Louri Frame Strap Review

It was really nice to meet Sian and Thomas at the Cycle Show last week and to get a look at the many products that Cyclorise distribute in the UK.  Getting a close up look at the Louri frame strap and getting my own in a bike colour matching orange was a bonus.

The strap allows you to attach some essentials to your bike for races or when you want to travel a little lighter. Its really useful and easy to use – watch my video for the full low down.

The Louri strap costs £18.99 for the frame version and £17.99 for the saddle mount version.

Finally – the pronunciation – its looo-reee  as in

not lahow-rey ?  as in

For more information visit the Cyclorise and/or the Louri websites.

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Bit of blue for the Dads

Do people still say that?

Its a bit click baity, but I have to try anything these days to get views!

If you haven’t been to BikePark Wales in a while you might not know they’ve made some new trails – 7 in all. Well I rode 5 of them on Monday and in the video above you can see montage of my day.

I’ve put a shortcut below to each trail and highlighted the 5 new ones with an asterisk. I have also colour coded the trails Blue and Red.

Please note that ACDC and Watts Occurring are graded as RED below but are a bit of a step up in some ways.  Any other trail centre and they might be considered BLACK as they have some features that require commitment and in some parts of the trail there is no obvious line choice.

Anyway, i hope you enjoy the video and your next visit to BikePark Wales

Trails in order :
Sixtapod https://youtu.be/q5QcDA7MxqY?t=14s
Willy Waver https://youtu.be/q5QcDA7MxqY?t=47s
Melted Welly https://youtu.be/q5QcDA7MxqY?t=1m19s
* Off Grid https://youtu.be/q5QcDA7MxqY?t=1m37s
* Fforest Bump https://youtu.be/q5QcDA7MxqY?t=1m59s
* Roller Disco https://youtu.be/q5QcDA7MxqY?t=2m17s
Blue Belle https://youtu.be/q5QcDA7MxqY?t=2m32s
Terry’s Belly https://youtu.be/q5QcDA7MxqY?t=2m53s
Hot Stepper https://youtu.be/q5QcDA7MxqY?t=3m8s
Vicious Valley https://youtu.be/q5QcDA7MxqY?t=3m33s
Surfin Bird https://youtu.be/q5QcDA7MxqY?t=4m13s
Bushwacker https://youtu.be/q5QcDA7MxqY?t=4m46s
* ACDC https://youtu.be/q5QcDA7MxqY?t=5m8s
* Watts Occurring https://youtu.be/q5QcDA7MxqY?t=6m10s

All filmed using a GoPro Hero Session 4 (link for session 5) – https://amzn.to/2wnTqum

Ard Rock Festival 2018 in Photos

In no particular order, some pics I snapped with my Canon EOS M around the event village and I believe all of these are with the 35mm manual lens.

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Mountain Rescue – all raffle ticket proceedings went to this bunch looking after the rest of us fools on the hills
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First starting line up of the day. Jono Jones in the middle snapped a few chains and got lost but still managed a respectable finish and went on to win the Pump Track Challenge again!

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Danny won his category but was beaten in the overall times by 4 seconds by none other than Peaty himself

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I looked after myself with a few hot drinks #alpkit
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Dales Bike Centre did a grand job of bacon sarnies and cooked breakfasts everyday

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The clouds threatened, but no rain fell (well a few spots!

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A weekend in the Yorkshire Dales

I had planned on a 2 month fitness improvement plan. I had planned on getting out a lot more. But the weekend of riding in the Yorkshire Dales arrived just ahead of my fitness.

Its easy to blame the long damp, muddy winter – so I will.

I struggled. Enjoyed myself but struggled for the first time in a while, maybe working at home and having too many biscuits with each cup of tea was taking its toll, or I’d simply been a fair weather biker!

Anyway – it was a cracking weekend…  Thanks to Tom @ MTB Guiding for organising and for Stu @ Dales Bike Centre for guiding Saturday and Sunday.

I made a detour to one of my sort of bucket list locations before meeting the gang on Friday to Malham Cove. It had featured on the ITV programme about Great British walks and I still need to go back for a “walk”.

We met in Horton-in-Ribblesdale and Tom and Steph took us on a trip around Pen-y-Ghent, the smallest of the dales 3 peaks. I’m not sure what it means but its sounds Welsh and I think could mean either “head of winds” or  “hill on the border” – who knows.  It was a great circular route completely circumnavigating the peak and set us up for the weekend.

It rained a little, but mostly we had to navigate wet spongy ground in between grassy slopes. Stunning scenery. Why have I never been to the Dales before?

Friday and Saturday nights we stayed at the Dales Bike Centre in Fremington.  If you’ve done one of the Ard Rock Enduro’s you’ll be familiar with the location and the terrain.

We were in for a big weekend.

Saturday it rained. And then it rained some more. And a little bit more on top. The weather was miserable, but the riding was immense.  Yes we slipped around all over the place, yes the rocks were dangerous, yes we got cold and yes I took a BIG tumble which no one photographed (cameras and phones stayed out of the rain mostly).

But we had a great time!

Sunday the weather was more cooperative and the trails on the opposite side of the valley were also drier. We gained some height very quickly and continued to do so, which meant we could spend most the afternoon coming down hill.

We did have a few hike a bike spots and but were also treated some of the best trails of the day, some sweet single track and some of us even got down to  just our t shirts as the sun tried to join us.

3 biggish rides mean the body and bike took a battering over the 3 days.

The numbers:
Distance ridden – circa 90km
Height gained – circa 2500m
Tea drunk – 20 cups
Pints of Guinness – maybe 10
Food eaten – loads!
Cake devoured – not as much as I expected…

I need to get back to the Dales, oh wait I’m booked on to the Ard Rock Marathon in August!  Better start that training now!

 

A Sort of Newsletter

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I thought I’d put a kind of update blog post out ahead of the weekend, covering a few different subjects of what I’m upto…

Bikes

It certainly has been a long wet Winter and I have to admit I’ve done far less riding than I should have.  I have wimped out on a few bike park visits (they aren’t as much fun in the driving rain or mud) and my local trails have become unrideable at times. So I’ve done more miles on my cyclocross bikes than I thought I would. Keeping the legs spinning but away from the  mud as much as possible.

My DJ has not seen the light of day for about 6 months!  I had so many plans to visit so many pump tracks but it just didn’t happen. This weekend I must – especially if I am to justify buying new forks for it!

My full suspension bike has been kept safe and clean (see the wimping out above) and my trusty hardtail has bore the brunt of the winter mud and elements.

Come on spring / summer I need you now more than ever!

Travel

I am a little bit ashamed of my lack of adventure the last few months. Putting the bike in the car to drive for a few hours only to get just as muddy and cold and wet as I can from home hasn’t been very appealing. The lack of a roof rack on my company car has probably been a slight barrier to this too as it is certainly better to stick a muddy bike on the roof rather than in the car that I do not technically own. New car coming next week and I will be getting a rack for it (and the Summer is coming!) so things should change in that department.

I have a trip planned next week (before I get a rack unfortunately) but I am so looking forward to it. Expect photos and videos on my return of a weekend riding with Tom Hutton MTB Guiding and the Dales Bike Centre.

Talking of Guiding

Talking of guiding, I finally put my British Cycling Leadership Award into action and set up a “business venture” doing some local rides. MTB Guide Wiltshire has so far run 3 rides (Jan, Feb and March) and I’ve brought a few riders out from hibernation, had a couple travel more than an hour to ride with me from Hampshire, and helped a few new comers to the sport get an introduction.

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Including a booking on my 4th ride this coming weekend, I have now had 4 return customers.  The photo for this blog post was taken last Sunday when a hardy group of 6 came out for a tough mudder of a ride, 2 were returning customers, and 3 traveled by car for more than an hour to ride with me!

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Showing some locals that there’s plenty of good riding in our little corner of Wiltshire and earning a bit of cash to keep the bikes maintained is very fulfilling. I’m making new contacts and friends, while networking and being “paid” to ride my bike – that’s the dream, the Holy Grail isn’t it?

My first ride outside of Wiltshire comes up in May and so far around 20 people are taking an interest in being guided around the amazing landscape near Blaenavon and Big Pit.

Tickets are on sale for the Ponds, The Pit and The Punchbowl now, and until 1st May they are reduced from £20 to £15 per person.

You can follow my guiding activities on Facebook or Instagram.

And finally…

No, that’s just about it..  Oh and if you’ve a story to share or subject to rant about please get in touch, I am very happy and eager to let some other voices be heard on my little blog…

Tim(FromWales)