A record of my cycling trips in Britain and abroad


Back to running…?

I’m wary of adding anything about running here in case I injure myself again! I was just getting back into the flow of it, running was going well, and then out of the blue a mysterious ankle/tendon/Achilles type injury appeared. It’s still there as a little niggle, but running doesn’t seem to make it worse, now, so I’m easing myself back into training. I did the Abingdon parkrun a couple of weeks ago, and was pleased enough with my time: 18:43. It’s a flat two-lapper, which is probably the worst sort of course in my opinion - although it’s by the river, through fields, it’s a very pleasant setting - it’s simply the two lap aspect I dislike, especially for a flat course. I prefer three laps - at least then, the first lap isn’t two bad, after two laps you’re tired but you know you only have 1/3 left. With two, you finish one lap and you’re tired, but you know you’re only half-way. Maybe I should try to be more optimistic and look at is as half being done!
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Abingdon - 60 mile loop

This is a lovely loop I did a couple of weeks ago. It was a perfect morning for it (although I was feeling a bit wobbly - not wobbly on the bike, just a bit ill or something. Maybe I was a bit dehydrated, not sure!). The ride was fairly flat, and we travelled light, which meant we kept up a fast pace. We did have an early start, but not super early - maybe 8? And I was back before 1, with a round 60 miles in the bag (I think - the map image here is just from memory, but I think it’s right, at least on the return leg. I was paying less attention to navigating on the way out).

Definitely recommended!



Not a cycling trip… and ok not a trip at all… but my running is improving. I’m definitely blowing my own trumpet here, but why not - it’s my blog after all :) Two victories in two weeks at my local parkrun. Pb next week? Let’s see…


Wicklow Wramble

I went out for a short spin yesterday with a pal from work, heading out for a Sunday morning ride (not the Sunday morning call) from Dundrum to the Wicklow hills. The forecast was for clear skies, but a light drizzle was in order instead, and I was glad we’d committed to heading out otherwise I might have been tempted to stay in till the rain cleared (although my bike might have thanked me if I had, as it’s rather in need of a good clean and oil at the minute - one of the drawbacks of commuting being that I don’t keep it as clean as I’d like).

We did a nice little loop in about 2 hours, through Eniskerry, climbing up to the Jonny Fox pub, and then heading deeper into the hills along Pine Forest Road. I could see why it got its name!

A nice loop, and one I’m looking forward to doing again. (Apparently there’s also a steeper way up the hill - we may have to tackle that next time…)


Muddy Mountains

Some would call them hills - but hills or mountains, taking my mountain bike into the Wicklow National Park last Saturday was fabulous! With the Great Sugar Loaf behind me, I turned onto the trails above the waterfall at Powerscourt. This is the highest waterfall in Ireland, and I should really pay it a closer visit sometime; so far I’ve only seen it from the far distance, too far to really appreciate it.

I headed up and down the Dargle Valley, along forestry trails and some great singletrack routes. It’s not as extensive an area as the trails say in the southern Mournes, but it made for a really enjoyable morning. In fact, it was perhaps the perfect place to start back, since I haven’t been mountain biking for the best part of a year, and the trails here were enjoyable without being difficult, which made it a perfect re-introduction. The weather helped, too; I was fortunate that the wind had dropped from the morning and the rain held off, which meant that my lightweight, super-breathable jacket was just right to keep the chill off on the descents without making me overheated on the climbs.

I do need to sort out the suspension however, both the front and rear. The forks in particular and feeling a bit spongy, and are definitely due an oil change at least. Finding a place to do it in Ireland seems like it might be a challenge though, as the first bike shop I tried suggested shipping the forks over to the UK…! I have a link for another one, local to Dublin, which I’ll ring this week to ask if they can service them. I would try servicing them myself, but I don’t have a convenient space to work in.