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11th, 12th, 13th July 2012
Le Tour de France, French Alps

No sooner have I returned from a week long mountain biking in Les Arcs than I am back in the Alps with my road bike and two sons, Sam and Ben and following Le Tour de France. Pics below, for full ride report see 2012 Tour de France.

 

 

Untitled Document

all photos and content copyright of Richard Sear 1999 to 2015

 


22nd July 2012
Riders: Richard,
Davebus, Rob, Rob M, Mark, Adam & Andy
Westcott, Ranmore Common, Holmbury Hill & Leith Hill
Weather: 24°C

Summer's finally here and after the highs of lift-assisted MTB in Les Arcs, following Le Tour in the Alps and the first British winner of the Tour de France we hit up the trails starting from Westcott Green for a change of scenery to our usual rides.

Up Pilgrim's Way towards Ranmore and an early tester for Rob who has lost his riding legs having spent two and a half weeks in Cyprus. But I have honed mine to perfection tackling the Hors Categorie climbs of the Alps on my road bike and am flying around today, middle-ringing the whole ride and beasting everyone on every climb.

Up to the Abba Zabba complex and we meet Dave and Andy who have ridden from Ashtead. I tackle Abba Zabba followed by Rob who catches those ridiculously wide bars on the tree at the turning point and ends up sliding on his arse on the downslope; the first of many crashes for him today.

Along the North Downs Way and through Abinger Roughs towards Raikes Lane and The Volunteer Pub with a brief stop for a mechanical when Andy's long-suffering chainset ships a chain. A powerlink repair and we are on our way again.

The trails are firm but with plenty of puddles and areas of thick mud but they are very rideable and not too slippery even on the chalk of Ranmore Common. We cover more bridleways and less singletrack than normal but the ride is no less fun.

Up onto Holmbury via the play area car park and we stop for a quick chat with Andy Ghostrider before heading up to the top for the Yoghurt Pots which is absolutely rammed today and I pinch-flat my rear tyre. It's my first for months in fact it's the first since the start of spring when the hedges were being trimmed leaving many spikes on the trails but it gives Mark a chance to snigger about my choice of tyres; Continental Vert Pro's my XC tyre of choice for many a year. I've obviously been riding full-suspension for too long recently and not keeping my weight off the saddle today.

Then it's onto Leith Hill via the Upfolds Farm climb and again I'm flying up here leaving the rest in my wake. Rob suffers from cramp and we wait for him to catch up. Up onto the top of Leith Hill and a quick break at the tower before the long descent back via Summer Lightning and the Rookery for a great ride of 18 miles (28k) plus another 10 miles (16k) for me to and from Ashtead where I hooked up with Adam for a lift from the Bat-cave.

A different ride to normal and definitely to my experiences over the last month but it's great to be out in the sun riding with your mates.

 

 

Untitled Document

all photos and content copyright of Richard Sear 1999 to 2015

 


 

29th July 2012
Riders: Richard,
Rob, Mark, Adam & Keith
LOMAC, Polesden Lacey, Ranmore Common, Leith Hill, Westcott, Leatherhead n home
Weather: 16°C

We rode down a hill and then we rode back up again a few times. It wasn't raining but then it was. Until it stopped then it wasn't raining anymore.

We got wet then we dried out.

The Olympics was there but we didn't see it 'cept for Keith who did.

That was it.

With thanks to Stopadoodledoo for inspiring the ride report.


 

 

Untitled Document

all photos and content copyright of Richard Sear 1999 to 2015

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Untitled Document

all photos and content copyright of Richard Sear 1999 to 2015

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click to view click to view click to view Steve Neill Big Trev Orange Dave dialled bikes pewter headtube badge Dave and Dave outside LOMAC Dave on Summer Lightning A grinning Trevor Steve (again) Davebus and Neill on Stane Street Jason next to Denbie's vineyard Trevor struggles up the climb Dave followed by Jason on Stane Street Banstead Downs singletrack It was getting dark by the time I got back Richard (that's me!) Surrey Hills logo at the top of Coombe hill Gary dicing with the cars through New Malden Stag party Gary's Giant SCR 2008 model  A cheerful looking Gary part way round Richmond Park speed limits for cyclists! Kingston Gate, Richmond Park view off the side of Headley Heath Bianchi K-Vid carbon forks self-portrait whilst climbing between second and third hairpin on the Zig Zag Road, Box Hill Dave and Mat, the folly, Reigate Hill urban riding, Richard in Ashtead High Street a bit underexposed but a nice shot of the view from the North Downs Way Richard dropping in on Colley Hill No, not the Mediterranean, this is outside LOMAC, Ashtead High Street Richard showing off for the camera Mat and Richard, Stane Street Richard, Headley Heath Mat on Headley Heath Gary with our 'rabbit' in the distance Gary in the dusk Richard Gary chasing the yellow 'rabbit' in the distance Cas Cas Richard 'self-portrait'