I posted this on the forum last year, the day after I got my p7.....
This morning, as the weather was so nice I thought I would take the long route to work, and get to know my new "friend".
The first part of my commute is a long steady climb out of Brighton, up to the a27. The traffic was bad as the school run was in full swing, plenty of idiots in boxes not looking where they were going.
Once past the roundabout, things start to get prettier, over to my left I had a hazy view of the coast over the Worthing. On a clear day, the Isle of Wight can be clearly seen in the distance. And over on my right, the South Downs. Mist was hanging about in the valleys, making the hilltops look like islands.
After a while the cycle path up to Devils Dyke veers off to the left, at last giving me freedom to enjoy my ride without traffic. The sweat is starting to flow now as I am still climbing from sea level. I pass a few dog walkers, and exchange greetings. Everyone is in a good mood today.
A few miles later, I reach devils dyke, where I turn left onto the South Downs Way, where the fun really begins Cool The track starts of grass until the first gate, where the trail starts to incline downwards. As speed increases my shins are splashed with dew from the wet grass. Suddenly the track splits three ways, each with loose rocks and gulleys. It is fun to be riding a rigid bike again!
Now, I'm climbing again. The trail now is a jeep track. Traction is limited on the loose surface, so I spin my way to the crest of the hill, before another downhill begins. I fly by a heard of cows, most of which do not even look at what is causing the commotion. The track takes a turn to the left, and the rigid forks track perfectly into the berm that has formed next to the trail.
After pausing at the bottom to have a refreshing drink, I look over towards Brighton. It is all but obscured under a shroud of haze. Only the tallest buildings can be seen poking there heads above the morning smog.
I clip back in and begin the last climb up towards the mast at Truleigh Hill. This is proper mint sauce country, complete with a bi-plane making its way to Shoreham Airport. It's really warm now as I crest the hill, my back is drenched, and drops fall from the pads on my helmet, splashing onto the top tube.
At the top, I click down a few gears, I readiness for the biggest decent of the day. I pick up speed past the youth hostel. I do the obligatory little jump off the man hole, and i'm grinning like a loon. The track turns into tarmac for a mile or so, but it's really fast, and i'm doing 40 mph now, the wind cooling me down after all the exertion.
Then I leave the South Downs Way, and plunge down a rocky loose decent, though the trees, and down into the Adur Valley. A few miles of tarmac now through Upper Beeding, and the outskirts of Steyning.
Once through Steyning, I'm on the Downslink Trail towards my destination. For the first mile or so, it's still tarmac, and rounding a corner I see someone with what looks like a young pony. I slow down to walking pace and as I get closer I see that it's a baby Alpaca. I stop, and talk with owner, and of course give the four month old Alpaca (who is called Petula) plenty of fuss. Nice.
After passing the stinky sewage works, I'm back onto the rough stuff along a farm road for a mile or so, before the trail turns sharply to the right, decending though fields of stubble. The sound of the gravel pinging off the downtube frightens a flock of rooks, which noisely take to the sky, and swirl around like black bin bags in a wind.
Then the last few miles along a disused railway track. Easy going now, the trees giving me shelter from the now suprisingly hot sun.
One final uphill and I wheel into Henfiled 16 miles later. And best of all, the kettles on
WANTED: Purple Hope Ti-Glide rear hub (or complete wheel)
1997 Pace RC200 F6 viewtopic.php?t=168748
1995 Orange P7, 1999 Orange MrXC, 1999 DeKerf Generation.