Sunday, 12 June 2016

Tour of the Hill Forts of South West Dorset

12 June 2016

An excellent week of good weather, but a little too humid at times, especially for the children doing Bikeability, they were soon hot and tired. It was also very hot in the Camper van at night, not complaining though!
Also managed to get a couple of runs in so maintaining my 'at least 10 miles a week run' 
However, the highlight was a ride over to the South West Dorset Hills as extra training on my 'Gazelle' for my Eroica weekend next week end. Most of the ride takes in a number of Hill Forts in the area, lovely views from them all and all on very rural,quiet roads.

I headed down through Winsham and over the border from Somerset into Dorset, through Broadwindsor passing my first hill fort  Lewsdon Hill [272 metres] before starting the Alpine like ascent of Pilsden Pen [277 metres] the second Hill fort [ Alpine in the this case is a winding road with great views towards the coast at West Bay of Broadchurch fame and inland to Windwhistle hill]. I easily managed the climb in my second gear on my small chain ring , pleased with that!! a cracking descent down to the cross roads at Birdsmoor Gate before descending more to Marshwood then the long climb to the third hill fort of Lamberts Castle [256 metres]  passing Coneys castle the final hill fort of the Dorset hillforts.The Lamberts castle was the longest climb, Alpine like again but at an easier gradient, meaning I was able to use the third gear on my small 38 tooth chain ring.
A bit of level ground passing into Devon from Dorset as I headed for Hawkchurch, a village perched on a steep hill, a rapid, long and steep descent had my grabbing handfulls of brake lever to keep control on narrow road.The brakes of 30 years ago are not as efficient as todays models!! Every down has an up and found my self climbing once more through Holditch to Thorncombe and back into Somerset as I headed towards Forde Abbey and  back home.
A lovely ride 30 miles covered but over 2500 feet of climbing, quiet roads and lovely weather.
I managed another levels ride on Sunday another 35 miles but clocking up another 2000 ft of climbing, but this time I as on my Titanium bike!!!

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