Posted by: Bruce Duncan | October 22, 2011

Back to the Lake District

So after a long time of hanging around the big London Village, I’m back up in the Lakes.  I moved back up on Thursday, bringing a full car of kit and bikes from the big smoke to my new place in Kendal, living with some good friends.

Maz enjoying the sunshine on the top of Dartmoor

London has been fun, especially the last few months, where I have purposely not been doing much training, more hanging out with friends, going out for dinner a lot, and having some much needed rest and relaxation after a busy few months racing.  But now its time to get back into my training, and London is not the place for that, well not for me at least.  I just can’t get the motivation to run around another park or up and down the river.

A lone surfer at Sour Mill Cove

To warm up for the Lakes I had a great 4 day trip to Devon with Maz.

We got some surfing in on Woolacombe beach, followed by some tough road riding over Dartmoor, it really threw some steep hills at us.

This was then followed by some great walking along the coastal path from Thurlstone to Salcombe with a run back for me, and then some fun kiteflying inbetween searching out some great scones and clotted cream.

I have only been up here a few days, and already its been non stop.  I was out first thing yesterday morning for a run up and around the Fairfield Horseshoe with Sally Ozanne.  The weather was pretty awful, strong winds and rain, however it was brilliant to be out running over the hills again, whatever was thrown at us.  We followed that up with a mountain bike ride from my dads in Portinscale around Glenderattera, one of the best short rides I think there is in the Lakes, a 90 minute blast that has everything in it, a social start on the railway line, a tough long climb up to the Blencathra Centre, a fast track decent, a few technical climbs followed by beautiful flowing single track and a super quick decent back to Keswick, perfect.

Quick outline of the Glenderaterra Loop

Last night a whole load of us headed out into Kendal for some beers, its magical to be able to get 3 beers for less than £10, and really good ones too!  So while around the table Matt invited me along to a ride from The Mill Yard in Stavely today.  It was to be a long one, 6+hours, heading all the way over to Coniston.  8 of us showed up to set of riding, and after the initial section over towards Troutbeck I was then onto unknown tracks.  It was great fun, the sun was shining and the lakes and mountains were looking amazing in the autumnal light.

Matt and Max riding through the woods above Low Wray

It was very wet and muddy under wheel, but that added to the fun.  We dropped into Ambleside, and then up around Loughrigg fell before heading over to Claife Heights.  Sadly, 2 ½ hours in I had to leave them.  My bike decided to start playing up, and my freehub is no longer free, seizing up frequently, making riding very difficult.  I left the others to head West still, and I dropped back to the ferry over Windermere and then up the steep climb back on the Crook road to Stavely, to a earned (well I think so) tea cake and rarebit at Wilfs Café.

I’m feeling the exercise in my legs, but this is exactly what I need to get back into my training, to be out enjoying the stunning scenery with great friends.

Looking over towards Windermere from Loughrigg Fell

I hope to be out most days over the next few months, running, biking and kayaking (both flat and whitewater) so its going to be a fun time.  I also plan to try and make some videos, I’d love to see what I can do with a GoPro camera while out training, it might lead to a new computer too, dare I enter the world of the Apple??

The Lakes are amazing at this time of year, getting quieter, (expect its half term next week!), with amazing colours in all the woods and on the fell sides, and crisp days to get out and enjoy all the brilliant trails and mountains.

Bring on the training.

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