TransWales 2011

Viewing 39 posts - 1 through 39 (of 39 total)
  • TransWales 2011
  • Premier Icon IdleJon
    Subscriber

    So with about two months to go, who is in?

    Has anybody done it before? Any tips?

    I’ve entered the solo vets category. My training is going as well as I can expect with a newborn baby in the house and a Welsh summer to train in! (I’m going out to get a new waterproof later which is hopefully actually waterproof to some degree..)

    I’ve done plenty of racing before, plenty of enduro type events among others – is there anything unusual about TransWales other than the length of the event?

    And finally what’s the food like? πŸ™‚

    nicky
    Member

    Looks awesome which I could have ago. Enjoy it you lucky thing πŸ˜€

    MSP
    Member

    I am doing it this year, first time. Would like to know how often the feed stations are and what the score is with bike security overnight.

    neilWalts
    Member

    i did the Transwales in 08 & 09, and will ride it this year again. You’ll need a good waterproof, but nothing too big as you’ll have to carry it when it’s sunny and most of the time you’ll have quite a full back pack with 3l of water and food.

    The food is OK.

    Bike security is up to you, i took the wheels off each night and put the bike in my tent. You can bring a lock if you want and lock it each night, you won’t have to carry the lock on the rides each day.

    I only thing i can really say about the Transwales is it’s very weather dependent. In the rain it’s a slog, in the sun it’s a pleasure.

    hughjengin
    Member

    I am in this year, first timer. Male pairs under 40, cant honestly tell you whether I am looking forward to it or not to be honest, which is bizzare considering its just cost me Β£500 πŸ™‚
    Whats everyone riding ? Epic for me, hope its a good choice.
    Stupid little details are niggling me. They say always carry a fully charged mobile. And that there is no where to re-charge it. Which is going to be a pain, as my phone only lasts a couple of days tops on standby. May have to find a pub with a friendly landlord who’ll let me recharge it there. Or do the organisers have a generator

    foxyrider
    Member

    I copped out and did the last 4 day mini – I wanted to see what its like and then if I love it I’ll do the 7 days next year 😳 I have decided to do it on a HT however 😯

    hughjengin
    Member

    neilWalts – Member
    i did the Transwales in 08 & 09, and will ride it this year again.

    Did you take kit for 7 days, or is it feasible to wash and dry stuff. What do most do ? Just wondering so I dont have to blow another Β£300 on kit as well !

    Premier Icon IdleJon
    Subscriber

    They say always carry a fully charged mobile. And that there is no where to re-charge it.

    I’ve picked up a solar charger from Clas Ohlson:

    http://www.clasohlson.co.uk/Product/Product.aspx?id=153309003

    Β£16. I haven’t really had a proper play with it yet. So far I’ve managed to charge the actual charger through the USB and then discharge it completely supposedly using solar power into the phone. It then needed a complete charge through the USB before I could charge anything else. I may have been sold a lemon, or maybe I need to read the instructions more thoroughly!

    I’ll be riding my Cannondale Rush but with my steel HT on standby just in case I have a disaster. (The HT will be stripped down so that my wife can get it in the car and drive through the night to find me..)

    foxyrider
    Member

    ‘ll be riding my Cannondale Rush but with my steel HT on standby just in case I have a disaster. (The HT will be stripped down so that my wife can get it in the car and drive through the night to find me..)

    Not being funny but I thought the rules (when I read them ) said you had to do it all on one bike?

    MSP
    Member

    I have a powerchimp for charging my phone and gps, I will take a big pack of duracells to make sure I don’t run into any problems, fathing around with solar chargers will probably end in disaster.

    http://www.amazon.co.uk/PowerTraveller-P-CHIMP-GRY-Powerchimp-Charger-Grey/dp/B001HNODKM

    Premier Icon IdleJon
    Subscriber

    said you had to do it all on one bike?

    πŸ˜€

    It may well do! 😳

    No, the HT will only be ready if I snapped a frame for instance – I’m guessing that in an emergency you wouldn’t be chucked off for using a different bike. After all, it’s not actually a race!! Not for fatties like me, anyway.

    BUT – I must check the rules at some stage.

    foxyrider
    Member

    Yeh fair enough – I was getting excited that I could do the special stages on my Five and the easy stuff on my HT πŸ™

    Premier Icon IdleJon
    Subscriber

    Only one bike for the duration of the event

    Yeah, you are right – I just found it.

    hoopdriver
    Member

    In the past people have broken their frames and have been able to finish on another bike.

    hughjengin
    Member

    Was thinking about getting the powermonkey, for charging duties. Apparently it has enough juice stored in it to charge a BB twice. ANd you charge it up via the mains (again find a friendly landlord) if the s**t really hits the fan it has a solar panel too to attempt to top it up. Although I am sceptical about the efficiency of this, bearing in mind its Mid Wales !!

    Premier Icon IdleJon
    Subscriber

    bearing in mind its Mid Wales

    Ahem, the Desert of Wales, if you don’t mind.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Desert_of_Wales

    Not to be confused with the Dessert of Wales, which is a flat, fruit spotted, butter slavered cake type object. No good for long ride over….

    Daisy_Duke
    Member

    What NW said. Real weather dependent. Did it back in 09 as solo. If I was to do it again, I’d go for the Gold entry as putting your tent up in the pouring rain after 8hours isn’t a highlight. Use the route distances they give you as very approx. They seemed to vary massively to the actual distance travelled. Most days worked out 10% or more longer than the route card. Courses are well marked though.
    Food was generally excellent, although top tip is to bring you own metal knife and fork as the plastic ones are pants. You can buy extra food extra food at the overnight camp but it’s very expensive.
    I’d consider s’speed if I was to do it again. Bike components get a hard time, esp if wet.
    The last day is awesome and you’ll get a wonder buzz after 7 days hard riding πŸ˜€

    hoopdriver
    Member

    Referring to the original question-

    On paper it looks like you have to ride an enduro day after day. But if you normally “race” enduros then the TW is not so hard as you can normally* take it easy and still come in well within the time limit.

    *Unless the organisers make it tight to turn the screw. But then there is a lot of whinging.

    I see you are in solo vets: I recommend stopping to eat a pie halfway ’round the special stages πŸ˜‰

    Did it in ’09

    what’s the food like?

    I thought it was quite good. And plenty of it.

    how often the feed stations are

    There’s usually one mid-morning, lunch and one mid-afternoon so thats about 12 -14 miles apart. When I did it they were a bit out with their quoted distances and they didn’t have signs when you were say 5 km from the next feed station so it was a bit unpredicatable as to when they would turn up.

    what the score is with bike security overnight

    There’s no security arrangements so take a lock or two and leave them in your kit bag for the organisers to transport between campsite.

    Did you take kit for 7 days

    If possible do, so you don’t have to worry about dry clothes and can just put a new set on each morning if necessary. You may not need to though so I wouldn’t go out and spend Β£300 on more kit. Go to Lidl or chuck in a few non-biking tops/Ron Hills etc.

    is it feasible to wash and dry stuff

    Not if you’re in a position to need to dry stuff (i.e. it’s wet/raining). During the day you’re riding and your stuff is in a kit bag.

    I only thing i can really say about the Transwales is it’s very weather dependent. In the rain it’s a slog, in the sun it’s a pleasure.

    Very much so

    The last day is awesome and you’ll get a wonder buzz after 7 days hard riding

    +1

    Premier Icon IdleJon
    Subscriber

    I recommend stopping to eat a pie halfway ’round the special stages

    I see that you know me already! πŸ˜€

    hoopdriver
    Member

    One thing not mentioned so far- Bring food to have in your big transport bag so you can eat as soon as you get back.

    Possibly pies, special recovery pies.

    Possibly pies, special recovery pies

    Looks like I’m spending 11-12th Aug in the kitchen then πŸ˜‰

    But it’ll be special recovery cake, not pies…

    hughjengin
    Member

    Holy cow, I am looking at the theoritical list of stuff I “thought” I was going to be taking and there doesnt seem a chance in a million years I am going to fit it in that bag they give you.

    Premier Icon IdleJon
    Subscriber

    IdleJon – Member

    said you had to do it all on one bike?

    It may well do!

    No, the HT will only be ready if I snapped a frame for instance – I’m guessing that in an emergency you wouldn’t be chucked off for using a different bike. After all, it’s not actually a race!! Not for fatties like me, anyway.

    BUT – I must check the rules at some stage.

    Having said all of that, I guess that it was inevitable that I’d bend the mech hanger on the hardtail last night.

    Need to wait on decisions on warranty or, worst case, which new frame to buy now….

    At least I’ve still got the FS.

    milkman100
    Member

    I am doiging it as well, on a spicy 516 which I think is to much bike for the job but I cant afford to change it,

    my concern is fitness, I can ride all day for a cpl of days but i am really struggling to get motivated and worried i might live to regret doing it

    as for the phone charger bit, i bought a solar charger with batteries in so if its cloudy it will use the batteries in stead, and its rubbish, so im going to buy a cheap phone and just switch it on in case of an emergancy that way should last a week with a full charge

    any one want to buy a solar charger

    cheers
    craig

    hughjengin
    Member

    Yes I had heard about the limited usefulness of solar chargers. I thnk you could have the right plan bring an older “not so smart” phone, (I think I still have an Nokia 6500 knocking around with a full battery possibly bring another fully charged battery for it, and hey presto I can see it lasting a week easy. Bringing my Blackberry with all its gubbins, is only going to mean being pestered by work Emails and such like. All I really want to do is call my family and friends occasionally and have it there for emergencies

    foxyrider
    Member

    I got one of these for Β£50 for general riding but am going to take it for TW as well about 300 hours + standby πŸ™‚ Waterproof as well πŸ™‚

    I’m going to be there all week taking pics again.

    Completely unofficially, and maybe I’ll get told off for mentioning it, but there have often been power sockets available at some of the overnights where people have managed to charge phones. I guess they are saying none available because they can’t guarantee that there will be.

    The last 2 years Gore have also done a try before you buy deal where they lend you some kit, so that will probably cover one day if they are doing that again. By the end of the week though there are usually some fairly shonky looking outfits.

    I’ve been there for the last 3 years and the food has always been good, except maybe for the “Caribbean night” they did a couple of years ago, that was frankly bizarre.

    Premier Icon Straightliner
    Subscriber

    I did it in 2008 (yes, that year) and have done a few other stage races.

    The biggest thing with multi-day races is being able to get back on the bike the next day. I know it sounds obvious, but in your training make sure you’re getting a few long back to back rides in.

    Some of the guys went to the launderette in Machynlleth on the night we stayed there to wash and dry kit. This seemed to work quite well, but it depends on the route if you’re going to be stopping anywhere near a town of a reasonable size.

    The bag they provide is big, getting a week’s worth of kit in isn’t that hard if you think that most of the time you’ll be in riding clothes, and the evenings you’ll need warm stuff, but it’s not a fashion parade so you can wear much the same stuff most evenings.

    Couple of tips – the bag you’re given isn’t waterproof so wrap each days kit in a carrier bag/large sandwich bag before you go, then you won’t be searching for stuff each morning. If you can get 7 sets of shorts, socks and gloves it will make your life a whole lot more pleasant, particularly if the weather is bad. Ensure you wrap your sleeping bag up nice and dry as well.

    Take plenty of your favourite food, particularly savoury stuff. You’ll be fed up with energy bars, gels and drinks mid way through the event.

    Food in the evenings was very good indeed, and plenty of it. Snack stops during the day were more variable. As someone else has said, take some cutlery of your own – even some throwaway plastic ones – it’s a lot better than a spork.

    Footwear – your shoes/boots will be wet on day one and probably stay that way for most of the week. In the evenings, I’d suggest a pair of sandals or crocs. Anything else may just end up soaked and useless, with something simple like sandals you can just towel dry your feet before getting into your sleeping bag.

    As for your phone, just turn it off during the day. You can always turn it on if you need it, and if it’s you that gets injured, you’re probably not going to be looking for your own phone. Some of the campsites have no reception anyway, so again, just turn it off.

    Premier Icon IdleJon
    Subscriber

    the bag you’re given isn’t waterproof so wrap each days kit…

    Thanks, that’s exactly the sort of tip I wa hoping for when I started this thread! πŸ˜€

    Premier Icon coopersport1
    Subscriber

    I’m in, on the website it kind of contradicts it’s self on the packing list. 1stly it says all your kit including sleeping bag and tent need to go in the kit bag, then fyrther on it kind of implies that your tent is carried seperately from your kit bag?

    Anyone confirm what way round it is, or have I read it wrong?!

    stayhigh
    Member

    I enetered this back in January however my boiler has given up the ghost and now I cant afford to go 😯

    I contacted the team to see if I was able to defer my enterance until next year but no can do as they’re thinking of taking abreak next year.

    I could very seriously cry.

    There are still places available but if anyone wants registration on the cheap then please email me πŸ™‚

    GaryLake
    Member

    I believe it used to be that tents had to go in the bag but then everyone started bringing pop up tents so they slackend the rules on that.

    MSP
    Member

    Anyone know what the tents used for the gold package are? ie are they a fairly roomy three man type thing or are they a little backpacking type thing?

    vdubber67
    Member

    I’m in for the third time πŸ™‚

    Some good advice on this thread. My couple of inputs would be:

    a) Take a good lock. Someone tried to steal my bike in Brecon last year, even though it was locked to a gate. Always lock your bike to something at night.
    b) Sleep / Massage. Recovery after each day is key. Sleep/snooze as much as you can, and if you can afford it, get a massage every day.

    Happy to answer any questions via email as well. rtedge@hotmailDOTcom.

    I also wrote an article for XXCmag about last year’s event – let me know if you want a copy etc….

    MSP
    Member

    as above, what about the tents?

    thomthumb
    Member

    I also wrote an article for XXCmag about last year’s event – let me know if you want a copy etc….

    i liked that. πŸ˜€

    vdubber67
    Member

    Thanks thomthumb – really appreciate that! πŸ™‚

    MSP – if you’re asking about the gold package tents, then from memory they appear to be very small popups. Not worth the money really. I mean, how long does it take to pitch a pop up tent!? πŸ™‚

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