Challenging? Gruelling? difficult to say which “ing” best describes this ride which put the mountain back in mountain biking. Having never done a real MTB ride before, today was certainly different as we headed for the Kilpatrick Hills. I opted to elave the car at Erskine and cycle the Erskine Bridge to get some extra miles in as I knew the actual route was going to be short. What I didn’t know was that it was also going to be so ruddy mountainous! Featuring grades of 14, 15,16 and17%, not surprisingly there were lots of spells of pushing the bike, and the average speed therefore pretty poor. The cycling (if you can call it that) was tough but at least I didn’t resort to the granny gear when I was actually on the bike. And if the “ups” were scary, picture this: one of the “downs” recorded as 63% in the Garmin. I believe that is accurate as it was as close to a vertical descent at you could get without actually resorting to hang gliding. I walked that one needless to say, which was much more sensible than what Matthew tried to do. But speed or distance wasn’t what today was about. Again, a good adventure and good company. And it’ll have built up some additional leg strength. I’m doing some speedwork tomorrow and Monday to make up for today’s dent in my averages though.

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