Scotland Trip

Not posted here for a while, due to all kinds of things, computer problems and being in Scotland for 10 days riding the DH bike mostly.
Had a great time up north, mostly riding at Innerleithen. There was quite a bit of snow around, never very much at the bottom but a good 6 inches or so at the tops, enough to make it fun without making it hard work. I'd forgotten just how much fun the DH runs there are. It felt quite odd to be riding a geared bike, the first time I've ridden a geared MTB since October. Hopefully a week of that should get my brain back into the right mode again for the season, amazing how quickly one adapts to an SS as a 'normal' bike when it's used every day and just how peculiar it makes anything else feel.
Also had a trip to Keilder, first time I've ridden there, just having a bit of look around so I know roughly what I'm in for at the Keilder 100 race in September. The trails there were absolutely fantastic, not quite as good as Inners but more than a match for the other man-made stuff across the south of Scotland. Even managed to surprise myself by riding some of the elevated wooden sections without coming off and hurting myself. Climbed up to the top of Deadwater Fell, it felt a bit like something out of a science fiction film, climbing constantly for a round 40mins, barely able to see 10 feet through the fog, just the same scenery going past on both sides, seemingly never ending, just climbing and climbing and climbing, very relieved to find the top.
Had a visit to a couple of old haunts, went for a run at Pitmedden forest with my old club, great to see everybody again. Much fun to be had running in the snow, and it was quite deep in places there, despite the relative lack of altitude. This was followed by another run in the evening, an impromptu half-marathon around Glenrothes and the surrounding area, which was far less pleasant. It didn't rain constantly, we also had sleet, hail and snow at various points. Managed around 11½ miles before my legs called it enough, mostly through cold I think, and suddenly lost all their strength making the last couple of miles rather tough.
Whether all this has done me any good we will see at the first Midlands race at Cannock...

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