This was a slightly intriguing dilemma for me as
- I would have to bring my bike up to the in-laws several days before the actual event, and UK weather prediction seems pretty much as accurate as 'if it's raining out your window take a brolly...'
- Despite the .gpx file being released a week or so before the event, I had such little knowledge of the terrain and trails that this was of no use to me....
However, I was also fearful that riding the sole gear of 32:18 on the SS would soon let my knees know that gears would have been a sensible choice. It was loosely on my agenda to swap the gears from the full sus to the single speed, but on the day I was planning on doing that I'd taken the choice of riding a bike rather than fettling with one!
I had loosely asked on STW what bike they suggested I take - amongst several replies was the sensible answer "just pick a bloody bike and ride the damn thing"
I picked the single speed.
Also, a riding friend had emailed me a week or so before and told me I'd be a legend (or words to that effect) if I did the 100k on the single speed. And of course I have an ego to feed....
Anyway, since riding the HONC (13th April) I've been up to a fair few things, but blogging hadn't been one. Hence, I can't recall a great deal about the actual ride - It was a really good, challenging route. And the weather was beautiful to boot!
Here's a few snaps taken on the trails..
All in all the event was a great day out and well worth the pretty small entry fee.
Some of the climbs could be described as 'fairly tough', including a good group separator early on in the ride. However, to be honest, riding the single speed up and down hills is petty much like riding any bike - just that if going UP you simply push harder, and if going DOWN, you simply pedal faster! "Why not just add gears" you may ask?! A logical question I suppose...the answer is that for 95% of the riding I want to do, I don't need to. For the other 5%, I'll pick another bike!