Saturday, 14 December 2013

Cold days and making it up as you go...

Over the last couple of weeks demands of work, and partly the rotten weather, have stopped me getting out on the bike. This time of year it's rotten dark by the time I've finished work, so there's no evening riding to be done. Today was about 6-7 degrees but, with the forcast predicting a less than 20% chance of rain, I layered up and headed out. I didn't have a route planned, just made it up as I went along. The roads around York were pretty packed with people heading off to do some Christmas shopping at the various out of town retail parks, but once I was away from the ringroad and bypass the roads were brilliantly quiet.

These photos, taken near the top of Garrowby Hill east of York give a good indication of why riding, even on a cold day, is such a joy:

The views are stunning and the road sweeps challengingly right to left down a steep hill. At the bottom the views ahead across sweeping bends on the road towards Stamford Bridge make for an exhilerating ride. It was bit twitchy on the cold wet surface though. 


  1. Such a pretty area, it that a valley in the distance or are you on a bit of a rise?

    Do you have to worry about grave on the roads at this time of year? I ask because now that our snow has melted there is a ton of gravel piled up on the roads. They don't use salt on the roads in Oregon for melting the ice so they use a lot of gravel for traction instead.

    Glad you got out for a ride. Thanks for the pictures.

  2. I'm glad you like the photos. They're not best quality as I took them using my phone. I intend to invest in a GoPro camera in the new year so I'll be posting some video footage.

    I was at an elevation of a few hundred feet witha a view over part of the Vale of York which is a flat glacial plain which lies between the hills of the North York Moors and the East Yorkshire Wolds on the East and the Yorkshire Dales to the West.

    We don't use gravel for traction but it can build up at some bends and road junctions, so you have to be aware of it.

    When it gets below freezing the gritting lorries go out spreading a mixture of sand and salt on the road. The main problem with that is the damage it can do to paint work and chrome. Also, because of budget cuts the roads are in pretty poor condition and potholes are a real hazard.