Sunday, 23 December 2012

Palefish Cycle Club Christmas bimble

I can't believe a year has passed since the big Christmas ride from Vita last year. It certainly has been a busy year, but I think I'll save those ramblings for another post!

This years Christmas ride started at the 12th Man in Greasby. On the club Facebook page 17 had signed up, a great number for this time of year. Also great seeing as the weather had been atrocious all week with rain and floods dominating the conversations.
When I woke up, the rain had stopped, but there was quite a strong wind. When I checked my weather App is showed 50kph gusts!!
Anyway, There were  eventually 16 of us who left to go to Eureka for Mince pies and Mulled wine. ( with the unfortunate absence of Badders today after a date with Mr Guinness the previous night!)
The First few miles were challenging, most of the time riding into a strong headwind, but once we were in the lanes after Heswall the going became a little easier. But with the shelter of the wind from the high hedges, came the risk of puncture! After some biblical rain this week, there were a few large lakes to traverse, I must say I was impressed with Stubsy's feet up style, and just to add to the debris and water the hedges had recently been cut, spreading tyre piercing hawthorns all over the road.
We all made it through the lanes onto the Chester high road, where I became the first victim to the Hawthorn! Just as we were pulling away from the junction, I got the distinctive "loose" feeling from the rear of the bike, and with just a quarter of a mile to go, had to get off and walk! On inspection of the inside of the tyre, in the Eureka Cafe yard, I had indeed succumbed to the mighty hawthorn! In fact it wasn't that big, but it was big enough to  put a hole in the tube.
After replacing the tube, and cleaning up, as the bike isn't in the best state it could be,(instead of cleaning thoroughly after each ride, another dose of oil on the chain is about as far as it goes. But this leads to an extremely messy tube change!) I had a chance to join the throng of cyclists in the cafe.

Busy in Eureka today (we took up three Tables!)
I forgot to mention that there had been a suggestion that we should Christmas up our bikes for the ride.
Tim won the Gold medal for effort, as cycling with a beard seemed to be a little difficult at times, especially when looking over your shoulder, and breathing, apparently! Jon also has to get a mention, for wearing his Santa jacket all the way round, not very breathable material I believe.

Santa Tim

Most of the Gang, Thanks to Anne from Eureka for taking the Photo.
Getting ready to head home.

After a mince pie and some mulled wine, we headed off home. We rode down the High Road and then turned off towards Willaston. People started to leave the group from here. The weather was on our side now, and with mulled wine fuel on board, the miles sped by. 

Spinning through the lanes

Jon and his Santa Suit!

The Second puncture of the day came just after Thornton Hough. Rob was the Victim this time, and whilst we were waiting for the repair, Graham "David Bailey" got all arty with his photos!

Mirror Mirror on the road.......

Graham decided to ride ahead to get some more photos, he had taken the ones at the rear of the group, and now wanted some of us riding towards him. To say things didn't go to plan are an understatement. First off, he rode ahead, only for the camera not to work quickly enough, then after riding ahead again, we rounded a corner to find Graham walking back down the road searching for something. First of all we all thought he had  fallen off, but once we stopped we could see the distraught look on his face, as he was looking for his phone which had fallen out of his unzipped pocket as he raced ahead to get "the shot!" Unbelievably he found it, and it still worked! So off he sped again, with his pocket zipped this time, and managed to get a great action shot of Owen climbing out of Barnston Dip. 

However, one rider, Pauric, didn't make the photo area, as he had become the third rider to suffer from a puncture! Once fixed we all headed back to the 12th Man without incident!
The ride time for today was only 2 hours, however the total time out was nearer 4, and for once not all of the time was spent in the Cafe!!!
Anyway it was great to have a nice social spin, even if it was a little eventful, and sign off the year with a great group of lads. 
Back at the 12th Man

I'm not sure when the next ride will be for me, but I know some of the lads were talking of riding later in the week. Keep your eyes peeled on the club facebook page for details.

Finally, I would like to wish everyone a very Merry Christmas, and a fantastic New Year.

Festive bike!

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