Tag Archives: draycott steep

Give up yourself unto the moment

col

See this? ¬†Ok, it’s not an official Col sign. But it’ll do me ūüôā ¬†This year’s mental century block had nothing on my enduring Draycott Steep block. ¬†I’ve never made it up. ¬†Ever. ¬†And I’ve been riding a while now. ¬†To be fair I’ve not tried that many times. ¬†Two or three maybe, and I’ve always had to stop and walk, even if that was sometimes wet road/traffic induced. ¬†Nonetheless I’ve¬†never done it. ¬†And, due to my dismal prior performance, I wasn’t entirely sure I ever would/could, which is why I’ve been avoiding it. ¬†But Alan and I have been meaning to try it again for a while. ¬†It was supposed to be today. ¬†But last night, with the possibility that he’d have a hangover (he didn’t) and that I’d have earache (I did) I was half expecting us to change our minds about attempting it today. ¬†Well we didn’t.

It didn’t necessarily feel like a wise decision. ¬†It felt even less wise when, after we stopped post warm-up loop to stash gilets, I coughed my guts up again – this cold is taking a while to clear! ¬†But I did want to do it. ¬†Or at least try to. ¬†We have a habit of doing hills well together, though not actually together as it were. ¬†I don’t know if I’d ever summon up the motivation to try¬†it on my own. ¬†And I know I wouldn’t want to try¬†it following the usual race snake suspects, who’d be leaving me in their depressing wake. ¬†So I guess it was kind of now or never?

Steep behind

The time was now. ¬†It seemed as good a time as any. ¬†You’d be hard pushed to find a better day to do it too. ¬†OK, so we were in pre-sunshine mist. ¬†But it was dry. ¬†The road was re-surfaced a while back. ¬†It was warm enough. ¬†And barring the odd considerate vehicle, it was quiet. ¬†There was no pressure. ¬†And…? ¬†Yep, I made it up. ¬†All the way up. ¬†In one go. ¬†It’s long and it’s steep and it’s long and it’s steep! ¬†I’d say it nearly killed me, but that would be a tad unnecessarily over-dramatic. ¬†It wasn’t quite that bad, but it was bl**dy hard work. ¬†Alan had had to take a break near the end of the steepest bit, heart rate you know, but that was probably because he didn’t know the worst was nearly over whereas I did, so I could push on knowing that. ¬†To be fair, I just thought he was waiting for me! ¬†The higher we got, the sunnier it got, in serendipitously symbolic fashion. ¬†And after quite a while, for the first time ever, I conquered Draycott Steep. ¬†See this smiley face? ¬†Well, ok, you can’t, but even now I’m still mad happy about it ūüėÄ

And we didn’t leave it at that which, had I been feeling truly rubbish at the top, had been mooted as an option. ¬†But since the sun was out, and the worst was done, it seemed rude not to bathe in the glory for a while. ¬†So we went across the top of the Mendips to Burrington Combe, so I could enjoy a good down. ¬†And then up through Rowberrow so I could enjoy going down Shipham Hill. ¬†I nailed the ups, and I nailed the downs. ¬†It turned out to be a pretty awesome ride ūüôā

Cycling time: 1:52
Distance: 26.8 miles
Avg: 14.3 mph
ODO: 8877.8 miles

OK, so since Alan had had to stop, and the Steep took his zing away for the rest of the ride, he probably doesn’t agree with me. ¬†But I had a great ride, and I couldn’t have done it without him. ¬†Thanks mate! ¬†We sat in the sunny Square for coffee and cake afterwards, and I did my best not to crow too much. ¬†Although I skipped the coffee and went with the more celebratory instead. ¬†Well, it is my day off ūüėČ ¬†Woo hoo – I made it up Draycott Steep!!!

earned