Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Snowy Cycling

Tuesday 30th, November: They say "be careful what you wish for you may get it". Well after the freezing weather and no snow we have now had a small sprinkling of snow here in the flatlands. I had meetings in Cambridge most of the day so I took a great circle route to attend them to get some distance in). I wanted to get out of Cambridge to see what the fields were like, but had to wear more formal clothes. So I headed out along NCN51 turning off to the Wilbrahams at The Missing Sock and then back through Fulbourn.

As I was only going a short distance I didn't have a problem staying warm although it did seem pretty cold. The one thing I do have to remember when going to meetings is to take my bike lock along with me. When I am cycling for pleasure I generally don't take my lock, It is a heavy (and I hope) strong lock, but for meetings in Cambridge! not for jaunts around the countryside.

I only had my small pocket camera with me - I find I can get some odd looks if I turn up to meetings with a large camera and it means I have more space in my bag for stuff I should be carrying. The bag is a Knog bag and no longer available - but a courier style sling over the should bag - useful for meetings.

As it happens I only stopped once to take pictures - I had left my house a little later than planned and if I was to get some distance in I needed to keep moving. This is the scene, somewhere between Great Wilbraham and Fulbourn.

When I got to my destination on time I then had to quickly remove a few layers of clothing to prevent over-heating.

I didn't take the too-long way home, I didn't fancy dark country roads around rush hour so I cycled out to and then along the Airport Cycleway. It was a mistake and I wished I hadn't. The snow had been compressed into icy patches with ridges which made for uncomfortable riding. There was always the fear of sliding on ice and every now and then the wheels would get jinked by ice ridges. The road was clear of snow but full of cars I but in the end I switched to road once I had gotten to NCN51, it was safer than the cycle paths even with the tin cans. No sign of the Quad bike though!

I have just seen reported that a cyclist was in an accident on the road between Fulbourn and Great Wilbraham yesterday at 6pm and suffered serious injuries. I hope he makes a good recovery and I can't help thinking about how such accidents happen (and how to avoid them).

Whilst on the news, the "Guided bus fleet is gathering dust" according to the Cambridge News. Apparently there is some concern from one of the bus companies that legal wrangling might add even further delay to the availability of the CGB. There was even a suggestion on a local Lib Dem Councillors blog that some (double-decker) buses might be too tall for some of the bridges between Cambridge Station and Trumpington Park & Ride.

Mind you I have not found any other mention and there appears to be a picture of a bus running on the Southern Section and a report indicating that a CGB bus has completed a trial - the picture shows a single decker bus though.

And finally, ever thought of taking cycle rugby - then Cyclists warn of danger as bikes join scrum at station. There is a side gate that has been used by cyclists at Ely station but this is now locked during the day (9.30am - 4.30pm) and so cyclists are having to go through the Station hall which is quite small and has narrow doors.

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