Virtual adventures for the Axe Valley Pedallers
- Credit: Axe Valley Pedallers
Axe Valley Pedallers have been pretty active, despite the weather.
Graham Jones, our intrepid explorer, had three encounters with wildlife, the first while going off-road up Knoll Knapp, which is a muddy track with sheep grazing high up on the embankment, and on seeing Graham, they were so surprised two of them fell down the steep sides.
The next day he was hit by a flying duck, which bounced off his elbow. Knowing that ‘things often happen in threes’, on the third day he encountered, in a half-flooded lane, a duck happily dabbling in the water and oblivious to Graham and his bike.
Graham was at least pleased that it wasn't a herd of cows, which is not unusual in these parts.
Another of our adventurers, Clive Heard, was riding up Gatcombe Lane and Jobbles Lane and encountered some very whiffy goats en route, prior to getting the sort of unmendable mechanical which we all dread and finished with a plea for a lift home.
Neil Miller, however, decided to be sensible and stay indoors and ride on his turbo trainer in preparation for some likely racing later this year.
He managed to do some impressive rides, finishing with eight hours on the bike in one day and over 150 miles - well done Neil.
Finally, four of our members, Jonathan Read-Bone, Lawrie Poole, Barry Clements and Richard Quincey decided to take themselves off to the delightful north Italian town of Cernobbia for a 17-mile competitive ride through Maslianco, which included one major climb with an average grade of over 9% to the Swiss border and along to Lake Lugano.
No passports or certificates were required, as this was all accomplished virtually in their own homes using their bikes on "smart" turbo trainers that link with their TVs or laptops to show them the route, which has been filmed and is therefore very realistic.
Many such routes can be ridden, including in the UK, Australia, America, South Africa etc, by using apps, such as FulGaz or Zwift. On this occasion, the riders set up a link via Facebook Messenger video call to keep it social.