Ian Tallamy, Wakefield House, one of our A-B Bike Ride cyclists, is taking his training very seriously indeed, going out on several different types of rides. He shares with us some of his recent cycling experiences:
“Back over the Easter weekend I took the bike with me when we spent Easter with my family in Port Talbot. Just a few miles inland is the start of the Afan Valley, where there are some fantastic rides, both on the road and off road for mountain bikers. It’s a climb all the way from Port Talbot until you get to the top of the hill at Croeserw (pronounced croy-sarh-oow). It’s just a small village but with a very steep hill to get to the top. For those who find the hill too much and don’t make it, then there’s a convenient cemetery there waiting for you.
Then once over the hill on to Maesteg and back again to my folks’ house. A lovely ride and I wonder if the route from Aberystwyth will be anything like this?
More recently I took a ride to Chepstow, over the Avon bridge and the first Seven crossing bridge. Alongside the Southbound carriageway of the Avon bridge is a cycle track and footpath, where you can safely cross over the river Avon without needing a car to take you on the M5 motorway.
I went on through Avonmouth and along to the old Severn Crossing. The new Severn bridge doesn’t have a bike lane, but the old Severn crossing is better to ride along anyway - it doesn’t have the large wind barriers, so the view is a lot better (but probably not good to cross on a windy day).
The approach along the A403 isn’t the most picturesque in the world, taking you past fairly industrial works, but it’s direct and easy to ride.
Approaching the bridge, coming off the A403, I did just that. The approach road to the bridge was covered with oil from maintenance vehicles, the back wheel went and then so did I. So there it was – the first time coming off the road bike.
I slid on the oil across the road (no traffic fortunately) but still attached to the pedals. Another cyclist was just behind me and saw me fall. He got off his bike straight away to help, and then he skidded across the road on foot!
Fortunately there was no permanent damage to me or the bike and I managed to carry on cycling over to Chepstow and beyond just into Gloucestershire. But on the way back over the bridge I nearly fell off again, from surprise this time - the guys on the army rifle range directly underneath the Severn bridge had just started their shooting practice. Thanks guys!”
If any more of our A-B cyclists out there would like to share how they’re training is going, get in touch!