20th Anniversary Year

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Sunday 14 December 2008

Mud and punctures

We're normally not particularly bothered by punctures on 20-milers rides. Every now and again someone gets a puncture; we stop and have a look at the view for 20 mins or so while it's fixed and then we get on our way again. Quite often the punctures happen in pretty, quiet spots with a nice bit of sunshine. So it's no hardship really.

Yesterday's ride was a bit more of a challenge though!

Eight of us headed off to Balerno, via the Union Canal then the Water of Leith (the path was very muddy - my white bike ended up brown!) and up to Balerno before lunch at the Riccarton Garden Centre (where we had a very nice lunch in a warm conservatory and tried not to get mud everywhere). On our way back it all went a bit wrong though. We went through the Heriot Watt campus, then out onto the footpath beside the A71 coming back into town, and somewhere along there we all went through a thorny patch (we think that someone must have cut back a blackthorn hedge) and within minutes, 5 out of the 8 of us had punctures. I had at least 7 in my two tyres - other people had similar numbers. As you can imagine this put a severe strain on our spare tube / puncture repair kits and it took rather a long time to get the group under way again. By this point it was dark so everyone was glad to have brought their bike lights. Within 100m however I got another puncture so at that point I gave up and let the rest of the group head on without me. I spotted a number 25 bus which would take me home (from the Park & Ride) so I Parked my bike with good locks on it and Rode home - to pick the bike up later by car. There will be stories to tell at Chris' party today!

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