The start of the mountain track, to Walna Scar in the Lake District. Cycling in the Pennines is a great base to work from when your mid-week break includes 10k feet of ascent, with a significant chunk of off-roading.
Taking your bike over a mountain is hard work at the best of times, but add to that one fierce-some headwind that stops you dead in your tracks… it was memorable. The descent required skill to ensure we werent blown off the track and down the mountainside. I could barely see – the wind making my eyes water so much. It was brilliant fun! A fantastic technical descent over rocks and boulders at the bottom of the hill beside a torrential waterflow that looked like it is usually no more than a stream. There was a pub lunch at Seathwaite before we climbed again back over the pass via a slightly less crazy route.
Hitting those kinds of ascents with guys still powering up those hills when some of them around 50 years older than me is inspiring. I hope when I get to that age that I can still manage trips this immense.