2014-07-12 Dunwich Dynamo XXII

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  • T'was my first Dun run and longest fixed gear ride ever, running 52/18. I decided to go prepared for any eventuality which lead to a 6Kg backpack after all the tools, food and clothing was packed in.

    5 Various filled bagels, 750ml bottle, Bars, Nuun, 2 tubes, Puncture repair kit, Threaded Headset spanner + usual tools, 2 tops + extra socks, SLR Camera, Rain jacket, Lock...

    I set off at 5pm to meet up with a PQR & Clockwise on the way. The sun was shining, the ants were taking off from the cracks in the pavement and a crazy humidity meant the sweat was pouring as soon as I moved a muscle. It was a 40Km ride out to the start at London Fields in Hackney, taking in a nice route through Richmond park. Even here the atmosphere was noticeably relaxed, not the usual hell-bent crabon heroes looking for that ultimate 3 lap challenge time cutting you up. We pulled into London Fields around 7:30, grabbed our route cards and a beer and set off around 8:00.

    The pace was very mixed on the way out of London and our group of 3 was reduced to 2. PQR Phil and myself were looking to settle around a 15-16mph average, but we had no computers between us and I expect we were well below that at the start due to the sheer numbers on the road. After passing through Epping and some small towns we found ourselves leading a small group. It was dark now and between us side by side we just about spread sufficient light onto the road to comfortably see where we were going. This didn't stop us from taking a wrong turn and leading the group on a small detour. Its a shame it was a detour, we found ourselves in a good flow down the single track lanes cruising in what felt like the low 20mph's. Loosing confidence that at this pace we really should have passed someone we discovered we had taken a wrong turn. Thankfully we had been running parallel to the road everyone else was on, so it didn't take too much correction to put right.

    Finally the rain caught up with us which quickly turned into 2 torrential downpours in the space of an hour. We got soaked through, even with the rain jackets on and Phil slid out on a manhole cover. Thankfully no major injury or damage done we were soon on our way only for Phil to hit a blind pothole on a fast downhill left turn and flat his tyre. Whilst Phil was fixing up I went over to shine a light and shout out warnings, but regardless the amount of pinch flats, dropped bottles and accessories grew. Then the worst happened and a rider went down. I quickly pulled his bike out of the road, putting my foot down a water filled hole/ uncovered storm drain and nearly going down myself. a couple of mins later another rider went down. After 15 mins on the phone to the emergency services we was eventually told an ambulance was on its way and the victim had a couple of friends with him so we set off on our way again. I later learned that Warren had fractured his wrist and after waiting 2 hours for an ambulance he was finally taken to hospital by a good stranger.

    Once the rain had passed the humidity went through the roof! The air was thick, and every odour seemed amplified from sweet flowers to rotting vegetation and the stench from the farms. I was never to be dry again until we got home, and this played havoc with our comfort levels. Slowly the need to take a short stretch stop and a re-adjust increased with frequency, but so did the need to take on more food and water ( I think I took on around 4-5 litres in total) Our pace remained good for the majority, taking hills in a much quicker stride than our geared counterparts, although there were a couple of times I felt 76 Gear inches was a bit too heavy going!

    As we rode the final quarter the sky began to show some hints of colour again whilst lightning flashed and forked on the horizon. Thankfully this was heading out to sea so we were not destined to get underneath it, but it was a magnificent view. As dawn broke the miles seemed to take longer and longer. 40 miles...38 miles...35 miles... By this point I was loosing the power in my legs and the last 10 miles felt twice as long!

    We arrived on Dunwich beach around 6:30, a slight drizzle in the air which quickly passed, and lots of tired faces. We took in the views, a photo opportunity, then to the pub for a breakfast pint.

    Next I had to make my own way to Ipswich to get the train back to London. I had deliberately booked a mid-afternoon train so there was no pressure, and headed off up the A12. And there was lots of up! Long, slow grinds, but there were a few others making the same journey which was encouraging. 10 miles in I pulled over to take a break and a couple went past with a decent pace. I foolishly decided to follow, seeing them as a good wheel to pace myself to. 10 minutes later I bonked. I pulled over, drank the last of my water, ate the last of my bagel and hoped it would be enough to get me going again. Thankfully a petrol station was only 5 mins down the road so was able to stock up and slowly made my way into Ipswich town. I collected my tickets with 3 hours to spare. I had already enquired a few days previous if I could move my departure time if I wanted to and was told no, so I found an out-of-the-way corner, pulled my cap down and went to sleep. I was awoken after not too long by a member of staff. He told me they didn't want the station filling up with bikes and sleeping cyclists and hurriedly ushered me onto the next train. Result! A short ride through London and another train later I was home!

    It was a wonderful ride! The weather did make it uncomfortable, and would love to do it under a star lit sky next time, and maybe drop a few gear inches too. Will do again!

  • What a great post! Really sums up the mood of the ride. And I totally agree about the last 10 miles feeling twice as long.

  • 2 tubes of nuun :O that would require a lot of drinking :P, but the award for overloaded/pointless packs has to go to indra

  • I was just ahead of that first one, I heard this almighty cracking sound like breaking glass and turned around to see someone hitting the deck right in the middle of the bunch. Not sure but guessing from the sound it might Have been someone's frame or stem snapping in half??? Anyone know what happened?

    I think it was a seatpost clamp failure - guy was ahead of us. Almighty crack and bits flying everywhere. Bike continued upright and in a straight line for a bit! Looked sad holding his saddle and clamp bits :(

  • 12 hrs?! Well, well done for enduring it! Do you know who those critics were?

    And good on the rest of you - lovely to read the reports on here.

    in fact it was more than that! Started at 20:30, finished at 10:20! My knees are a little tender today.

  • LOST HELMET: Did any ladies leave a helmet? My friend found one in the ladies toilets. If anyone knows whose this may be please let me know.

  • DD = le tour

    Of course.

    This can >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>­>>>>>

    T'was my first Dun run and longest fixed gear ride ever, ..... Will do again!

    All of this, Chapeau!

  • I was riding with Jammy and the guys. Luckily managed to stay upright and avoid the hole of doom!

    I logged the hole on 'fill that hole' yesterday morning, so hopefully should get sorted soon. It was an absolute nightmare.

  • 2 tubes of nuun :O that would require a lot of drinking :P, but the award for overloaded/pointless packs has to go to indra

    Two inner tubes, that is. :)

  • Definitely packing more inner tubes next time. By half way our group of four had no spares left.

  • I was just ahead of that first one, I heard this almighty cracking sound like breaking glass and turned around to see someone hitting the deck right in the middle of the bunch. Not sure but guessing from the sound it might Have been someone's frame or stem snapping in half??? Anyone know what happened?

    I think it was a seatpost clamp failure - guy was ahead of us. Almighty crack and bits flying everywhere. Bike continued upright and in a straight line for a bit! Looked sad holding his saddle and clamp bits :(

    This was one of my mates... first stack of the night as his seatpost bolt somehow managed to snap in two (in the middle of the road, ahead of a massive group). After a bit of faffing trying to find a replacement he decided it wasn't going to happen so headed back. Amazingly we got a call from him later as he'd managed to get a huge bolt from some really kind guys at an off licence. A bit of pub stopping later he caught up with us & carried on. Happy days. :)

  • My mate Mark was the guy whose frame snapped in half at the dreaded pothole. I took a GPS fix for the loaction and reported it to CTC. The details are here should anyone need the location:
    http://www.fillthathole.org.uk/hazard/10­6152

    He's fine, scraped, bruised, but other wise sore.
    I rode on, got to Dunwich at 8am.
    I seemed to have been behind the rain because I frequently rode on soaking roads, but with no sign of any storm, just clouds of steam in the headlight. I spent most of the ride feeling too hot.

  • I was just ahead of that first one, I heard this almighty cracking sound like breaking glass and turned around to see someone hitting the deck right in the middle of the bunch. Not sure but guessing from the sound it might Have been someone's frame or stem snapping in half??? Anyone know what happened?

    That might have been my mate Mark. We heard shouting as we came around the corner, saw riders by the side of the road and then I heard this mighty bang/snap and a thump, followed by a loud groan. Stopped, turned back and Mark was lying in the road with his bike half under him. I thought at first he'd just come off, then saw that the bike was completely snapped in half.
    I hadn't realised there was a pothole at all, so at first though that the fork had snapped. Then he was asking what he'd hit and we saw the pothole.
    After a few minutes getting himself together he was able to get up and off to the side of the road. A lady helped him out with some first aid. I gave him a survival blanket, then we gave it to the guy with the smashed arm and got some road cones out of a field to mark out the danger spot - that seemed to work as other riders slowed and moved well out of the danger zone.

    Mark and the other fellow got lifts home and to hospital from our good Samaritans with cars and they've also stored the bikes.

  • Shame that pothole took so many casualties but glad nothing was really serious. Heal up soon fractured-wrist guy.

    I had a really great ride with Caz, Mule, Chris and the SPFG crew. Made a nice pace throughout the night, suffered only one crash but somehow managed to lose Darren in the darkness (sorry!). I also let my excitement get the better me and set a stupid speed up to Epping so I'm sorry for that too.

    We missed all the rain until we got to the beach, took it in turns with Indra to play questionable music through the country lanes, led a couple of groups for a while, led a couple of groups astray for a while, and had an all in all wicked time. Will ride again. Cheers to everyone we rode with and met along the way!

  • Bloody hell, a pothole big enough to break a frame? Hope your mate and everyone else is fine now. Makes me even more grateful that my group all missed it due to the guys shining a torch at it.

  • It also ended up being a fairly expensive ride for me as I managed to get my phone run over and bought a last minute ticket from Halesworth because my mega-conservative original booking from Ipswich was a full 12hrs after we rolled up to the beach.
    Next time I'll be more careful with my electronics and book an earlier train from Ipswich.
    Lesson learned

  • I was just ahead of that first one, I heard this almighty cracking sound like breaking glass and turned around to see someone hitting the deck right in the middle of the bunch. Not sure but guessing from the sound it might Have been someone's frame or stem snapping in half??? Anyone know what happened?

    You refer to my post, but I wasn't on the Dynamo. I rode that way much earlier in the day.

    I gave him a survival blanket, then we gave it to the guy with the smashed arm and got some road cones out of a field to mark out the danger spot - that seemed to work as other riders slowed and moved well out of the danger zone.

    Good work, Alex.

  • Thank you to any and all of the volunteers from the forum who helped make it such a great ride, it was my first time and I really didn't know what to expect. I didn't see the pot hole thank god, but we did manage to help out a dude who had a flat and didn't have the pit lock to take his wheel off!

    Went with a bunch of friends of different abilities so it was quite a relaxed affair. This meant that I had the legs to beast the last 15 miles, which was great. Thanks to the rider (Kanute?) who kept on pushing me forward. Never done a 15 mile dash before, but that was awesome.

    Swim. Breakfast. Beer. Breakfast. Beer and sleep. What a great ride.

    Is it wierd I want to do it again today?

  • Also, Clockwise, was good to meet you buddy. Hope you managed to get rid of those gels!

  • With the benefit of a good night's sleep, I think the main realization is that next year I want to do it on a Tandem, with a trailer... and that you don't need to go all the way to Chelmsford.

  • Also, Clockwise, was good to meet you buddy. Hope you managed to get rid of those gels!

    The girl I was cycling with had some and handed some out to randoms but still loads left. Tried a mule coffee one which was ming but maybe had potential to mix with water and be ok. Think I'm going to keep playing about with them to find something that works.

    Like 75% of the food I had was too much in the end 10 or so bars and 3-5 bagels was all I needed and even then could have got rolls and flapjacks at stops so travelled with nothing more than a pack of isotonic tabs.

    I agree with the wanting to do it again, has certainly perked my interest in cycling along random b roads outside the m25.

  • A really amazing ride, huge thanks to everyone in our group and great to meet some new people. Thanks to Kris and Caz who navigated for us, made it a whole lot easier.
    A few snaps from the day/night


    R0016343 by oliverkirman, on Flickr


    R0016345 by oliverkirman, on Flickr


    2014-07-13 01.28.26 1 by oliverkirman, on Flickr


    R0016383 by oliverkirman, on Flickr


    R0016393 by oliverkirman, on Flickr


    R0016409 by oliverkirman, on Flickr


    R0016414 by oliverkirman, on Flickr


    R0016422 by oliverkirman, on Flickr


    R0016466 by oliverkirman, on Flickr


    R0016488 by oliverkirman, on Flickr


    R0016492 by oliverkirman, on Flickr

    Really memorable ride, although I now feel like all of east anglia looks the same!

  • Epic photos Ollie! Makes me even more sad that I had to miss ride!

  • I love the "NO GARMIN NO RULES" sticker. You do that yourself? Brilliant.

  • Fantastic shots Ollie :)

    I saw someone with a "no garmin no rules" patch on his bag during the ride too.

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2014-07-12 Dunwich Dynamo XXII

Posted by Avatar for Zebra_Cyclist @Zebra_Cyclist

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