Spring and body chain.

14°C, clear and cloudless. Moderate easterly.
I rode The Paddy Wagon with MapMyRide+! Distance: 90.07km, time: 03:41:13, pace: 2:27min/km, speed: 24.43km/h.


Fitted the summer wheels and a new chain. The weather was nearly perfect, a brisk easterly built up later. These wheels are excellent, quick and light to handle. Overall, a fine ride on a fine spring day.

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Every day is like Saturday.

9°C, wind and rain.

Day Out at a seaside town, Southport. The place was swept by right rain and some semblance of its tourist roots are obvious. Tacky shops are open with loud childish music played and vast amounts of sugar based food are on sale.

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The ides of March.

14°C, cloudless sky and light wine.

A fine spring day. Large numbers of plants have burst into bloom this week. Warm weather has sped them on and I’ve seen the first bumble bees.

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Worn cog.

10°C, light sunshine and W breeze.

I rode the Paddy Wagon with MapMyRide+! Distance: 71.56km, time: 03:03:45, pace: 2:34min/km, speed: 23.37km/h.


Bannister Hill was okay. Actually, there was a race going up there but they let me through. The climb was not too hard but it may have led to mechanical problems later.
I noticed the odd cracking sound in the following miles. On wtgd approach to the next village, the chain jumped off the rear cog and was trapped against the spokes. At least I could stop safely to fix it.
After fixing it, it looked like the cog’s teeth are narrow and hooked. They’re worn out.
A single-speed bike does not share out the wear across 8 or more cogs so you should expect the gear to wear faster than multi-gears. Considering the age of the gear, this is good going.
By the way, the ride was nice. It closed over later and the wind picked up. But, spring is here, daffodils in full bloom.

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Testing the kettles.

9°C, sunny with showers.
I’ve tested the new kettle today. The new one, with a heat-exchanger on the bottom promises faster boil times. Cold mornings can be a problem on a camp because the low temperature dramatically affects the time it takes to make breakfast. Maybe like me, you really want a coffee first thing to start the day.
To test these pots, I put 400ml of your at the same temperature. I timed each pot to the point when steam appeared when I hit Stop on the stopwatch. The stove is a Primus, the type with a hose and a loop of pipe that is pre-heated by the flames.
Here’s the results:

Plain kettle.
3’10”, 130g.

Heat-exchanger Kettle.
2’40”, 250g

Heat-exchanger Pot.
4’10”. 280g.

I’m a bit worried about the last result. The gas can chilled so much that it froze to the table. Gas pressure drops away dramatically when cold. This may have lengthened the boil time despite the heat sink.
Here is a close-up of the heat sink in case you’re wondering what it means. The idea is to increase the area in contact with the flames. This folded metal has a larger surface area and also channels the hot gas along the pot’s base.

In conclusion, I think the heat-exchange pots are worth having for the boil times. The only disadvantage is the extra weight.

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Very muddy canal loop.

5° to 9°C, sunny and very muddy.
I rode with MapMyRide+! Distance: 28.44km, time: 01:52:56, pace: 3:58min/km, speed: 15.11km/h.


Deep, Watery and sloppy mud. Hence the low average speed. Sometimes as low as 5mph. Even so, I still failed to fall off into the canal.
Bright spring sunshine made this a happy ride. The mud was a feature, but it was so watery that most of it didn’t stick to the bike.

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Head noodles.

7°C, moderate W wind, dry & sunny.

I rode the Paddy Wagon with MapMyRide+! Distance: 94.45km, time: 04:03:27, pace: 2:35min/km, speed: 23.28km/h.


Hard work, just under 60 miles and I’m coming back from some loss of stamina this winter. Now the lighter mornings are here, and other stress has resolved, energy is coming back to me. Drinking both bottles twice still left me dehydrated though. I’m a little worried that my long distance stamina has started the year reduced compared to most years.

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Oh Doris.

8°C, gales, gusts to 60mph, heavy rain.
Fourth named storm, Doris.

Credit: BBC weather,

The news is full of storm news. Widespread destruction is expected and the news channels are very excited. They love it really

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Kinder downfall

10.20am Grey start with hill fog visible above 400m. heavy rain later.kinderdownfall

Walked with Chris along the southern edge of Kinderscout plateau. Once on the plateau, we took a diversion to see a WWII crash site then returned to our main route.

The intention was to see Kinder downfall after a night of rain. We even considered the possibility that the downfall would blow upwards. The waterfall is at the head of quite an angular valley facing the oncoming wind. As it turned out, visibility was so poor, <50m, we could not see any water although heard it clearly.

Rain started around the time we descended becoming quite heavy as we popped out of the cloud base.
I had a flask of hot water waiting at the car. The choice was soup, coffee or tea in the form of sachets or infusion bags. the kit list was about right. I had normal walking trousers plus thermals under. Even when the rain started, I didn’t feel such a strong urge to put the waterproof overtrousers on.
Note for future: (1),this worked really well. the water had kept hot for 8 hours. If I were to take a flask on the walk, it should be a bit smaller than this one. I’ll keep it for sharing.
(2),I barely used my new camera, but it’s better to take a light camera and not use it rather than a heavy one and not use that. One problem, it has a strong magnetic field. It deflects the compass by a good 30°C. It’s awkward taking compass readings at arm’s length.

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Metric Century.

11ºC, grey but not too dull. light SW breeze.

I rode Arrow; with MapMyRide+! Distance: 112.27km, time: 05:05:28,
pace: 2:43min/km, speed: 22.05km/h. That’s 68 miles to you. I should have done 2 more.


Spring is tentatively poking its nose out of the opening in its sleeping bag. Here are yellow tips of these miniature daffodils. Today’s warm weather (11°C), is blowing up the southern approaches from tropical climes. For me, that means no cold feet on a long ride.

The returning 10 miles was really hard. I haven’t done many rides over 40 miles this year so perhaps it’s inevitable. Oh, and I rode yesterday, the day before and before that. Normally, Saturday used to be a rest day.

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