The festive period seems a long time ago now, I really enjoyed having a nice long extended break, but I'm glad it's finished to be honest. I quite like January, mainly because it's the time of year I start to think toward better weather, weekends biking with friends, and nice night rides up the moor without having to pack lights and waterproofs, not to mention the mass of washing when you get home.
Speaking of which, I've not been doing much nightriding this winter at all, probably less than any time in the last 5 years, but my commute is providing me with plenty of miles riding during the week, so I don't feel bad about not going out again when I get home. Also, in the last few months, maybe even longer, we've been aware of the need for some maintenance on our trails above the village of Fairlie, so in between Christmas and new year, Craig and I spent a couple of days digging and hauling rocks in a section that has been getting more and more eroded over the last few years, and had turned into a bog. I think a mixture of the popularity of cycling, and strava have meant that there's more and more people riding the paths that used to be pretty much only ridden by ourselves and a few lads from west Kilbride.
I've only really been out off-roading a few times over the last while, myself, Robin, Julie and Stuart had a nice afternoons ride up over the moor last week, even though the rest of Ayrshire basked in clear blue skies, the moor was a cold, dark, cloudy and damp place. Then today, in what was to be Klaus and Robins final pre-strathpuffer ride up the river trails, we were also joined for an early morning Sunday ride with Stuart, Julie and Gav.
It was purgatory. The wettest I've ever been on a ride. The loudest thunder and brightest lightning ever witnessed by thee, hailstones, sleet, monstrous headwinds, rivers where trails used to be.... All is was missing was a plague of locusts.
But, and it's a good but, this is when you earn your karma points for summer dusty rides, ye can't get any puddin' if ye don't eat yer meat!.
Best of luck to my two mates in the 'puffer next week, looks like it might be a cold one, I'll be watching their progress on the SI website, curled up in front of the fire with Maria. Best of luck boys!.