After a week’s enforced rest I’ve been itching to get back in the saddle so on a cold a chilly Sunday morning Pete, Ian and I set off for a 50 mile ride covering a couple of decent climbs. My knee improved during the week with no twinges although it did feel like it wasn’t quite right still. So I was a little nervous as we set off. The route we took went north out through Bury and then up the Rossendale valley through Bacup and up over to Todmorden.
Bacup to Tod was the first real climb. Quite long and decently steep in places it’s a good place to get your climbing legs! Or down the other side a long and fast descent into the town of Todmorden where we found a nice cafe called Costermongers, and a nice slice of coffee and walnut cake!
The wind was quite strong at times and considering it’s May it was freezing as we headed through Hebden Bridge, turning right at Mytholmroyd. That brought us to the bottom of Cragg Vale and a sign which states “Start of the Longest Continuous Gradient in England – Rises 968 feet over 5.5 miles”. I decided to test my knee at this point so I went up the hill on the big ring and thought I was doing pretty well near the summit at 11.5mph when two young guys steamed past me with a cheery “morning!”
I stopped at the peak to take some pictures of Pete and Ian as they reached the top.
We then descended from the White House at Littleborough down to Hollingworth Lake. This is a short but fast downhill section – with a slight tailwind I hit a top speed of 43.7mph which felt great. Past the lake and then back through Rochdale, Heywood and finally home. A total of 50.79 miles, 2683ft of climbing at an average of 14.3mph, burning over 3000kcals. Ice bath when I got home and some slight saddle adjustments. Knee is aching now but not really painful like it was last week. Fingers crossed.