MEIDRIM

The knee op took place on the 17th July and seems to have gone well and walking up to now up to 2 miles and a 3 mile bike ride. The surgeon told me that he had found “age related” wear and tear and a mangled cartilage. All now tidied up and I should be fine.

The “Navigator” was back from a walking holiday in Chamonix and suggested a gentle half day walk near his homestead in  Meidrim

Here is the  route

I had forgotten the camera in my haste to start back walking, albeit just a half day.

There was only one stretch of off lane walking and that was a bash through some overgrown brambles etc.

Thankfully no after affects and hopefully a longer walk next week.

Advertisements

FOELGASTELL TO LLANDDAROG

A quick decision was made today to sneak a lift with Mrs Bob to her coffee morning meet in Foelgastell and then cycle back via the lanes which circle my home area.

Route

Here is where the “ladies’ hold their “coffee’ mornings!

The pub was advertising a  25 mile bike ride this Sunday with free grub at the end.  Not sure I can manage that distance without some breaks, so perhaps next year.

I did obey the following instruction, but wondered how the Tour de France boys descend so quickly.

After crossing the old A48 onto another lane I stopped to take a photo of the local mill. I can remember this mill making flour and taking the cub scouts to see how it was produced.  It looks like it has now been converted into a private residence.

Granny gear selected I slowly made the next hill and as I turned a corner I came across a buzzard dining on a new kill.  He saw me and flew straight at me, a close encounter.  No photo I’m afraid.

The climbs can be worth it for the views.

We still have some old sign posts.

My next stop was by a stream where quite some ago I would spend time catching small brown trout on home made flies.

Home in time to watch the professional bike riders.

LOUGHOR TO MUMBLES & RETURN

This ride was to be done next Friday but as the forecast was not favourable I did it today – benefits of retirement.

The route forms part of the National Cycle Network (NCN) route number 4 and is nearly all on shared cycle and walking and in parts horse paths.

Route

One lesson I learned today was that of map reading (my hill walking navigator will nod knowingly here!).  When walking it is easy to have the map to hand  and reasonably easy to check the route.  Similarly in a car when sign posts appear quickly.  Now with cycling it is in between and map in the backpack and I went wrong for about a mile and headed for Llanrhidian and not Gowerton.  This despite the NCN signs being very clear. Back on track and eyes peeled for NCN 4 I was soon heading the correct way.

I passed near the old Dunvant Brickworks and near here shared the trail with a horse rider.  I made myself known and slowly overtook.

 

The route then takes you through Clyne Valley and eventually the sea makes an appearance near Black Pill.

I suppose this could be classed as a Coast Coast ride, albeit one of the shortest.

There was an unusual piece of sculpture just near here.

Feeling good I continued west to Mumbles.  I stopped to take a couple of photos of two people enjoying a fairly new sport of Stand Up Paddling – something for the wish list.

I carried on and ended the outward run outside the famous (well locally) Verdi’s.  As I had forgotten the bike lock I just looked at those enjoying coffee and ice cream.

I cycled back to Black Pill and returned to the cycle track and found somewhere to have a quick brew and banana.

 

Refreshed I headed back to the car and almost beat the rain shower!

This was my longest ride to date and another to be recommended.

This may be my last for a short while as the knee op MAY be on 17th July

MY NEW LEAD OUT RIDER

I could have titled this to include “domestique” but I value my life!

Route

 

Anyway today’s ride was suggested by my better half and the bikes were quickly loaded and we headed off to the Tumble to Llanelli bike trail.  There was no plan to reach Llanelli!

This is a well used track, not only by bikes, but runners and walkers, all happy to say “bore da”.

The last time I came here an energy firm were erecting a solar panel farm.  Today all the panels were in place.  I hope they have come up with a way to change rain to power as the last few weeks have been wet to say the least.

We had a stop to admire the view over Pontyberem and not long after turned back to the car.

On route just in front of my face was a bright green caterpillar descending on a invisible thread from a tree branch.  We stopped and took some photos.  He/she clearly realised its mistake and started to reclimb towards the tree. I hope it made it back to safety.

Back at the car I decided to let Mrs Bob drive back and I would cycle home. It was a free wheel from Tumble to Drefach and then flatish to Porthyrhyd.

Here the hill up to my village in Llanddarog is one for the granny gear but somewhat pleased with myself I made it.

 

LLANDDAROG CIRCULAR

At last a rain free day! So today I thought I would ride from home in the village of Llanddarog and keep on lanes where possible and head towards Carmarthen along the Tywi Valley and back on what one could call a ridgeway in between two main roads.

Route

By the National Botanic Gardens I realised it was going to be a warm ride and took off a layer and carried on to join the B4300 and turned west towards Carmarthen.

At the junction to the above road is a fine old sign pointing east to Llandilo (not the Welsh spelling)

There is a set of traffic lights on this stretch which must be heading towards the record for length installation.  The reason being that the Afon Tywi is undercutting the road and no doubt the cost of shoring this up is off the scale.

I passed one house where there is a fine wood carving in the garden.

Opposite the road to Llangunnor Church (worth a visit) I turned uphill and headed for the “ridgeway”.

I am not sure how the Tour De France grades its climbs but to me it was at least a category 2 (or more). However engaging the granny gear and with a few stops to admire the view I made it to the top, where I had a welcome stop to devour a banana.

My route now turned east and headed back towards home.  There were quite a few ups and downs – which can be seen by clicking on my route map but also some fine views to the Tywi Valley and further east to the Carmarthen Fans.

 

I stopped by an old chapel which looked a little sad and probably no longer used.

Outside the chapel was a post box and a postie stopped to empty it.  She explained there is rarely anything in it as there are few properties hereabouts, but despite passing this every morning at 0800 she is not allowed to check it until later in the day!

I arrived back home some 2.30 hours after starting and felt just a little tired, but this was my longest ride and apart from the trip to Brechfa forest the one with most hills.  All good practice.

I like this old description of my village http://www.genuki.org.uk/big/wal/CMN/Llanddarog/