Distance: 54.7 miles. Elevation: 3717 ft.
It’s almost too embarrassing to relate what happened before today’s ride. I have come close to doing this thing before but I’ve never actually done it, until now! I had made some adjustments to my handlebar stem and went out for a test ride up the road and back. When I pulled into my drive I tried to unclip my left shoe cleat as usual but it didn’t budge after numerous attempts. I was by this time coming to a stop so something had to be done quickly. I tried to unclip the right shoe but that wouldn’t work either. By now I had stopped and I gave one monumental effort to unclip the left again. But it didn’t work and I fell in slow motion to the ground, still clipped into the pedals! That’s twice in two days I have found myself lying on my side still on the bike! But this was worse. Instead of the soft mud of yesterday’s accident, this time I fell straight onto a tarmac drive. Bloody Hell! As I lay there, I could still not get the shoes unclipped and had to take my feet out of the shoes, leaving the shoes clipped to the pedals! I haven’t got a clue why this happened – I had been using the bike OK just yesterday. The pedals are quite new and I had already released the tension on the cleat springs. I can only assume it had something to do with all the mud that clogged them up yesterday, although I had eeked most of it out this morning. Anyway I wound down the spring tension as far as it would go, to be on the safe side!
Today I went on a nice ride circumnavigating Tunbridge Wells and Tonbridge
The weather was about the same temperature as yesterday and yet I felt colder in the same gear – weird? It was cloudier than yesterday and sometimes quite gloomy, but it was a great ride. The section from the A21 through to Hever I had never ridden before and there were some great roads, quite a bit of it being through forest. The route featured Ide Hill and some other climbs, but nothing as epic as Vigo, yesterday! Parts of this ride were quite fast but Yalding Hill was not one of them. Tired at the end of 54 miles, I recorded my third slowest time climbing it!
The good thing about today’s ride: it was all on proper roads! My bike loved it!