Snowdon Preparation

Oh god what have I agreed to…

Steve has been pushing me to come mountain bike down Snowdon for a while and finally I had relented.

After spending few weekends this summer in the South Wales going to to bike parks and mountain biking around the Brecons I am at the height of my mountain biking ability. But after having agreed to this mountainous plan, I watched a few YouTube videos of the route. It looks a lot tougher than I thought it would be.

The plan is to park at the bottom of the Rangers path, cycle around the base of Snowdon to Llanberis and then bike up the Llanberis path to the summit before returning down the Ranger track to the vans. It sounds nice and easy until you realise that the route up Snowdon is both taller and less distance than the route we did at the Brecon beacons called the gap. This means I shall be cycling up a far steeper incline and I know from walking it b fore, that there shall be no respite on route as it is a straight path to the top.

Well I might be as good a cyclist as I ever have been, but the mountain bike does need some maintenance. On the run up to this excursion I tried to have a few things replaced but the the logistics conflagration caused by Brexit has meant parts are difficult to come by. During a recent trip to bike park Wales I managed to dent my rear rim quite significantly and now I’m a little hesitant about the wheels stability under load. I need to get the rim replaced but I’ve not been able to source a suitable one in the last two weeks. There are also a few bearings that need attention and the front forks need servicing.

To get some of this seen to, Aimi very kindly offered to take my mountain bike into the workshop while I was away in Glasgow for the week. She doesn’t like to drive the van very often but put the bike in the back of a car and had to take off the front wheel to do so. When she took off the front wheel she did not notice one of the axle spacers had dropped out onto the floor and rolled away. This meant that when we tried to go for a ride in the Peak District with Steve as training for Snowdon, my front wheel couldn’t be used and Steve had to provide a replacement. It’s not her fault as she’s not very mechanically minded and I should have told her there was spacer on the axle.

After the ride we we went past the bike shop and checked the car park for the spacer  Luckily we found it saving me the trouble of ordering a new one and the inevitable lack of stock and long waits to replace it.

So I prepared the motorbike the best I could. I serviced the rear hub and ensured all the bolts were tight and I have had a good brake pads in. Now I’m on my way to Snowdon. It’s early in the day so I’m meeting up with Steve in Ogwen valley to walk up to the lake under Idwall slabs as an easy outing. 

Just as I was pulling up to park, 2 old prop planes shot around the corner of the valley very low to the ground. It was amazing to see, but I wasn’t quick enough to get my camera out. Not long after that a rescue helicopter went overhead too… only one reason for that to be out in the mountains.

I’m very conscious that this mountain bike trip should go well, as in 3 weeks we should be going off on our long awaited holiday to Egypt Greece Turkey Cuba Mexico. I’m going to be taking it easy on the descent and not taking too many risks because I don’t want to injure myself. I know that Aimi would be apoplectic if I hurt myself and stopped us from going.