Trying to get in plenty of practise on the T-ride in preparation for the 3-day Normandie adventure. Very conscious that all the other guys are vastly more experienced than me and I don’t want to be holding everyone up.

My regular short ride is to do what I call the “valley route” which probably takes 30 minutes or so and has some interesting technical bits. The “waterfall” is just below the house and is a steepish downhill section with lots of tree roots and two rock steps – pretty straightforwrd on the way down but quite challenging on the way back up. Then there is the “rock garden” which is like a dry stream bed with lots of rocks which needs good balnce and throttle/clutch control to get through without putting a foot down. At the other end of the valley is the “valley hill climb” which is steep, loose and with an S bend part way up – not easy to get right. Finally there is the “cenac trail”, a short piece of very narrow single track with a drop off on one side and a narrow gap between two trees to squeeze through – very hard to get through without at least one “dab”.

The Valley Route

I’ve been trying to find a trail route that I can use to get from the house into Cahors, using as little road as possible, and have gradually been exploring the little lines marked on the map which represent potential trails. One of the trails I have discovered drops down into Luzech and I used it on my way into Cahors. As you descend the trail there is a big drop off to the right and on the left is a post in the single track trail that you have to wriggle the handlebars round. On the way down I went past it with no problem, but remember thinking “oops I was a bit close to the edge there”. On the way back from Cahors later in the day, feeling tired and cold, starting to go dark I went up the same trail….

Only this time when I tried to wriggle the bars past the post I got it wrong, the bar hit the post and sent the bike over the edge of the drop off. I jumped clear but the bike slid down the slope and came to rest against a small bush a few yards down a very steep slope and in danger of slipping futher down.

I struggled for some time to drag the bike back up the slope but it was too steep/too heavy. Fortunately a walker happened to be passing and then a car stopped and with three of us we managed to recover the bike….

A bit of a close shave !

T-Ride Off