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Miller Ground Fun

June 29th, 2007

the spirit of the flames

On Tuesday, a few of us decided to head down to Miller Ground in Windermere/Bowness for some lakeside bonfire fun.
Spared the arduous task of finding wood (there was a massive heap right by the beach), we got to work right away and soon had a massive inferno going. Once convinced that our fire was hot enough to warm us up, the bravest amongst us decided to go for a dip off the pier. To our surprise the lake wasn’t as cold as might have been expected but there was certainly no hanging about!
Finally, we got cooking burgers and steak whilst toasting a few marshmallows. To end on a high note, we transferred some fire to a metal tray, piled on Dave’s already-smouldering boxer shorts and sent the ensemble on its way… until somebody sank the vessel with some pebbles! Heres some of our best clichés…

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ready for off
air off a pier!
splashdown
nose stall
paddling about
holding a stall
yeah!
just floating around
fire
warm hands
admire our work
gather around
surreal shot
surreal
standing around
sparks
sparkburst
long exposure
pretty
pretty patterns
the spirit of the flames
fireproof man
walking the fire
fire stick
daves firestick
daves fire stick
bye bye!
bye bye boxers
sooty
bye bye boxers
portable fire
chillin
mouse
around fire
warmth
mousey
meep
penguin
off we go
handstand
dont fall
batty in boat
kayakin

After thoroughly enjoying my last ride around this great trail last week, I decided to head back there for another blast. This time, I knew where to expect all the best bits and probably did my fastest ever lap. Sometime soon I would really like to take the whole thing slowly, making notes and taking photos so that I can do a full-on review. Anyway, here are some more photos for the timebeing.

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waiting for ferry
cygnet
swan
swan
swan family
swans
round and round
riding the boards
step-down
he 'rode the plank'
off he goes
riding the plank
planky
back up the step?
sweet boardwalk
round and round
off the step
banking round
le parcours

North Face Trail… Again

June 16th, 2007

north face trail

Making the most of a slight gap in the bad spell of weather we have been having recently, I headed out with my french pal to Grizedale for a lap and a bit of the brilliant North Face Trail. This time I knew where some of the better features were hidden (boardwalks, jumps, berms etc) and so we rode it even faster. An excellent ride, recommended to anybody on the hunt for sweet sweet singletrack.

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sufficiently splattered
north face trail
north face trail
jumping the boardwalk
romain about to jump
romain riding the planks
romain
boardwalk fun
ferry nab

After a pretty lethargic day of doing very little, I headed out to Sedbergh for 19:00 with a few other riders for a whizz around the Howgills on a bike.

bike in the grass

For a long time only having rode the local routes around Stavely and Kentmere, this new terrain was completely alien to me. The mountains were… huge! There were no trees, no bushes, nothing. Just grass, rocks, streams and cairns. The ride itself was brilliant. After a very long struggle up a massive hill (more like a mountain really) - of which some sections were definite ‘pushers’ - we made it to the top. From here, the ride consisted of a few ups and downs along the ridges, claiming a few more summits and trig points along the way. The final descent was brilliant, full of large natural ’steps’ up to three feet in height, some excellent grassy berms that can be taken at full speed if you dare and some lovely long ‘carving’ sections to mess around on. I think for the last few years I have forgotten what Mountain Biking is really about - having constantly rode the same old trails in the same old area - this ride has successfully rekindled the fires - the only shame is that I have little more than one month to enjoy it all!

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dad
descent
descent
sunset over hills
bike
bike in the grass
lying by my stallion
sunset
sunset over hills
descent
start of the descent
on the beaten track
tarn at the top
wheel
looming sky
the hills!
sunlight