Monday, 18 March 2013

A snowy, hilly Delightful Dales 200k Audax

I was nervous about entering this event as I knew the reputation of it for being very hilly and I am not a natural hill climber at all. But always one for a challenge and knowing the only way I will get better at hills is to ride them I entered and asked Ali if she could give me a lift up (I didn't fancy riding there are back to such a hilly event).

Getting to the start and it was snowing, worried I didn't have enough layers, after putting all mine on, I borrowed Ali's waterproof and put it in my bag as a spare layer. Setting off I was beginning to wonder what I was doing as the snow kept falling but we were making good time. After Gargrave I was on roads I didn't know and it had stopped snowing so I could enjoy the views. Getting to the first huge hill of the day, Park Rash, it was down to my lowest gear and trying not to topple over sideways. As we (me and Rich and Shona from Keep Pedalling) got to the top we were faced with a road blanketed in snow. We were soon off the bikes and pushing, road bikes and snow not being very well suited. After walking over the top and partway down we were soon back on the bikes and the sun even came out.

A quick stop at the first control before a cake stop at Dales Bike Centre, where it was warm enough to sit outside, had us smiling. The next section was undulating, still lots of steep hills though, and it was lovely to walk into the next pub to have the landlady offering us a choice of sandwiches.

Then it was time for the Coal Road, we all had a 'rest'  at the very steep bit at the bottom and we were soon surrounded by snow. Fortunately this time there were tracks to follow through it.

Coming down was an interesting experience, once the snow cleared it was a twisty steep descent which involved holding onto the brakes the whole way down, this was the first time my hands got cold! I'd like to say from here it was all downhill but not lots more climbing to get to Three Peaks Country where we had a nice long downhill.

Undulating from there to Clitheroe and I was on roads that I knew, we finished at 7:15pm so 11hrs45mins after we started, a long and epic day!


  1. Fantastic to have done it, and climbed half way up Everest as well. It must have been very slippery with all that snow. Certainly one to remember.

  2. Very nice performance! It must've been tough ;-)

    Greetings from The Netherlands,

  3. Epic day out, made more memorable by the conditions.

  4. AMY Have you any idea just how Obsessive you are?? you really are going to suffer in later life!!!