him. As I
> reach Pont y Elan I shout Oi to attract Mark and Lou(?) who were
> heading in the wrong direction. Surprising there was quite a lot of
> water in the Elan valley reservoirs.


Nice report, Ysbytw Ystwyth, I think I remember walking that ;-(

Cymywstwyth was my favourite bit of the Elenith (the mines are
impressive inside too); and the Elan valley was my first ever cycling
trip to Wales (in March, with A Lot of water, awesome). I'm so inspired
by these tales of Wales I'll have to do the Bryan Chapman next year