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Le Terrier this Sunday

maddog 2maddog 2 Posts: 8,114
Weather looks okay. Nice ride through the Trough. Just signed up :D
Facts are meaningless, you can use facts to prove anything that's remotely true! - Homer


  • ransos1ransos1 Posts: 34
    See you there!

    I've entered the long route - looks like a real tester, so let's hope the forecast is right.
  • CalpolCalpol Posts: 1,039
    That was one tough day in the saddle. I will write more later when recovered.
  • CalpolCalpol Posts: 1,039
    edited June 2013
    Calpol wrote:
    That was one tough day in the saddle. I will write more later when recovered.
    First of all
    Congratulations and thanks to the organisers of this event. Lancaster cc - they did a great job. Even arranged some stunning weather.

    I entered this a few months ago for a couple of reasons.
    1. My sister in law lives in Lancaster and told me it was a great area to ride in.
    2. I wanted a focus for my training

    Le terrier is billed as having no "junk miles". I now know what that means. There is barely a flat section on this route. We did the medium route and it was tough. The step up from 66 miles to 104 would have been beyond me on a course of this nature. It was the usual early start with me leaving the hotel at 630am and cycling down to the start via my sis-in-laws for porridge breakfast. I think we eventually started at 730am. Somewhat annoyingly i forgot to start the garmin until halfway up Jubilee Tower climb!! so my computer shows a slightly shorter distance at 65.4 miles and only 9200ft.

    The first section isn't too bad. Jubilee tower climb is about 2.5 miles at a steady gradient with only a few steeper sections. Average 5.7%. Still even at that its a fair bit longer then anything round my way. However the weather was great and by the top I was stripping off the gilet and arm warmers. The descent was a little nervy for me as the surface was ropey and punctuated by suicide sheep.

    The next sections were steady up hills with some steeper digs. There are a lot of climbs of 6+% that are over a mile which becomes a real grind. I was grateful that I had fitted a 13-29. I don't think I have used the 29 much around Beds, Bucks and Herts but boy do you need it here.

    After moving nicely up what Strava describes as Rock Brow (1.1 miles @ 3% ave) we turned into 40 acre lane. Jeezus that was steep. Strava refers to the next climb as "Jeffers" is was hellacious. Front wheel lifting off the ground constantly. I am ashamed to say that I got off and walked 30m - then mounted up and ground my way to the first feed stop. Jeffrey Hill is 1.6 miles and 7% average. I measured a sub section of 0.6 miles at 11% average. !

    The downhills on this ride are as you might imagine exhilarating if a little dangerous for a stranger in the area and at this stage in the ride I wasnt dreading them as I would later. They offer a good chance to recover but they are over all too soon and you know you will be climbing again. It seemed that almost around every bend was a wall like gradient. A couple of time I got caught in completely the wrong gear and had to dig my my up a few steep bits in the big ring!

    Next up was a 3 miles drag at 5.3% up Hallgate Hill. This was another slog. I managed to latch onto a couple of riders and used them to pace me up. This was the only point where I dropped my partner. She is a truly determined bike rider and I am quite in awe of her (She had a baby 8 months ago!).
    After regrouping we had another little dig up to the next feed stop at Slaidburn? We passed a bloke on a mountain bike with knobblies on who was grinding up a hill and apparently doing the 40 mile route. Nutter! Only spent a short time at the feed station as I was getting cold being off the bike.

    The next section was the Skaline and Lythe Fell Road Climbs. I reckon combined they were 4 miles of pretty constant climbing at about 6%. The wind was in our face, the surface was ropey but we battled on. Scoffed a gel at the top and then ran down into a tiny village where the next timing scan/check was. By this time we must've been c55 miles in. The bloke who scanned our tags offered some advice.
    " Turn left up there and when you see the bungalow on the left put it in your smallest gear and work hard. This is the worst bit" I had read about the last section of the ride being a real challenge but to be honest I hadn't comprehended just how tough it would be.

    About 500m later I wanted to climb off again. It was brutally steep. Again the front wheel wouldnt stay on the road! the back wheel was skidding on the gravelling surface. That was hard. At one point I was grinding up a section at 3.6mph!!! determined not to walk although it would have been quicker.

    At this point in the ride we are heading to Roeburndale and the route goes off road and onto a gated section. We hit the first bit of this and again I nearly cracked. It was so steep and gravelly. I walked 10 yds, paused and then climbed back on and grinded my way up Roeburndale at about 4 mph. On the next descent I punctured!! We could see the next section of climb ahead of us - that was not a good moment. Fixed the damn thing and soldiered on. After the next gate it was as much as you could do to get clipped in and moving as it was steep and gravelly. A kindly rider gave my sis-in-law a push to get her going and we crawled up the last rough section.

    At this point I was asking her, "are we nearly done with the hills?" - The answer was "No"

    We had Littledale and Stock-a-bank to do. They werent long but again had some wicked gradients which lifted the front wheel and had your paced slowed to a crawl. We conquered them and cruised back down to Lancaster. Undoubtedly that was my toughest day on a bike but one that I am proud of. On this ride you are either going up or down, there is barely a flat section on the course. average speed was 12.8mph :(

    We were lucky with the weather, not much wind and no rain. Would i do it again? Ask me in a week or two!
  • maddog 2maddog 2 Posts: 8,114
    Yes a great day out. The 104 mile route was brutal! Definitely harder than the last Terrier I did a few years ago. It's equivalent to the Fred and no mistake.

    Well done the organisers too. Excellent support and friendly.
    Facts are meaningless, you can use facts to prove anything that's remotely true! - Homer
  • ransos1ransos1 Posts: 34
    That was a terrific event - great route and organisation. Roeburndale was pretty tough right at the end but I'm glad I went for it. Now for La Marmotte!
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