Yes, the audax ride did go well for me. Along with 27 other riders managed to complete the very hilly course of 4000 metres of ascent in 10.5 hours! That did not include the ride from the farm of approx 50 km at 02.30 to 05.15 to Pendleton [between Clitheroe and Nick of Pendle Hill]. I only left at 02.30 due to being unable to sleep after 12.00. The ride started at 07.30 and we were allowed until 21.00 hours to finish it, I had some cereal and 2 cups of tea before the start on that wonderfully clear and sunny day. We had 84 km to do to get to Kirkby Stephen for our first Control and lunch stop. I got in at 11.20 am. We had to go down into Dentdale via the viaduct drop from Newby Head. I was getting fatigued [KNACKERED] before then and my feet and hands were getting very cold and numb. So as I was losing power more cyclists were overtaking me & so by the time I got to the turn for Garsdale Head and up the very severe incline to Dent Station I was well and truly f—k-d! Luckily, then, that I was given some Smart Gel ‘Go’ bars cos that gave me just enough to get up n’ go to Kirkby Stephen. The next steep pull was up Swaledale Hill to drop down into Thwaite, for 12.25. Got my Brevet Card stamped and off_ _ up UP and away on the climbs to Buttertubs and the drop down to Hawes. Then immediately turned off to Gayle and did The Fleet Moss Climb!

It was about 2pm when I topped out and really enjoyed the descent down to Langstrothdale. Thru Buckden Kettlewell and to The Queens Pub in Litton for about 15.20. I was starting to suffer my second “bonk” [Bikers slang for severe energy loss] and was really glad for the Hot Apple Crumble and Custard. The fifth and final but quite steep climb up and over Arncliffe was now ok. I reached Malham for 4.40 to get my card signed in the cafe and immediately got away onto back roads with another cyclist through Airton, Hellifield, Halton West and Bolton-in-Bowland. I finished just after 6pm and still in daylight. A total of 204 km passing through the vales of Ribble Valley, Ribblesdale, Dentdale, Swaledale, Wensleydale, Wharfedale, Malhamdale and back through Ribblesdale. It was a fantastic day of very hard but very scenic riding to top off a really fantastic weekend involving 2 caving trips, a pre-farm ride and of course the people partying and piss-up at the farm on both nights. Consequently. I didn’t have to ride another 57 km to get home after the event cos another cyclist gave me a lift in his car. What a fantastic knackering weekend.


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