Monday Morning Debrief 29

by Dave Anderson 9

Ticket to ride
Ticket to ride

One of the great things about bikes is the opportunity to visit new areas and get a taste for the riding in them. Last week saw the Lapierre 2014 launch in Chatel and the chance to stay on for the 10th Anniversary Pass’Portes du Soliel, an 80km MTB randonée through the mountains. With two days to choose from to do the circuit we decided on the Saturday.

Just a little bit muddy

Saturday dawns and after a week of low cloud and cold temperatures, the Alps has decided to add a bit of torrential rain to the mix. Trails that were slowly drying and now hub deep in mud in sections which kinda ruins the flow of bikes if not run-off water. I’ve not really packed for the weather with only an emergency merino base layer for insulation, wearing everything I’ve brought; long sleeve merino base, long sleeve top, gilet and full goretex jacket, I’m regretting not packing a full face helmet for the extra insulation.

A drop into Morzine is extended while we hunt out warmth, coffee and a pair of googles so that we can at least see where we’re heading in the driving rain.

British conditions for British riders. On the plus side it’s keeping the lift queues to a minimum although the longer chairlifts are pretty brutal, long lengths of time spent shivering and wringing out gloves.

Wet bike (more later….)

The main plus side is that the amount of water spray is stopping too much mud gathering on the bikes and there’s a hint of traction once the tyres dig deep enough into the gloop to bite.

A ride that feels much better in retrospect. I’ll be back next year to try it in more typical 25°c, dry and dusty conditions.

How was your weekend?

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Comments (9)

  1. laughed like a drain when my mate fell off a cliff into a bush.

  2. Preparing myself for the Mondraker Gravity Enduro next weekend: downhill practice on Saturday afternoon, and a day of monster hills over Exmoor on Sunday. Cracking weather and conditions. Knackered but also excited; I just don’t want to come last!

  3. Is that a Martini Racing saddle?

  4. Lapierre branded SDG. Officially comfy 🙂

  5. Mid 20s and sunshine here today… unfortunate timing for the PPDS. Tee shirt and shorts on the Mossettes lift – quite a difference.

  6. I did Saturday this year – Just as good as last years saturday just a different experience!! (last year dry and 28c)

  7. I signed up for the Friday ride by mistake (forgot to check the drop down date box when I finally got through) and glad I did. The trails were drying quite well by Sunday afternoon although the braking bumps were bigger.

  8. I did Friday’s PPdS. First experience of riding in the Alps and as good as I’d hoped (though it was chuffing cold, specially first thing).

    Went out on Saturday, too, as it seemed a shame to be there and not riding. Mostly unpleasant, although the red way-marked “downhill alternatives” were very gigglesome just trying to stay upright.

    Massive respect to anyone who slogged all the way round on Saturday.

    Sunday, drove home: 998 miles, 21.5 hours, roof down all the way.

  9. Rode all 3 days, wicked fun

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