The Northern Rock Cyclone. How was your day?

So yesterday I rode the 63 mile cyclone, with 5 of my clubmates. The course was a difficult one for me, there was a boat load of climbing. I want you to see this: That’s a link to a map of the route and an elevation graph, nearly 3000 foot of climbing apparently.

I’ve made it fairly obvious that I had a cracking time of it. I remember the first nasty up just before the first timing check. Reaching the top making what can only be described as horse noises with the rest of my group far in front of me. The feeling at the top was positively euphoric. Odd for me, only a short time before a similar course with the Wansbeck CC had reduced me almost to tears… What kind of organisation thinks the feeding station belongs half way down a cracking descent too? Boo. Anyway, there we ran into Suzy Gonzales which was fab, I’ve missed her.

Before we set off from there an agreement was made to stop at somewhere called Kirkharle (sp?) for tea and cake and off we toddled, the land turned up and apart from some spankingly fun descents and a lovely compliment from fellow Vag Kevin that was about the only time I managed to ride with my group for long ( gosh, that doesn’t read like it should, they waited for me at the top of some of the worst ones, no-one got left behind). I’m glad about that, my idea of hell is being babied up a hill and it turns out that these wonderfully considerate people had realised this and left me to my own pace. Maybe that was what made that day so enjoyable?

Riding with Bob Melrose past a sign for Kirkharle I carried on up a hill thinking that I’d see them but I was wrong, back down again, yup. I liked it so much I did it twice.. The tea and sandwich stop really broke up the day and it was nice to sit and chat as a group. ( In fact I did a tonne of inane chatting with all sorts of random cyclists all day. I love that)

And so off we went again, more up.. this part was harder.. there weren’t as many cyclists on the road after we’d stopped for so long and it felt lonely and a bit more like work grinding up those hills on my own and then hammering it along the flats to try to stay close to my friends. As we wound towards the Ryals the bikes started mounting up again and we were once more among cyclists. OMG, nothing but pure respect for all those riders climbing the Ryals on hybrids and mountain bikes! I made it half way up the first hump before having to stop. I walked up chatting to other riders with a smile on my face, remounted and carried on up. Breasting the top there were my clubmates waiting for me, fabulous, eating ice cream no less. urgh, I couldn’t face it after the tuna sandwiches. I want them to know that all the times they stopped to wait at the top of climbs didn’t go unnoticed, I’m really appreciative but I don’t like to stop at the top, once those ups turn flat my legs are fine and I’d rather keep the momentum going so they stayed to eat their ice cream and And and I hammered it to the timing check at Stamfordham, really hammered it, flying past cyclists who then flew past us to fly past cyclists who then…. you get it.. it was great fun, made more so by being on more familiar ground now. shortly after sitting on the grass at Stamfordham Kevin rocked up saying he’d felt like stretching his legs and the girls (Baz and Bob) were just behind him. Excellent.. And here was fellow Vag Keith who was riding the 103 route. After a bit chat and the girls going for cake off we rode for the finish line. Well, off we flew.. till the boys started with the Saturday Peeing contest anyway… twice my chain came off and I lost them here, which was fine, we were only about 10 miles from the finish line. Coming through that finish line getting off my bike I saw Danny chatting to And. I rocked up to them with jelly limbs and a ridiculous grin on my face. How can I be bouncing like a loon and shattered at the same time?

I dumped my bike (gently placed, honest) with the collection of 103 mile Vags on the grass verge and went to hand in my chip. Aparently I was 1003 out of the 1089 riders who had so far finished. I don’t know what that means. We sat a fair while on the grass watching the comings and goings and chatting with our friends. Then we got on our bikes and took the slowest ride  ever back to Gosforth. I’m still grinning, which is surprising given the way I spent last night 😉

There were photographers round the course and when they are uploaded they will be available here  photos along with a certificate apparently.

I learned some heartening things from yesterday but I’ll keep them for tomorrow. I want to congratulate everyone who rode but especially Kevin, And, Bob, Baz and Bob who were great company and excellent cyclists and Danny who despite and argument with barbed wire ended his 100 miles with a huge grin and also Mark Kirby for doing what I couldn’t.

Explore posts in the same categories: June100, photo journal, Rides, Tyneside Vagabonds, Uncategorized

5 Comments on “The Northern Rock Cyclone. How was your day?”

  1. John Berry Says:

    Well done… sounded fab 🙂

    Shame its a little far north for me to get to without some serious effort.

  2. Davey Says:

    Well done on your ride…the Ryals are tough so no shame in getting off!!

    However, I always find climbing hills far easier on my mtb than my road bike.

    Cracking rack btw!!!

  3. trio25 Says:

    This report makes me want to do the ride!

    Sounds like you had a great time!

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