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A Ride in the Sun

So it seems like spring has finally come to the UK and that the sun has been shining all weekend. It’s made for some fantastic riding conditions.

Certainly makes a change from earlier in the year!

Remember the Creepy Tunnel Ride? Well, it’s looking a bit different down there now.

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The water levels dropped so no getting my feet wet this time around around! The lights were working this time around as well. The entire ride was quite dry throughout to be honest, a few patches of mud here and there but I guess this is to be expected considering the amount of rain we’d had earlier in the year!

Countryside

I always get some grief from workmates on living “out in the sticks”. It means I’m limited in travelling into London at weekends (due to National Rail’s engineering works) so sometimes I miss out on stuff that I would otherwise want or get to do. Note, that I’ve entered the London Classic next month and I ended up booking a youth hostel the night before as I don’t trust National Rail to be running trains that day and I don’t fancy the cycle from Hatfield to Barnet to get the tube first thing and then a cobbled ride!

Anyhow, when anyone says why would I want to live outside London, this is the reason why…

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You can take the Devon boy out of Devon, but you can’t take the Devon from the boy!

With the weather being good, many people were out and about. I was pleased to see that a lot of the cyclists I passed would acknowledge me or say good morning or whatever – little things like that are quite nice and can make the difference between a good ride and a great ride.

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New Toy

In addition to cycling, I’ve bee playing around with my new toy, a FujiFilm XF1.

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It’s the first proper digital camera that I’ve probably had for over five years. What with my resolution to take a photo on every ride, and the London Brompton Club taking photos, I thought that perhaps I should invest in something perhaps a bit more exotic than my iPhone 5C – the intention being for cycle touring I can carry only a dumb phone where the batteries will last longer, and the digital camera, for the same reason.

The photo’s in this post were the first ones taken from a ride using it. Perhaps I’ll do a blog post on purely the camera in the next few weeks and a bit more use. But overall I’ve been happy with it so far. Only downside is the lack of geotagging – that’s a feature I quite like about the iPhone that I can auto set it to tag photos with the locations. I can then view where I took the photo in iPhoto.

Anyhow, I think I need to experiment a bit more with the whole photography lark and I think the purchase of a reasonable camera (was £70 off at PC World recently) was probably worthwhile in helping that happen.

Bromptons Vs Hybrid

Todays ride was on the hybrid, I was house hunting yesterday on the Brompton. I’m now beginning to think about selling the hybrid (though it’s new!) and getting a second Brompton for touring on (the reason for the hybrid). Mainly because my house purchase fell through which means that I’m now having to live in a shared flat with the only secure place to leave my bike is my new balcony. Which means carrying it through the flat entrance, the hallway, the kitchen and my room with out touching the floor or scuffing the walls. I imagine that would get tiresome quickly. So I’ve got a decision ahead as to whether to go for the folding bike or not as I’ve got my eye on a second hand Brompton.

After all, the main aim of the hybrid this year was to get out bike touring. The Brompton might suit that a lot better to be fair, as I can jump on a train or plane and go where I like. I’m just not entirely sure how I’ll get on riding long distances on one though.

It probably makes more sense to try and carry the current hybrid through the flat, as I already have it. And all the equipment for it. But I guess it depends on what the current flatmates feel as well – if moving the bike through the flat will annoy me, I imagine dripping rain and mud through the flat will annoy them as well.

It’s something that I’ll be considering over the next few days.

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