Laid plans

My intention was to get some photos – and a story to go with them – for a magazine route guide based around Blaenau Ffestiniog.

It can sometimes be difficult finding willing rider-models to come along on these things. Especially if it’s something that’s best done during the week, when proper people are at work.

I eventually found a willing rider-model (Dave). And booked in with the Antur Stiniog uplift service to sort us out with riding the new trails there.

With it being November, and North Wales, there was a high chance that the weather would be horrible. As it turned out, the weather was pretty manageable. Yes okay, it sleeted at the start of the first run but after that we had our fair share of brightish weather.

The weather didn’t actually matter. I’d planned, and packed my photo stuff, accordingly.

It started out well. The uplift service was swift and easy. The trails were fun. The setting was amazingly ugly-beautiful. I decided not to get the camera out until we’d be sampled all the different runs down the hill. Things were going well.

Until our second run. Whereupon Dave hit the deck on something of a ‘nothing’ corner. The sort of silly crash that happens to us all now and then. He was winded for a few minutes and holding his ribs.

We went back up for a third run but from the moment I noticed Dave struggling to lift his bike out of the uplift trailer I knew it was going to be a write-off of a day, workwise anyway.

I took a couple of pics on an early section just for the sake of it more than anything else.

Dave called it a day. We went for a warming cup of tea and a chinwag in the cafe.

After the cafe, I headed back on to the uplift service (sans camera) and just rode my bike. It was great. The trails there are quite a piece of work.

Although I didn’t get any useful work content from the day’s trip, I’m not sad about having to go back and try it all out again soon.


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