Tuesday 25 May 2010

Thank you!

A quick note from the organisers -Adam and Steve- to say thank you for turning up. Twenty people all in, including Owen, a seven year old, whose participation was very impressive.

Montpelier was a good intro, Kingsdown fun, Cliftonwood as scenic as ever. The best bit: Bridge Valley Road being closed to cars, giving it a full Alpine-mountain ascent feel. Here we can see Adam enjoying the climb. At least we think he's enjoying it.

We have a proposal from one participant to organise the sequel, the Bastard Hills of South Bristol, which would take in windmill hill and finish in Totterdown, of course. That's going to be harder than this week's event.

There seems interest in doing a repeat, maybe this time we can do one around Christmas, as on a cool day it would be a great way to stay warm. There is also some enthusiasm for a kids version, which would probably just take in one of the sections: Cliftonwood or Kingsdown. Maybe we should do one in each location on separate weeks.


Saturday 15 May 2010

Granby Hill: last descent

After climbing up most of Cliftonwood, the descent down Granby Hill will come as a relief.

For anyone planning to run this area, there are some really good on-foot options you can't explore by bike -do your research! The Polygon is an on-foot-only option, and there are various flights of steps to get you up or down things.

Speaking of steps, Granby Hill finishes going over the portway and then you can walk or cycle down the steps.
Then its out the A4 bike path, towards Bridge Valley Road.
That road should be more fun to ride up when its closed to cars. Quieter.

Thursday 13 May 2010

Ambrose Road, cliftonwood

Very pretty, the houses on the left probably get a good view of the harbour. The trees in the distance: Ashton Court.

The route plan is to descend here. tuck left and do Church Lane bottom to top.

Cliftonwood is a very quiet part of town, doesn't get much through traffic, and the signs "residents access only" encourage this. For walking: its great, there are even paths full of steps to make things more interesting. For cycling, it's hard work, but quiet and with great views. 

Tuesday 11 May 2010

Church Lane: Steep, quiet, scenic

Possibly the toughest climb in Cliftwood, certainly it's in the top 5;

Constitution Hill may have edge in length, Ambra Vale in steepness,
But as we plan to climb both of those too, you get to make your own mind up.
What this road does have is lovely views
And very pretty buildings. The heart of Cliftonwood -something the Lion pub may be to thank for.

Monday 10 May 2010

Constitution Hill

Long and Steep.

Not the steepest in the ride, but long, so long.

When we discuss the planned ride, a lot people say "and constitution hill?". We reply: yes, but it's not the hardest. It's just better known than Marlborough Hill or Church lane.

Sunday 2 May 2010

May 23: Three Weeks Away

Quick reminder it is three weeks until the big day, the now-infamous Bastard Hills of North Bristol event. This one, St Michael's Hill, is obviously part of it, but it is not as steep as some of the others. As the first person to complete the route in one go noted
Once I had traversed the true bastard that is Marlborough Hill (right) and sped down Horfield Road, climbing up St Michael’s Hill didn’t seem half the challenge that it normally is.

That said, the route plan will do it both up and down -the descent can be a bit tricky as you have to give way at the bottom. There is a draft route plan online, but note that this is provisional, and we may throw in some surprises. Certainly Nugent Hill provides more suffering than turning off at the first opportunity to get to Ninetree Hill offers -surely the second or third exit should be used instead. Similarly, around Park Street there a couple of detours which make things harder. We will see as the day goes on. One goal is to avoid killing everyone in Montpelier within ten minutes of setting off, so we will avoid the York Road descent followed by a Richmond Road ascent. As York Road is likely to be closed for roadworks, this is a wise choice.

Bridge Valley road may be open by May 23, but the shared use pavement/bike path is open today, so anyone who wants to train can check it out now.

Some of us plan to combine a bit of route rehearsal and obstacle checking by doing the entire route early one evening as a preamble to the main group event. If that kind of thing appeals, get on the Bristol Cycle Campaign Yahoo! group and its mailing list. Before that, get your bike working, check its brakes and gears are as expected, get climbing!

Tuesday 6 April 2010

Bastard Hills of North Bristol: May 23

We were forced to cancel the original, January date for the first Bastard Hills of North Bristol ride on account of the snow ice.

Only the very brave were out and about on bicycles on that day.

The new date: Sunday May 23. 10:30 am, Picton Square/Thali Cafe in Montpelier. There should be no snow there.

Hopefully, just hills and sun.
Many hills.

It's over six weeks away, so start training. Now. If you are riding single speed, sort out an uphill gear option.