Monthly Archives: October 2011

Pedal with Dan…

Regardless of the weather yesterday (which cleared up pretty quickly) I did go out for a pedal with Dan. We explored some new routes this time to the south of Hagley heading over towards Broome and Holy Cross.

After the trauma that is crossing the main A456 that is the Hagley Road, it was all quiet lanes and peaceful bridleways.

Dan had a good time and only fell off once!

A few photos of our little 7 mile jaunt.

Drink stop

Drink stop near Belbroughton.


The photo above is taken on a Bridleway called Horsall Lane.

Eco house

Dan pointing out a very Eco friendly property, 2 wind turbines and a boat load of solar panels!

Another drink stop

This is another drink stop this time on a very well paved bridleway near Holy Cross.

Hagley Ice Cream stop

Then after 7 miles it was back into Hagley for the obligatory post ride Ice Cream. Even in October!

There was an opportunity to go quite a bit further on some other off road routes I’d spied while doing a map recce, but I’m always concious that Dan is only 4 years old and I don’t want to get too far out and him pronounce he’s tired and wants to stop. That’s the nightmare scenario. 7 miles is ok though.

 Helmet Hair

We got our bikes washed as soon as we got in, then kit in the washer and jumped in the shower. Dan had a bad case of helmet hair as you can see in the photo above!

A nice 2 hours out over new territory.

Later that day me and my daughter Fay took the hounds for a nice walk and watched the sunset over the woods and the Starlings roosting, they always put on a good show! We were out for 90 minutes for 5 miles.

Not a bad day all told. Now I just need to get through this week and I have some me time coming up!


A wet Sunday in Hagley…

Opening the curtains this morning revealed…precisely nothing. A very grey day with the Clent Hills totally invisible due to very low cloud which is intent on dumping its contents on us!

Yesterday’s trials at the North Midlands School of Rugby went very well. For once the Club and County Coaches seem to have got the message about the standard of player we’re looking for and sent us a good bunch. We only de-selected a small number as most of the lads were displaying the kind of potential we can work with.

A few piccies of my MTB ride from Friday as promised.

The local high point.

Look at the mist in the valley. Very pretty.


The local farmers are getting the spuds in now, check out the pile in the trailer!

Into the Sun

The picture of the bridleway above was attempt at taking a cool “into the sun” image. Epic fail! The bridleway is actually an old Roman Road.

Roman Road

This is the same Roman Road a bit further along looking down toward Hagley actually pretty much towards my house.

Yours truly by one of  the local lakes

This lake above is very busy with water fowl. There is a very tame family of Swans on there.

Local residents

A few tame Swans.

The view

The photo above is looking back towards the Roman Road which is just below the tree line. My bike is parked actually about a quarter of a mile, probably less in fact, from my new house.

Bike at home

The bike at home apres pedal. Pretty dirty, I must clean it today! Maybe after I’ve pedalled with Dan if the weather decides to stop raining. I’d go out in it, but wifey may object to Dan going out in it!

I thought I’d finish with a photo of my “Man Cave” filled with bikes and my home made work bench.

Man Cave


Off out in a bit to Worcester Warriors home ground of 6 Ways to coach at the North Midlands School of Rugby trials. It’s the first step on the Elite Player Pathway for future England players and I’m really looking forward to a good day.

I got out on a very quick MTB ride yesterday, did my morale no end of good. I’ll post about that tomorrow after I’m back from a pedal with Dan.


A right old peasouper today, just another positive for being off the bike this week! But it looks like it’s going to be a nice day! I’ve done a bit of restructuring on my MTB kit, just for something to do. I’ll reveal all when I’ve taken some pictures and given it a shakedown ride.


Not long for some “me time”…

Looks like it’ll be Monday that I’ll be perched back upon some high quality leather that is my Brooks Saddle. It’ll be my last week at work before a genuine break. Some “me” time. Some “please my bloody self time”, of which I’ve had precisely zero of this year for one reason or another. A whole week and a bit off!

I’m already planning Mountain Bike rides in my locale, all trails I haven’t seen before. Also while out walking the dogs in the evening I’m starting to long wistfully about some night rides. I think my bloody awful road commute has reinforced my love of Mountain Biking. It really has knocked the joy out of cycling for me at the moment. But some MTBing will sort that. Just a weeks commuting to endure, just a week…

What Mountain Bike.

No cycling to report because of Dan’s accident. Not much of anything to report really, apart from a weight loss through cycling article I wrote for What Mountain Bike being published in the November’s edition (issue 128) which is out now.

It was originally written as a Blog for them but Matt the editor decided to whack it in the Magazine itself much to my surprise. Along with one of Jo Burt’s famous illustrations created specially for the piece.

For all non Mountainbikers he’s the creator of Mint Sauce who is in my opinion the Spiritual Guardian of Mountain Biking. Check Mint Sauce out. You might get it, you might not. He really isn’t just a Sheep who rides a MTB!

When the next issue of WMB is out next month I’ll put the article up here after I’ve checked it’s ok with Matt.

At home.

I’m working from home today looking after Dan. He had an accident yesterday evening. During our walk we stopped to say hello to the local horses and one of them swung its head around and gave Dan an almighty whack. It knocked him over, broke some teeth and gave him concussion! Only Dan…

Anyway, this means no cycle commute, which looking at the weather is no bad thing. It’s also no bad thing as I’m really struggling to enjoy this new route to work. Actually I hate it. All dual carriageway fast moving traffic that requires an attention I’m not used to on my many old routes. The sad thing is there is no other practical way of pedalling to and from work unlike my old location where I had an option of the canal, country lanes or even the Bristol Road with cycle lanes. I’m entirely mixing it with the traffic here which even at 0500hrs is very very busy for some strange reason.

There is also no flats, it’s all uphill at 8 to 9mph or downhill at 25 – 35mph, there’s absolutely no happy medium bowling along at a steady 14 to 18mph.

Whinge over for the day, back to Dan.