Friday 25th October 2013

This hasn’t been a good week for cycling. The local weather has changed quite suddenly and we’ve had a days of strong winds and rain. Yesterday was an exception with blue skies and sunshine but unfortunately I had commitments which prevented me getting out on the bike.

Ian, Chris and I had planned to go out today but the weather is truly awful.


The next few days look a little more promising so hopefully I’ll see some cycling action on Sunday.


At 1 pm the rain stopped. the sky cleared and the sun shone so I got and headed off on the bike towards the Cycle Hub. It was such a nice autumnal afternoon I took my camera with me.


Even Percy Main looks good on a sunny afternoon.


In a previous post I wrote about the detour over the A19. It has degenerated into a muddy slide but the good news is that the original path is almost fully restored and should be open soon


The viaduct that carries the Tyne-Wear Metro line over the valley.


A view of the River Tyne looking east towards the Cycle Hub.


Gateshead Millennium Bridge.


A view of the Tyne Bridges looking west.

After a cappuccino in the Cycle Hub I headed for home with the sun setting behind me. As I reached Hadrian’s Road I became aware that my front tyre was punctured. I always carry a spare inner tube so I pulled onto the grass verge. Whilst fitting the new tube I became aware that the sky was darkening, I could see flashes of lightning and hear thunder. Once the repair was completed I set off hoping to get home before the storm broke. A mile down the road disaster struck – another puncture in the same wheel. I’d committed the cardinal error of not checking the inside of the tyre for bits of glass etc.

With my spare inner tube already on the bike I had no choice but to try a locate the puncture and repair it. By now it was getting dark and the storm was overhead. It took me a while but I found the hole in the tube, applied a patch, inflated the tyre and set off to complete the remaining eight miles home. Fortunately I had good lights with me as by now it was dark and the last part of my route was on an unlit cycle path.

Apart from a close encounter with a rabbit, the journey home was straightforward and I didn’t get the soaking I’d been dreading.