Why staying in bed can be good for you

The Clyro venue is usally an excellent one and being on a wooded hill, the snow fall isn’t normally a problem. However, overnight temperatures of -13 C were and everything was frozen solid.

Got there fairly early, so I could spend longer freezing in the car park at the Clyro Court Hotel, and it was Scandiwegian cold (been in Tampere, Finland at -20 C) when everything exposed just hurt. An entry of 25 or so, but amazingly quite a few observers as well (?!! why !!).

Not a Majesty,

Whilst the modern bikes were in the majority, it was an all Japanese twinshock line up, with Kevin’s Honda TL / XR hybrid and Mark Vaughan’s TLR200, complementing the 6 Yamaha’s, which included two TY175’s, a TY250, a Majesty 200, a Majesty 250 and Terry’s 200 Whitehawk. The question is would have a Montesa or Bultaco started in the cold.

The TY175 fired up reluctantly and headed over to the woods and the 14 sections. The first section set the tone, as the rocks were frozen and there wasn’t a lot of grip. A 5, on a section I can normally clean.

All the sections were hard, in both sense of the work. Rock hard. The stream sections, which are the feature ones at Clyro had seen some water flow and the waterfall here had changed a lot. Two ‘3’s here on sections I can clean (see the YouTube clip from last January) but hard work.

Snowy wastes of Clyro

Even the easy section 11 was just an ice rink, so touching the rear brake ended everything here. Not straightforward at all. Section 12 and a clean and then a new section 13 at the very bottom of the stream (see YouTube cllip below)

End of the first lap, and Kevin decided to call it at day and I also considered stopping as things weren’t getting easier, but at least managed to get through sections 1 and 2 this time. Section 3 was a lot harder and took a 5 on the normally easy bank here. Andy and a few others also saw sense in not continuing and heading back to the vans at the bottom of the hill.

Anyway, the clincher was the stream sections and a failed attempt to tackle the ice-strewn waterfall that even Chris Bonnington would have thought twice about. Ended up with the bike on top of me, which being a TY175 wasn’t too bad.

Slush and ice

Just thinking about a second attempt when someone pointed out the broken rear brake plate. Time to call it a day. In the end, the Ledbury club made the right decision and called time on the whole trial during the 2nd lap.

Half a break plate

A limited amount of video footage and even this doesn’t portray how cold it was (though notice the ice and slush on the stream sections).

Still cold at the end of the trial, but up to a balmy -3 C. And now have another bike to fix, along with the other projects in the shed. At least I’ve got some spares, having recently acquired 2.5 TY175’s from Tredegar.

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