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PostPosted: Mon Aug 29, 2011 12:36 pm 
MacRetro rider
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Joined: Thu Dec 24, 2009 1:49 pm
Posts: 183
Location: Democratic republic of Coquetdale
"Weather was kind": not quite what I thought, as I passed the trout when we rode along the side of the fence.
- was sure I saw a fin as we slogged against the tide en route to the Blue man!


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PostPosted: Mon Aug 29, 2011 12:52 pm 
NE, North and West Yorks AEC
NE, North and West Yorks AEC
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Joined: Tue Aug 04, 2009 8:33 pm
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Location: By the sea
Simonside resident wrote:
"Weather was kind": not quite what I thought, as I passed the trout when we rode along the side of the fence.
- was sure I saw a fin as we slogged against the tide en route to the Blue man!


You must be forgetting I'm a refugee from Manchester (the rainy city) so these are summer conditions to me :lol:


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PostPosted: Mon Aug 29, 2011 5:22 pm 
MacRetro rider
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Joined: Fri Feb 09, 2007 4:16 pm
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That looked brilliant, I wish north englandshire wasn't so far south :roll:

A big surprise was Dr S on a rigid bike, i though he'd sworn off them due to wrist problems 8)


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PostPosted: Mon Aug 29, 2011 6:28 pm 
retrobike rider / Gold Trader
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Joined: Tue Nov 03, 2009 10:00 pm
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Location: Newcastle Upon Tyne
Enjoyed the pics :)


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PostPosted: Tue Aug 30, 2011 8:16 am 
retrobike rider / Gold Trader
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Joined: Mon Oct 15, 2007 9:05 pm
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Hi all, sorry for the news black out, had a hectic weekend (or I have been in hiding fearing revenge attacks for dragging you over the Blue Man) :lol:

A few thoughts.....
Firstly a big thanks to everyone who came along and took part with good humor in very trying circumstances. Extra big thanks to Vern for taking some cracking pics.

The Blue Man. I guess this is the section that this ride will be remembered by. With the benefit of hindsight, its probably not a trail to be tackled with legs that have slogged 22 miles through deep mud, knee deep water and some impressive hills. For those reading who have never riden the Blue Man... well, let me tell you, its tough as hell. It is probably the hardest trail I have riden in my 25 years of MTB- and it has really deteriorated in the last 20 years since I last rode it, although it was always bad. I think Ollie summed it up best with 'If it just relented for half a mile, I think I can make it to the end'. :P

That said, I always feel that it's a good thing to step out of your comfort zone every now and then. As with last years 'Green Valley of Death' and our first Cut Gate epic a few years back, this ride was as far removed from the trail centre riding that most folk do these days, as you can get even though we could see the fringes of Dalby over on the Horizon, it is millionmiles away in terms of difficulty.
The route also had a true oldskool feel about it- that sense of adventure, adversity, misadventure and hardship that, to me at least represented the kind of riding we did in the early days.

Thoughts on machinary and equipment... I chose to ride a full rigid set up for starters. Turning up on something with lots of travel would have taken something away from the experience I think. Yes, my battered left wrist gave me much discomfort throughout the day, but over the rocks of the last 5 miles I was greatful for the unrivalled accuracy that a rigid fork provides. Falling off onto those rocks would be a painfull experience- especially as I had run out of brakes some hours before.

Also my thoughts on SPDs.... Like lycra, they are for roadbikes! Flats and grippy shoes are king for rough trails. Skidding around on cleated shoes and constant re-engaging into pedals make for an experience harder than it needs be!

To sum up.... Yes it was hard work but very rewarding. Once again we proved that old bikes are just as capable in the right hands. Would I go back? Not this week, maybe not for another 15 years, but hell yeah I'll be back again one day.

I'd say that everyone who rode on saturday can stand with heads held high amongst their peers. Be proud that you not only completed such a tough route, but did it in style, with grace and in good humour. Also, revel in the fact that despite the horrendous ground conditions and terrain, that there was not a single mechanical or puncture, or accident. A pretty amazing feat.

Si


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PostPosted: Tue Aug 30, 2011 10:20 am 
MacRetro rider
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Joined: Fri Mar 09, 2007 2:11 pm
Posts: 8700
Location: DUNDEE
That looks and sounds like it was a complete Epic in every way, great pics in the heather too.


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 Post subject: blue man
PostPosted: Tue Aug 30, 2011 5:19 pm 
retrobike rider
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Joined: Fri Mar 13, 2009 7:19 pm
Posts: 3133
Location: Leeds, for ages!
many thanks si for the ride. it was as tough as it gets for me! but, i enjoyed it all the same. 8)

good point, no mechanicals or flats to speak of although i pushed the last few miles and any other tricky bits :wink:

you further-up- north blokes are a truly at the top of your game for getting through the blue man!

my shoes are still drying out.

see you all again soon*











*at a bone-dry trail centre in temperatures no less than 25 degrees'c'.

:lol:


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PostPosted: Wed Aug 31, 2011 8:15 am 
retrobike rider / Gold Trader
retrobike rider / Gold Trader

Joined: Mon Oct 15, 2007 9:05 pm
Posts: 9245
I think the next one is going to be up this way Mark. Looking like a joint effort with those hairy MacRetro types. Vern is sorting a date I think but back end of september looks likely.

Si

Ps, sorry I didn't get to say goodbye on sat, by the time i had peeled off the muck and got changed you were gone. :oops:


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PostPosted: Wed Aug 31, 2011 9:43 am 
Windmilling for a Scotch Egg
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Joined: Tue Feb 15, 2011 10:27 am
Posts: 4840
Location: Huddersfield, West Yorkshire
I didn't go on this ride but I think all that completed it need a special badge awarded to them - "Swamp Monster" or "Blue Man Rider".
If it was as epic as it sounds it would be very fitting to be able to recognise these superhuman riders more easily. :-D


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PostPosted: Wed Aug 31, 2011 10:06 am 
retrobike rider / Gold Trader
retrobike rider / Gold Trader

Joined: Mon Oct 15, 2007 9:05 pm
Posts: 9245
You don't need a badge to identify these people. Just look for the hollow shell shocked stares, a twitch, fierce shaking, rocking and insane mumbling. :lol:


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