BB200 2023

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redefined_cycles
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Re: BB200 2023

Post by redefined_cycles »

jay91 wrote: Sun Oct 15, 2023 6:38 am Dnf for me .
Stuck front brake position not returning removed the pads and sprayed water on position but it wouldn't budge this was just before you turn for Llangurig
So rode Llanidloes for coffee Then taken Cycle route 8 back to the car arrived around 4pm
Still not a bad day out saw some different parts of hafren
Any ideas on how you'd prevent that for future. You're the second person who went back to the car after seized calipers. I keep thinking about shouldering the bike rather than walking it through the HAB. But... I assume it'd end up being a very long 'shoulder'.

Sorry to see you had to cut it short...
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whitestone
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Re: BB200 2023

Post by whitestone »

Shaf,

The first discrepancy is pretty obvious when you are there as the track on the ground keeps to the dotted line. The second one seemed to confuse a lot of people as most of the tyre marks kept going in the same track before correcting themselves an heading right to pick up the actual track/route.

The green dashed line of the definitive RoW bears no resemblance to anything on the ground.
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redefined_cycles
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Re: BB200 2023

Post by redefined_cycles »

Thanks Bob. Yes, I just looked at the track/line Slarge has left in Strava and seems to follow Stus route (what's the right word here... as I'm sure it's not 'nicely') accordingly. I'm guessing this area would have witnessed lots of swearing :lol:

Getting cold so waterprrof pants would probably be an idea!
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Boab
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Re: BB200 2023

Post by Boab »

That was probably the hardest thing I've ever done on a bike. 20 hours 20 minutes (ish). I just hope everyone got through the bollock deep river crossings of doom. Had to go back in and help slarge who was literally being swept away. 🫣

I'll do a proper update when I get home, but [insert diety here] it was cold at 03:00. Stumbled into the Wynnstay at 04:00, couldn't feel my hands or feet, a hot shower has never felt so good. If I hadn't asked for a room, I think I'd have been in serious, serious trouble.
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whitestone
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Re: BB200 2023

Post by whitestone »

Boab wrote: Sun Oct 15, 2023 8:32 am That was probably the hardest thing I've ever done on a bike. 20 hours 20 minutes (ish). I just hope everyone got through the bollock deep river crossings of doom. Had to go back in and help slarge who was literally being swept away. 🫣

I'll do a proper update when I get home, but [insert diety here] it was cold at 03:00. Stumbled into the Wynnstay at 04:00, couldn't feel my hands or feet, a hot shower has never felt so good. If I hadn't asked for a room, I think I'd have been in serious, serious trouble.
Cath bailed before getting there. Sounds like a sensible decision to me! She rode back to the centre through the night and said she struggled to get into the van as the doors were frozen solid :shock:

Thinking about last weekend the deepest bit of that track was close to Moel Prysgau bothy where another stream comes in from the left, it was about halfway up my thighs (I'm 1.8m tall), and was the only bit that had serious "flow". The other, faster, bits were much shallower but easy to navigate in the daylight, would have been very awkward at night and with muddier water.
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jay91
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Re: BB200 2023

Post by jay91 »

redefined_cycles wrote: Sun Oct 15, 2023 7:00 am
jay91 wrote: Sun Oct 15, 2023 6:38 am Dnf for me .
Stuck front brake position not returning removed the pads and sprayed water on position but it wouldn't budge this was just before you turn for Llangurig
So rode Llanidloes for coffee Then taken Cycle route 8 back to the car arrived around 4pm
Still not a bad day out saw some different parts of hafren
Any ideas on how you'd prevent that for future. You're the second person who went back to the car after seized calipers. I keep thinking about shouldering the bike rather than walking it through the HAB. But... I assume it'd end up being a very long 'shoulder'.

Sorry to see you had to cut it short...
I'm very lazy with bike maintenance and washing but it does seem to happen with these hope X2 brakes they need a small amount of silicone grease applied to the piston.
Trying to ride bikes.
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psling
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Re: BB200 2023

Post by psling »

Boab wrote: Sun Oct 15, 2023 8:32 am I just hope everyone got through the bollock deep river crossings of doom. Had to go back in and help slarge who was literally being swept away. 🫣
There was a tragic incident there some years ago (2008) when a 17 year old girl drowned after the 4x4 her father was driving got washed away crossing one of the fords on that track (after a long period of heavy rain). Stay safe out there.
We go out into the hills to lose ourselves, not to get lost. You are only lost if you need to be somewhere else and if you really need to be somewhere else then you're probably in the wrong place to begin with.
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Re: BB200 2023

Post by Hyppy »

redefined_cycles wrote: Sun Oct 15, 2023 5:47 am I'd be interested to find out too as to which is the official/intended route.
Image

Here's me (magenta) vs. the route (green) vs. the map for that same section which to be honest, made perfect sense when riding/HaBing it so I guess there was some kinda trod to follow. While not exactly taking a bearing there were a few legs you needed to look up to see where you were going and not focus on where you were, but that's par for the course on most boggy moorland, no?
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Re: BB200 2023

Post by Hyppy »

Boab wrote: Sun Oct 15, 2023 8:32 am That was probably the hardest thing I've ever done on a bike. 20 hours 20 minutes (ish). I just hope everyone got through the bollock deep river crossings of doom. Had to go back in and help slarge who was literally being swept away. 🫣

I'll do a proper update when I get home, but [insert diety here] it was cold at 03:00. Stumbled into the Wynnstay at 04:00, couldn't feel my hands or feet, a hot shower has never felt so good. If I hadn't asked for a room, I think I'd have been in serious, serious trouble.
Amazing effort! I commented last week how fortunate we'd been with the weather: I'm not sure I could have coped with this weekend's temperatures.
Alexinthepeaks
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Re: BB200 2023

Post by Alexinthepeaks »

Cant agree more, ive just come back from a couple hours riding around me in the Peaks and i cant feel my fingers or toes! Well done everyone!
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PaulE
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Re: BB200 2023

Post by PaulE »

Well, that was a bit chilly/wet/daft/strangely fun...

Positive points:
  • The stars in the early hours of this morning
  • The breakfast at Wynnstay
  • Some of the lovely, remote, twisty moorland tracks
The big fire road climb, after the silly steep road hills
The descent to the start of Strata Florida
The chat, camaraderie & pizza!
Getting round for a black badge at the first try[/list]

Less positive bits (which will probably become type 2 fun over the next day or 3:
  • freezing myself in the water, and then again on the lond road back to the finish
    The trackless monstrosity after the pleasant fire road climb (stu did tell me the name, but I forgot!)
    My cunning & smug plan of bringing 2 identical lights, so if one went wrong I could mix and match.... switch jammed on one, so I took the battery out to use in the other one... which promptly developed a jammed battery compartment!
All in all, a great but massively tough weekend - already planning to be back next year, but the 300 sounds beyond reach (so far)

p.s. Dee, if you read this, the food podcast I was on about at the end is series one of this https://spotify.link/lViEeZoOUDb
slarge
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Re: BB200 2023

Post by slarge »

Shaf, look at the map - the map path is right through boggy stuff. The detour goes round it. That part of Wales you follow the path on the ground....

That was a tough 200. Very Very wet on the ground. I think 18.5 hours total time, so Alex put an excellent time in!! If you have the strength and fitness to pedal through the slow stuff you'll go quick - if not then it's a push. Lots of pushing for me - in fact so much that my feet are sore!
The sunken road /rivers was getting dicey - a bum deep bit and then a super slippy fast flowing bit (thanks to Boab for helping me across as I nearly earnt my 25metre badge!)

Even the easier bits were hard with muddy ruts and wheel swallowing puddles.

Plus it got cold - from about 8pm last night it dipped to around freezing - and with wet feet there's only one outcome (but numb feet can't feel pain, or so I thought!)

Thanks to Stu and Dee - keeping up the consistency with route options, and fair play to anyone doing the 300 (not for me this year and I'm so glad I opted for the 200 - maybe next year I'll go for the 100)
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Re: BB200 2023

Post by slarge »

Nearly forgot- almost didn't even start.....

Got the bike out of the van on sat am and put the front wheel in - lots of rubbing from the caliper. The end cap had fallen off.... I remembered that the wheel had fallen over on my drive at home so my heart sank... checked the van anyway, no luck, so just considering my options and it was on the floor next to the bike. Happy days!
Would have saved cold wet feet though 😀
redefined_cycles
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Re: BB200 2023

Post by redefined_cycles »

I was actualy thinking I'll do the 3rd weekend edition (just me). But after Bob mentioned saving Steve and then the other couple of scratches, I reckon I'll just be crying with cold feet and a numb face.

Simon Ginger biker... If you're reading then mayne that local 100 miler might be tempting...
redefined_cycles
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Re: BB200 2023

Post by redefined_cycles »

PaulE wrote: Sun Oct 15, 2023 12:15 pm Well, that was a bit chilly/wet/daft/strangely fun...

Positive points:
  • The stars in the early hours of this morning
  • The breakfast at Wynnstay
  • Some of the lovely, remote, twisty moorland tracks
The big fire road climb, after the silly steep road hills
The descent to the start of Strata Florida
The chat, camaraderie & pizza!
Getting round for a black badge at the first try[/list]

Less positive bits (which will probably become type 2 fun over the next day or 3:
  • freezing myself in the water, and then again on the lond road back to the finish
    The trackless monstrosity after the pleasant fire road climb (stu did tell me the name, but I forgot!)
    My cunning & smug plan of bringing 2 identical lights, so if one went wrong I could mix and match.... switch jammed on one, so I took the battery out to use in the other one... which promptly developed a jammed battery compartment!
All in all, a great but massively tough weekend - already planning to be back next year, but the 300 sounds beyond reach (so far)

p.s. Dee, if you read this, the food podcast I was on about at the end is series one of this https://spotify.link/lViEeZoOUDb
Paul, was this your first attempt :-bd Solid solid ride. I'd just have cried at the cold feet and then got a numb brain!
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PaulE
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Re: BB200 2023

Post by PaulE »

Yep, first attempt, and seem to have picked a tough one to start with!

Another negative would be Simon getting COVID, so having nobody to share a lift with :(

And a positive is that feeling is starting to return to the feet, so hopefully no more damage done to previously frostbitten toes
redefined_cycles
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Re: BB200 2023

Post by redefined_cycles »

You hard as nails Sheffielder :-bd Amazing work mate. I take back anything I've 3ver said about them 7 hills of Sheffield being puny (compared to ours :lol: ).
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PaulE
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Re: BB200 2023

Post by PaulE »

redefined_cycles wrote: Sun Oct 15, 2023 1:42 pm You hard as nails Sheffielder :-bd Amazing work mate. I take back anything I've 3ver said about them 7 hills of Sheffield being puny (compared to ours :lol: ).
Possibly helped byy living on top of the highest of the 7? Or maybe just being too stubborn/idiotic to quit!
TeaFuelledMutantGingerBike
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Re: BB200 2023

Post by TeaFuelledMutantGingerBike »

PaulE wrote: Sun Oct 15, 2023 1:40 pm Another negative would be Simon getting COVID, so having nobody to share a lift with :(
Flipping that to a positive, you didn't have to wait around for hours in the freezing cold for me to finish once you'd already got back...
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fatbikephil
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Re: BB200 2023

Post by fatbikephil »

Well Done Boab, that one was a long time coming so good you bagged a toughie!
Plus well done others.
For that river crossing I removed boots and socks and paddled across just upstream of the carnage - twas only calf deep last Saturday :grin: (and warm although if I'd got my feet wet they would have frozen, even at 10 degrees...)
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thesloth
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Re: BB200 2023

Post by thesloth »

That was hard.
I’m encouraged to see that my impression matches the general consensus of others here.

Two of us had a crack at the 300 on the second weekend and didn’t get it done.
About 200km in it was obvious that we were going to be well out of time and so we pulled the plug and headed back to the HQ on the road.

Last year I finished the 200 with comfortable margin under 24hrs. This with a few stops and not riding near the limit. When I finished I thought I could “comfortably” do another 100km of this.
…well it’s sometimes good have the ego brought into check.
All BB routes are not created equal!

I couldn’t fault any equipment or preparation. Bike was good. Had all the right clothes and food. Navigation was good.
It was just too bloody hard!

The low point for me was the Doethie Valley. Path overgrown with bracken, slippery mud all on the side of a steep slope. Trees down that had to be climbed over or under. Technical pushing.
Had two falls. One comedy one where I slid down the slope headfirst on my back. The other less amusing where I slipped on rocks and bashed my elbow.
I confess that I did think bad thoughts about the director of this show at that point.

It got pretty cold on the big bad bog just after we rejoined the 200 route. Spotted two having a “desperation bivi” on the side of the trail. Bit of rain, bit of hail & some frost to finish.

Beautiful sunrise. Clear skies, cloud carpeting the valley floor.
It was lovely to be out there. But I was tired. Not sleepy tired, or legs tired, but full body exhausted.
We diverted off route to the Tescos at Llandrindod Wells. Breakfasted outside next to the trolleys in the sun. Did the maths and realised that 36hr Orange was well out of reach.

What would I do differently? Maybe time to find those running shoes and do a bit of cross training. I’m a slow walker and on a course like this that’s a penalty.

Massive thank you to Dee & Stuart. If any of the above sounds like a complaint, it’s definitely not!
It was great. Out of the four BBs I’ve done, I enjoyed this one the most.

The 300 will get added to the list of “unfinished business” (the list is longer than I’d like).
I’m thinking “Future courses can’t be any harder than that”
….Stuart: That’s not a challenge!

Good to meet others on the trail and at the HQ. Well done everyone.
Especially well done those that completed the 300!

A few photos and videos. Sadly none in the dark which is when the real fun times were had:
https://photos.app.goo.gl/pB4wcG9HB2ay7k6G6
Rumps
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Re: BB200 2023

Post by Rumps »

I’m the one who tried the 300 version with the Sloth. This was my 5th or 6th BB. All previous ones had been of the 200 variety. Always hard and a test - in a good way. BB is not meant to be easy and it isn’t. I had always finished in the past including one or two black badges. In other years things did not always go to plan but I finished .
Previous years included the vertical bogs year, the cold one where snow fell over night, the wet one where we had to reroute to avoid the impassible river and form a human chain to get the bikes across. But this year was the toughest . No question. Not just the quantity of pushing . It was the “degree” of it.
The Sloth has perfectly summarised our ride so I won’t repeat it.
I enjoyed Phil’s post of his ride the week before. As soon as I had finished it I called up the Sloth and shouted down the phone “dry feet”!!!!! It was impossible to have dry feet for very long this weekend. I knew what was coming as we drove up in heavy rain on the Friday . The curse of the second week had struck again.

It is a testament to the atmosphere and inherent character of the event that looking forward to the post Morten chat with Stu and Dee at the end is a highlight and helps keep me
Going. I just love that complete lack of Compromise . It is how it is and you have to accept it.

We were DNF, and I don’t recall that has ever happened to me before on any form of event, but I can live with it and it didn’t stop us from enjoying the experience even while we were enduring it.

So deepest thanks as always to both Dee and Stu for providing us with such an entertaining experience in which their personalities are so perfectly reflected.
redefined_cycles
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Re: BB200 2023

Post by redefined_cycles »

Thanks so much there for taking so much vid/camera footage. Am convinced now more than ever that I'd have come back slightly crippled. Well done once again :-bd
slarge
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Re: BB200 2023

Post by slarge »

The 200 is a test, the 300 a real test!
Well done to any who finish either! And to any DNFers- it'll be there next year!
redefined_cycles
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Re: BB200 2023

Post by redefined_cycles »

fatbikephil wrote: Sun Oct 15, 2023 7:04 pm Well Done Boab, that one was a long time coming so good you bagged a toughie!
Plus well done others.
For that river crossing I removed boots and socks and paddled across just upstream of the carnage - twas only calf deep last Saturday :grin: (and warm although if I'd got my feet wet they would have frozen, even at 10 degrees...)
Phil. I'm a bit confused (sorry if you've covered it in the blog post :smile: ) but you took your boots and socks off and paddled. But still didn't get your feet wet though it was calf deep :smile: ?
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