MTB day at the Ladybower Reservoir, Peak district.

Posted by Paul​ Walton on July 08, 2017 0 comments

Been meaning to hit up the Ladybower Reservoir for some MTB fun for years but never got around to it.. I had everything needed to enjoy my day, a new Trek 29'er and my Garmin to follow a downloaded 30 mile gpx route, so what better day than yesterday, a beautiful (and rare!) sunny English day.. When I arrived at the Ladybower Inn car park I needed a coffee after driving 78 miles among your usual polite, well rounded, steady drivers on the roads ( if THAT ever happens)! After that it was time for me to hit the trails, problem was I didn't have a route to follow on my Garmin, for some unknown reason, and I am positive it was absolutely NOTHING to do with me... my downloaded data just wasn't there!! Not a good start! Oh well, I'll just dive straight in with my superb sense of direction and hope I don't end up terribly lost or stuck in a peat bog and leave a shoe behind...again!!
You can click on image to view an enlarged photo slideshow..

So five hours and, to be honest...not that many miles later I'm back where I started....and I LOVED it!! Seriously huge smiley faces here.....think I may have taken as much time taking the photos as I did riding but damn did I enjoy it!!
The climbing was hard...the downhill was hard...the drop offs were big and the boulders were often like mountains....but I'm definitely up for going again.....shame about the long drive home ..but of course it was with all the same wonderful drivers that were so courteous on the way over!!
No doubt I'll be paying for it by morning .......

Trip to Kielder water, Northumberland

Posted by Paul​ Walton on June 10, 2017 0 comments

Last year we went up North on holiday, so I took the chance to visit Kielder National park with my trusty mountain bike. Had far too much fun riding to take any photo's. So here is a few my missus took whilst walking with her dad!

You can click on image to view an enlarged photo slideshow..

Dad walking the dog along a trail at Kielder water!

Smooth single track through the woods!

Trojan taking a breather!

Preparing to mark his spot!

Playing hide and seek next to a stream!


Cannock chase trail's

Posted by Paul​ Walton on May 11, 2017 0 comments

Cannock Chase trails is the most visited destination in Staffordshire. With 28 square miles of "outstanding natural beauty" and a popular destination for all mountain bike enthusiasts. Lets see why, and what the chase has to offer...

Getting to the Cannock Chase visitor center for the first time was a very frustrating task, due to it's location. It can be easily missed, depending on which way you come from. When I arrived at the 'Birches Valley Visitor Center' and see the amount of visitors, I became anxious to get on the trails and hopefully have some fun.

I had been reading a lot about the 'Follow The Dog' trail in magazines and online, so it was my intention to try it out and see what the fuss was about.
As I entered the trail under start banner next to the visitor center bike shop, it was apparent that it was going to be one hell of a ride that would kick my ass the following day.

The surface of certain area's of the trail was very hard so the going was good and encouraged me to go faster, catching a glimpse of the dog in the tree's.
As I raced on like a maniac, careful not to lose an elbow on a passing tree. I started to anticipate every little turn like a child waiting for their gifts on Christmas morning but I think my excitement and shouts of exclamation could even put them to shame!

Spending a few days on the chase I thought it only right to explore and venture further afield. Once I decided on a route to take and got my bearings sorted, I found myself exploring the family friendly parts of Cannock Chase trails. As you can see from the pictures, the terrain changes from hard packed stone, soil to loose sand and stone.

Cannock Chase has pretty much catered for all mountain bike enthusiasts, so you will never get bored riding here. The facilities are excellent too and all the amenities are faultless. They have a bike shop, bike wash, clean toilets and cafe. Don't expect more than a jacket potato or toasties though.
On bank holidays take a good pack up or have some other means of food because those jacket spuds & toasties sell fast.
You can click on image to view an enlarged photo slideshow..


Avid Elixir CR Carbon Disc Brake - 2009

Posted by Paul​ Walton on June 02, 2011 0 comments

Avid 2009 Elixir CR Carbon front and Rear Disc Brake-Right Lever 1400mm hose

* Tapered Bore Lever with Integrated Reservoir
* Tools free contact adjust and reach adjust
* Two-piece calliper with adjustable banjo
* Carbon lever blade
* Top loading pads
* MatchMaker compatible
* DOT 5.1 standard
* G3 clean sweep rotor design
* 160, 185mm
* Weight: 369g

After dragging myself away from gaming and recovering from a really bad lower back strain I decided to get out and test the new brakes that I was so clearly forced to buy after my avid 5s front piston ceased up on me ^^ After some searching for a replacement brake I came across exactly what it was that would pimp my bike up, The Avid Elixir CR Carbon Disc Brake - 2009 from Chain Reaction Cycles at £69.00 each  without rotors. Not getting any rotors posed no problem due to the fact that I already had some,,, bargain comes to mind..  :-)

The brakes took  2-3 short  rides to bed in but when they do get well bedded in you know about it as I did today.. The bite these babies have is amazing, totally different compared to some of the other avid models.
What really stood out to me was the fact that once set up the brake had no signs of disk rub whatsoever! To sum things up I would say that the brakes feel good and they catch the eye (more than once) when fitted also the contact pad adjustment is a nice feature. But two things caused fitting problems for me.

1) The arrow on one of the contact pad adjuster units is pointing the wrong way..
2) The hose for the front brake is way too long (in my personal opinion).

For me these brakes rock though and I would have been prepared to pay a little more for them. Its a shame that they are discontinued at Chain Reaction Cycles because I know you would love them too!!