After over a year of research, riding in London and simple laziness, we managed to get out to Dorking for a ride through the hills with working bikes, GPS and a camera. So, albeit a little lacking energy, here is our first real foray into UK mountain biking...
Angus, Brett and I caught the train down to Dorking (it's a ridable distance but we were hungover and lazy). The ride starts about 2kms from Dorking with a painful ascent. But the downhill on the otherside is makes it very much worthwhile.
It was normal UK weather so the view at the top didn't offer much.
Gus got a puncture pretty early, which made us laugh but although we were well prepared (several spares and a patch kit) after several flats the week before, we were still hesitant.
The ride was just a loop through a few bridleways which joined up with the use of a few short roads and people's driveways. Nothing too fast or technical, just a lot of very annoying loose rock.
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There were a few nice houses to lift the scenery.
Houses and green grass can be seen anywhere; the highlight was getting hot chips at a caravan that looked like a giant Carlsberg can. Food and exercise was too much for Gus and Brett so a short sleep was needed if they were to keep up with me.
We continued on to a nice section that jumps inside the M25 for a while and runs right next to some farm yards. Despite the thin, deep gully with loose rocks at the start of this section, it ends with a fast, gradual down hill with low trees and a beautiful roll out into an open farm which allows you to get your breath back and contemplate the many ways you could have stuffed that up but could also have gone faster...
This was more of a social ride to try to get some off road fitness back, and a chance to get out of London to see what sort of trails are around. Thus, the self portrait was a must:
So after 30kms or so, we hit up some food and drinks in Dorking and strolled back to the station for the easy way home.