HT550 2021

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sean_iow
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HT550 2021

Post by sean_iow » Wed May 05, 2021 7:44 am

Couldn't see a thread for this years HT550 so thought we'd better have one ready :smile:

Richpips is riding to the start as we speak and conditions looked bleak :sad:

I also spotted that today's forecast in Kinlochewe is sleet showers. Given the recent weather is the first winter completion going to be the first back on this years group start? :wink:

So, who's in? Route changes? (I see it's the south side of the Loch Lyon) Thoughts on resupply? Are the shops and pubs still open?
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ScotRoutes
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Re: HT550 2021

Post by ScotRoutes » Wed May 05, 2021 7:54 am

FWIW, snowing here again this morning.

Image

Overnight temps still below freezing until the weekend at least.

I believe Rich gave up yesterday and should be back home by now.

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Re: HT550 2021

Post by sean_iow » Wed May 05, 2021 7:59 am

ScotRoutes wrote:
Wed May 05, 2021 7:54 am
I believe Rich gave up yesterday and should be back home by now.
:cry: I don't blame him, it looked proper grim in the pictures. There's the added problem of not being able to sit in a warm cafe whilst you thaw/dry out at the moment, sitting on a table outside just isn't going to cut it.
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Re: HT550 2021

Post by ScotRoutes » Wed May 05, 2021 8:04 am

Cafes are open - pubs too if you don't want alcohol.

It did, indeed, look grim though. That shitty combination of wet AND cold.

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NewRetroTom
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Re: HT550 2021

Post by NewRetroTom » Wed May 05, 2021 9:01 am

Brrr!
Gutted I'm not going to be there. Looks like the practicalities of getting there from France would have been a bit of a headache this year anyway even if I didn't have other reasons for not being able to make it.

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Re: HT550 2021

Post by sean_iow » Wed May 05, 2021 10:03 am

ScotRoutes wrote:
Wed May 05, 2021 8:04 am
Cafes are open - pubs too if you don't want alcohol.
Ah, outdoors seating only south of the border at the moment.
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Re: HT550 2021

Post by sean_iow » Wed May 05, 2021 10:07 am

NewRetroTom wrote:
Wed May 05, 2021 9:01 am
Looks like the practicalities of getting there from France would have been a bit of a headache this year
Looking at the start list it does appear that only the uk entries have confirmed for this year?
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Re: HT550 2021

Post by redefined_cycles » Wed May 05, 2021 10:10 am

sean_iow wrote:
Wed May 05, 2021 7:59 am
ScotRoutes wrote:
Wed May 05, 2021 7:54 am
I believe Rich gave up yesterday and should be back home by now.
:cry: I don't blame him, it looked proper grim in the pictures. There's the added problem of not being able to sit in a warm cafe whilst you thaw/dry out at the moment, sitting on a table outside just isn't going to cut it.
Yup... 3 minutes he tweeted that he's back home now. He cited 'it was cold up there' so I imagine it must have been bloomin freezing when he decided to turn back.
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Richpips
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Re: HT550 2021

Post by Richpips » Wed May 05, 2021 11:56 am

It's defo worth checking what is open.

Last summer Oykel Bridge were open, but only to residents.

The rules in Scotland say that you can eat in pubs and cafes unlike down here which is something.



/aside : Originally I wasn't going to take waterproof socks, full length waterproof trousers or a "spare" primaloft jacket. :lol: :lol: :lol:

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Re: HT550 2021

Post by sean_iow » Wed May 05, 2021 12:04 pm

Pleased you've warmed up :-bd It looked properly horrible in the pictures. How was the Outdry jacket? Did it keep the water out? Looking at your pictures reminded me I need a better jacket.
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Re: HT550 2021

Post by Richpips » Wed May 05, 2021 12:40 pm

sean_iow wrote:
Wed May 05, 2021 12:04 pm
Pleased you've warmed up :-bd It looked properly horrible in the pictures. How was the Outdry jacket? Did it keep the water out? Looking at your pictures reminded me I need a better jacket.
I can honestly say that jacket saved me. I've just checked I was rained, sleeted and snowed on for over 9 hours. When I took my stuff off, my under layers were dry.

I've just bought another as a spare.

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Re: HT550 2021

Post by robbie » Wed May 05, 2021 2:23 pm

Think there are a few more route changes, coffin road and postmans path out i believe. Never ridden any of that so dont have anything to base the new changes on. Not sure about the bothies this year. Don't believe they will be open.

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Re: HT550 2021

Post by ScotRoutes » Wed May 05, 2021 2:34 pm

MBA bothies should NOT be used unless in an emergency (life-threatening) situation. That might change on or around 17th May.

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Re: HT550 2021

Post by Dave Barter » Wed May 05, 2021 2:41 pm

I have to miss out this year due to the current Mrs Barter turning 50 and associated celebrations
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Re: HT550 2021

Post by boxelder » Wed May 05, 2021 2:44 pm

I presume the "current Mrs Barter" doesn't read your posts here :lol:

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Re: HT550 2021

Post by pete68 » Wed May 05, 2021 2:59 pm

sean_iow wrote:
Wed May 05, 2021 10:07 am
NewRetroTom wrote:
Wed May 05, 2021 9:01 am
Looks like the practicalities of getting there from France would have been a bit of a headache this year
Looking at the start list it does appear that only the uk entries have confirmed for this year?
James hayden is down as confirmed I think. The travel rules may have eased just in time or can he travel as an elite athlete?

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Re: HT550 2021

Post by htrider » Wed May 05, 2021 6:58 pm

Richard, it always seems to be horrible weather when you try to do an ITT ahead of the group start! Glad you survived.
I'm thinking it could be a wet and cold one again as this period of unsettled weather seems quite settled. UK only riders and a fair few from up here. I'm wondering on availability of digs for cheeky hotel nights if the weather really goes pair shaped - I think this could be a major challenge. Alan is requiring everyone to carry a shelter in view of closed Bothies but 5 nights under a tarp in the rain??

Oh well take it as it comes. I'm 80% certain I'm going with singlespeed but now fretting over gear ratios :roll:

Re routes for this year are:- South side of Glen Lyon instead of North, Loch Damph instead of Strath Mulzie which is a nice route and passes another bothy (which we can look at...) and Auchindrean path and Loch a Bhraoin instead of Coffin road and Dundonald climb. Still not sure if this will take longer or not - longer distance but a lot less climbing. Proper hardcore trail into Strath na Sealga though.....

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Re: HT550 2021

Post by robbie » Wed May 05, 2021 7:32 pm

I'm lead to believe that the long range forcast is for some warm weather towards the end of May :-bd
Not saying it wont rain though :lol:

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Re: HT550 2021

Post by sean_iow » Wed May 05, 2021 7:48 pm

htrider wrote:
Wed May 05, 2021 6:58 pm
Oh well take it as it comes. I'm 80% certain I'm going with singlespeed but now fretting over gear ratios :roll:
For my ITT last year I'd intended to use..... a full sus with gears :lol:

I used 34/20 in 2018 (650B) and 32/18 in 2019 (29er) but bailed at the end of the first day in 2019 and can't really say I'd paid much attention to the suitability of the gear ratio. It is a tricky route to choose the ratio as there's a mix of hilly bits, flat bits and road bits. Obviously a personal choice, I prefer a higher ratio as I'm not much of a spinner. Javi always seems to have a lower ratio than me and it doesn't seem to slow him down even on the flat bits :smile:
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Re: HT550 2021

Post by Landslide » Wed May 05, 2021 8:28 pm

this period of unsettled weather seems quite settled.
This is the perfect British weather forecast.

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Re: HT550 2021

Post by htrider » Wed May 05, 2021 8:59 pm

sean_iow wrote:
Wed May 05, 2021 7:48 pm
I used 34/20 in 2018 (650B) and 32/18 in 2019 (29er) but bailed at the end of the first day in 2019 and can't really say I'd paid much attention to the suitability of the gear ratio. It is a tricky route to choose the ratio as there's a mix of hilly bits, flat bits and road bits. Obviously a personal choice, I prefer a higher ratio as I'm not much of a spinner. Javi always seems to have a lower ratio than me and it doesn't seem to slow him down even on the flat bits :smile:
Oof 32/18?!, I'm 32/21 with 29+ and thinking of 32/22.....
30/21 would have been better on the LLTL as there isn't much flat road riding but aye there is enough 'easy' stuff on the HT to make me think that what I've got will be OK.....

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Re: HT550 2021

Post by ChrisS » Thu May 06, 2021 12:48 pm

I'm in for the group start. I've done a couple of shorter ITTs but never anything on this scale. For your entertainment, and so I can get it off my chest, here's a list of the things that are currently worrying me...

1. My left knee
2. That I won't be nearly fit enough
3. That my technical skills are too rubbish
4. A tarp + bivy won't be enough
5. I'll blow up on day one
6. A major mechanical
7. I'll oversleep and miss the start
8. I won't get any sleep the night before the start
9. Something else as yet unidentified but nonetheless important

I'm brimming with confidence me :lol:

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Re: HT550 2021

Post by sean_iow » Thu May 06, 2021 12:58 pm

You'll be fine, I've added my comments to your worries :grin:
ChrisS wrote:
Thu May 06, 2021 12:48 pm

1. My left knee - Pedal with one leg :wink:
2. That I won't be nearly fit enough - If you made it round the LTL you're fit enough
3. That my technical skills are too rubbish - Nothing more technical than the LTL. I made it round and I don't have any technical trails to practice on, I had to learn the skills as I went :smile:
4. A tarp + bivy won't be enough - That's all I took, as long as the bivi keeps the midge out? I didn't even put the tarp up when it was dry
5. I'll blow up on day one - Lasagna and chips in Fort A is the cure for that
6. A major mechanical - Go fully rigid singlespeed :wink:
7. I'll oversleep and miss the start - Just start late and catch up, it's 550 miles
8. I won't get any sleep the night before the start - Does anyone?
9. Something else as yet unidentified but nonetheless important - River crossing, don't forget to fret about them, they were my main worry before the start :grin:

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Re: HT550 2021

Post by ChrisS » Thu May 06, 2021 1:13 pm

sean_iow wrote:
Thu May 06, 2021 12:58 pm
You'll be fine, I've added my comments to your worries :grin:
That is great Sean, thanks :grin:

As for single speed, I have thought about it every now and again. I was massively inspired by Katie and Andrew Strempke's account of their Colorado yo yo on single speeds last year and loved Andrew's SC Chameleon setup. Think I would stick with squishy forks though!

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Re: HT550 2021

Post by htrider » Thu May 06, 2021 1:57 pm

A thing I always think about - some very fit people have failed, some (comparatively) unfit people have succeeded. Nous and keeping a level head are more important than fitness. I think with the start format this year there will be no chance of tearing off in the bunch so much easier to go your own pace.

I've done a lot of thinking, remembering and geograph research to suss out sheltered spots for bivvies. Still havering over flat tarp or Deschutes...

There is a fair bit of madly techy riding on route ( :-bd ) but getting off and walking these won't lose you any time. There aren't any spectators so no-ones goin to know :wink:

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