Monday, 9 September 2013

Sunshine Of Your Love...Monday 9th September 2013.

Blitzkreig playing from Ginge, Jack & Eric!

So the first stage 'proper' begins...17's effort is 9500' of climbing and 90 miles going forward...we hope. The weather forecast was iffy to put it it proved!

The Mild Bunch.

A shower faffing.

More faffing...

And they're last!

All running ok until one of our number (Sammy) suffered a major mechanical: his rear derailleur mechanism sheared clean 'awf! The consensus was that the rear hanger took a whack in transit and thankfully there was a spare of sorts available and after 30 mins of more feverish faffing we were away again...

End of play? No way...Sammy was back on the road after 30 mins or so.
We had one minor climb to warm-up on with a tasty descent before re-grouping and heading to our cafe stop, only to find that the cafe was closed! On a Monday? Disgrace. A nearby Agip forecourt and shop did a roaring trade instead and after a protracted break we then headed off again with Il Tractore and myself attempting to drive things on. Well, he did 2/3rds of the work as usual but it's the thought, right?

...and the start of the major play. Looks benign, right?

Man-Machine er, Landscape interface. Die Werk!

Whether it was arrogance or just plain stupidity I don't know but I started the serious climb of The Gross Glockner without having eaten nearly enough food: maybe I only remembered how I enjoyed relatively good form in The Pyrenees last August and blithely assumed that I'd enjoy the same fortune now. Wrong!

Would've been glad of the order.
We continued the climb and I basically ran out of gas...the last 6 miles were bloody awful, with temperatures dropping, rain falling more steadily and visibility reducing. All good, really. Complete rookie move by yours truly in not giving my engine a fighting chance by fuelling it, and I am old enough and stoopid enough to know better.

Unreal. A tandem. With a trailer. Again, unreal.

And we're now IMC.

Gratuitous beaver shot. I know my audience.

This is what it should've looked like...on the way down wearing 8 layers and thawing out. At 45 mph.

From there the work wasn't over- we still had a testing headwind and a charming onset of rain to get through...we did it and it felt tremendous to have been the first home...we stayed at a nice hotel complete with a purpose-built drying room which makes admin so much need to scrounge yesterday's newspapers, hah-hah!

Excuse the same shots but it just is magnificent! When you can see it.

Always on the righteous. Apparently.

Pot of gold? Il Tractore, more like.
So ended a fairly full-on day...we go again tomorrow. Usual script, please share this with your pals as the aim is to get money for the charities. I'll leave you with Eric & Peter!

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