The Lampeter Loop
I arrived in the Lampeter Co-op carpark to find the Ruffy Tuffy 100 Milers already there having an in depth debate about the Club's position on eating bacon butties during a club ride before 10 am. Despite a spirited case by Barrie, the Chairman used his veto and off we set off towards Tregaron. The ride was livened up by a sighting of a Heron, a dead Hedgehog & a car driver who felt we were occupying too much of his road. Despite driving a very obvious silver car, he felt the need to flash his lights & beep his horn - we expressed our considered opinion of his behaviour with a spirited suggestion of where/how he should get off!!!! At Tregaron we stopped for coffee & were joined by Tim & Eric.
The hill out of Tregaron is memorable but compensated by increasing dramatic views. Soon the full splendour of the Green Desert of Wales revealed itself and some superb roads meant we could get a move past Llyn Brianne to the Towy Bridge Inn.
The Chairman's multi-tasking skills were tested trying to cope with simultaneous orders for food and beer from hungry & thirsty cyclists!!!
Spotted at the Towy Bridge Inn
The road to Pumsaint was pleasant but uneventful and it was here that the Ruffy Tuffy 100 milers headed towards Brechfa and possibly another beer in the Black Lion... For those returning to Lampeter, it was a simple pootle down the main road - or so we thought. With some local knowledge, Tim suggested a left turn would avoid the main road and he assured us that whilst it had a few ups & downs, it was fine, so off we went. All was indeed fine until we hit a hill that was like the upper part of Bessie's only longer and steeper. Now reader, as an experienced cyclist you will know when things are getting steep when the front wheel goes light. You also know that a shift of weight fwd will sort things out - on this hill, said shift had the back wheel spinning (the road surface was wet, greasy & covered in storm debris) so back the weight went, and the front went light so fwd with weight... This lead to a dynamic weight shifting technique as this hill kept on going. Eventually the top arrived and after much recovery huffing & puffing we 'complimented' Tim on his route finding skills!!! For those who are interested in challenges, check out the imaginatively (and somewhat incorrectly) named 'A482 Climb' segment on Strava - the KOM holder must be some hill climber... The remainder of the road to Lampeter was a delightful high speed descent. Tim & Eric headed for Tregaron & I returned back to the car. A very satisfying ride in good company.