Reliability Trial Avonmouth Mendips 10 February 2013
In a word, wet
There comes an equilibrium in every ride the moment where warm muscles and fitness perfectly complement each other and the bike rolls forward, friction and effort free. There’s another external equilibrium for the rider who braves the adverse conditions, Rule 9, the point where the environment outside the rider is equal to the environment inside the rider’s outfit. The point at which this equilibrium is reached is dependant upon a number of factors, quality of clothing and initial temperature difference, to name two.
Achieving this second equilibrium condition was, in the case of Sunday’s Reliability Trial, extremely undesirable. However, all riders managed to reach this point prior to the short route cut off.
It is often difficult to discern between the brave and the foolhardy. The case in point being that the majority of riders opted to continue on the full route, despite having reached the specified equilibrium conditions.
Once on top of the Mendip Hills and fully exposed to the conditions the wisdom of this decision was confirmed. Temperatures plummeted and the rain became horizontal instead of vertical. Fortunately this also signified the point of turning for home, and was well past the actual half way distance.
The (fool)hardiness of the rider who sees the situation move past the above equilibrium is something to be admired, and is a strong step in the process of unifying riding companions against the cruelty of the elements. Paradoxically it is the making of the ride. Misery loves company?
Congratulations to all those who completed the distance, and shame on you all who stayed in bed!
Clearly the images that accompany this post are largely irrelevant to the ride, but Le Sportif has come across few better examples of a steed suitable for winter riding conditions. Happy days!