Whilst browsing in PC world on Saturday, I noticed this little camera mount from the makers of those little Flip Video USB camera thingies: So I thought, hey, why not give it a go. I've got an Olympus 770SW which is a fairly rugged compact camera - you may recall an earlier post where I fell off - well, this is what did most of the damage to my hip!
I took a quick climb out of Skipton, up Shortbank Road, to try out a familiar piece of singletrack. Tree-lined singletrack is in short supply around these parts and I wanted to see how the camera would cope with light and shade, as well as dealing with a lot of information, combined with a rocky and rooty surface.
Okay, so it's Wednesday and I'm still aching from Bank Holiday Monday's ride. It's not down to the mile count or the gradient, lack of fitness (maybe?) or poor bike choice...
I fell off. There... I said it, I feel better already.
It was a simple corner, a slight step down into a puddle which concealed a rock. A rock which impeded my front wheel's progress sending me over the bars. Still clipped-in I fell sideways like a sack of potatoes onto my dodgy shoulder, delicate right wrist, ribcage and right ankle. All of which are sending me signals telling me I'm too old!
The point of this blog isn't the fall, it's where it happened. I rarely fall on my local trails. I hardly ever fall at trail-centres, both of which are understandably predictable riding.
This ride was one of those hidden gems, my riding-buddy and I didn't see another cyclist on the whole loop! And what a loop, starting out from Ripley near Harrogate, North Yorkshire, taking in ancient bridleways, tiny forgotten villages, churches used and unused, Fountains Abbey (including a ride around the perimeter Monk's Wall), woodland, farmland, Manor houses and a fantastic single-track bridleway, gently downhill and flanked on either side by wild garlic - absolutely magical.
Our average speed was no more than six miles per hour, a case of ride-a-bit, map out, ride-a-bit-more, map out. Occasionally looking for well concealed signposts and bridleway arrows.
This was definitely one of those rides that will stay logged in the memory banks for quite a while and has given me a taste to explore more. So, get out your OS Explorer maps and ride where you don't ride, exploring is never boring.
After that last post of tailwhips and backflips, I started hunting for a mountainbike video that was more on my level. Who would've thought I would find it right under my nose, courtesy of the lovely people at Howies!