Got the chance of getting a nice muddy local route in today, taking in all the local woods, paths and bridleways. Hard going for the most part in the thick mud but worth every minute of effort and home in time to watch the last half hour of the Tour of Britain live.
After spending ages planning a cracker of a local route including a pie shop stop and covering around 27 miles, the reality turned out somewhat different.
Meeting Carl and Iwan in Ffynnongroyw the route started off in sunshine and we all thought that's the way it was going to stay. Within minutes of starting the clouds came over and the temperature dropped. At the top of the first wooded climb of the day, some one mile from the start the rain came, light at first, maybe just a shower.... We pushed on.
After just 2 1/2 miles at the end of the second climb the heavens opened and when I say "Opened" I mean "OPENED!!!".
Taking shelter under some feeble little bushes thinking it may blow over, it didn't for over one hour, suddenly it baited, so wet and cold we continued.
Deciding to cut the planned route short and do a smaller route was a very wise choice and as we got to the highest point of the ride the rain started again, this time torrential, it belted us from above just in time for a technical singletrack section through another wooded section complete with wet greasy rocks and tree roots, that's where Iwan's chain broke and also resulted in a bent front mech. The rain hammered down as the chain was fixed but the bent mech meant no front shifting.
The remaining part of the ride was mostly downhill on small country lanes to get back to the cars.