I realised that the offroad paths near my flat were no longer presenting any real difficulty, and I needed to set my sights higher. It was a lovely sunny afternoon so I drove out to Cramond Brig and rode Dalmeny Estate. From the carpark, I followed the trail north until it reached the water, and then through the woods at the shore – up and down over stones, ruts, muddy puddles and such like. Once I reached the crossroads with the layby, I headed southeast past the farmhouses, over the hill and back onto the main path back to Cramond Brig. Total distance of about 3.5 miles.
It was really good (but tricky) fun. Riding along on rough-ish ground is easy enough, although you need to be constantly adapting to the bumps. I ended up riding through puddles just to mix things up a bit. When the paths get muddier and more rutted, your options are dramatically narrowed. I’d often ride up a potential-energy dead end, stall and have to step off. Actually, afterwards I realised I should’ve switched to hopping more. When mounting on rough ground, I found it much easier to mount into a hop, get my feet adjusted right, and then ride off. I’m getting the hang of riding up steeper hills – I found that doing a half-pedal, then balancing, then another half pedal works on the really steep stuff. Going down actually seems harder than going up, but I learned that holding onto the seat makes it easier to resist the pedal’s tendency to lift you up off the uni.
Rar, mud and munis and sunny days!