This weekend was brilliant for many reason. Good rides, blue skies and summer bikes. With each of us going to Mallorca in a couple of months we decided to head to the hills.
We drove out to Colwyn bay with the plan to ride to Llandudno to split off do some loops of the Great Orme and then meet for breakfast and the pedal back.
The ride from Colwyn Bay wasn’t long. Only about 12 miles all flat and on a cycle path but this made for a chatty ride which is what we wanted and it also warms the legs up before the Orme.
It was a cold start getting ready to ride and I wasn’t look forward to it at all but once we got going it wasn’t an issue and it was meant to get slightly warmer. Plus doing hill loops you’re bound to warm up!
We got into Llandudno and were rolling along the coast and it had turned into such a nice day! The sky was blue, the sun was out and it had such a positive impact on us all. Just the joy of all being out on our bikes again and the sun kind of gave us the feeling that winter is over and the better weather is coming put massive smiles on each of our faces.
Instagram > Strava
I decided to do one loop of each. My aim was to get a PB doing he first loop and then I’d just be happy with getting to the top of the summit in general. I also wanted to take some pictures on the second loop which was another reason I didn’t go for a PB because….
I got to the cafe and I uploaded my ride to strava then as my Garmin wasn’t far off dying and also to see if I got any PBs.
I got a PB around the coastline by a few minutes so I was chuffed with that!
But we haven’t taken any pictures yet!
We were going to head back the same way but we thought of another we can go back since we had a local with us who could take us back to where needed.
The ride back was great, it was a chatty ride again and it had warmed up. Spring is definitely on it’s way!
When we got back to the car we finished off with some coffee and everyone else uploaded their rides to Strava to see what they got and we all did ace, what a way to finish the day off!
Another thing what made the day good for me it was the return of the Summer bike, the Propel. I’d not ridden it since about September and I’ve been riding steel for the months in-between so this was another morale booster! It was also the only choice of bike I had as my new one isn’t built and the steel had been stripped down.
The epic-ness of the weekend didn’t end here though.
This was planned last minute on the way home from Saturdays ride.
A loop around Snowonia starting from Surf Snowdonia in Conwy. To avoid the foretasted rain we wanted to leave early so it was a 7am pickup with the plan to start for about half 8. The journey there includes a Mcdonalds, of course.
Again it was a cold start with it going to warm up throughout the day.
We head off from Conwy heading to the coast, it was a fairly flat start until the first hill of the day which was called Sychnant Pass. It fairly steady (for Wales) and was a nice climb to get the legs prepared for the day. At the top was the most amazing of views! It was really bright and sunny at the top and you could see right down to the coast.
Taking Drugs from a stranger – It wasn’t EPO
My back really started to hurt going up and I asked Rach for some painkillers at the top but she didn’t have any. A couple of women mentioned how good the view was at the top and they overheard I was after painkillers and they kindly offered me some. They were somewhat odd and I wouldn’t usually take pills of strangers but the need for them strongly outweighed this so I did! They did the job and it definitely eased the pain for the day.
We then descended to the coast and it wasn’t long before we were climbing again. This time the climb was on very quiet lines I don’t think we saw a car here! It was very gradual but long and kicked up in some sections. A couple of occasions my wheel spun out as the roads were slippy so I did walk the last few meters twice so it wasn’t eating tarmac.
When we started to head away from the coast it was really cloudy and moody looking and we could see on the mountains that there was still snow on the top, it looked quite surreal actually. Luckily it was still warm and the chance of rain was small so we didn’t need to worry about the weather even though it looked like there could be a storm any minute.
It was rolling roads for the next few miles before we went for lunch which was a big descent down to where we were going to stop for some food.
We stopped in Llanberis near a lake for some food but we didn’t want to have too much knowing we had the biggest climb of the day shortly approaching.
Pen-y pass was the climb which is actually the road to the car park to climb Snowdon. It was a 3 mile climb with an average of 5% but kicks up towards the end. However due to the beauty of the nature around you it was quite easy to be distracted.
At the top looked amazing even though you couldn’t see much. It was foggy and cloudy but looked really moody, it was pretty amazing! Sadly, I was enjoying the descent too much to stop and take a picture!
The day flew by, we were always making good progress and to finish it was mostly downhill or flat all the way back to the car. Just as we got back it did start to rain which was nice to know we timed the ride well.
The things a riding a bike can do for you
Another great day on the bike which made for a truly epic weekend. I was on such a natural high from the day before too, it’s crazy what a bike ride can do for the mind. I take it for granted throughout the summer but when you’ve had months of grey skies, rain and cold rides a ride like this really does do wonders for you. It’s the little things eh.