The Alpine Diaries – Entry 1

Yes, I’m back in the Alps – my second spiritual home, I guess you could call it. I absolutely love the mountains – the scenery, the crisp, clean air, and of course the frankly lunatic speeds achievable on a mountain bike.

Now, I say, lunatic speeds, but please remember this is me we’re talking about, so when I say lunatic speeds, I mean speeds marginally higher than I achieve in the UK. Wilma made the trip with me, which this time was relatively hassle-free (I even managed to successfully navigate Easyjet’s evil self-service bag check-in procedure – WIN!), and the first afternoon was spent checking her over and rebuilding her ready for the day’s riding.

GOPR6036-0001aAnd what a day! I’ve not hit anything too gnarly, preferring to acclimatise myself to the higher average speeds and the braking bumps – I’d almost forgotten how evil those things are. Still, I escaped with all limbs intact, and no teeth rattled loose from their sockets – double win! Still, it was a good day – I’ve hit a few new lines that I either hadn’t noticed before, or that have sprung up since my last visit. And I only got one flat! I managed to rip the valve stem off with a little less-than-subtle cornering…

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I do wish though, that people here would observe a little basic trail etiquette – I’ve seen (more than once) instructors stopping groups right across the trail. Yes, I know you’ve got to wait for the stragglers, I know you’ve got to show your groups the line, but come on guys, it isn’t hard to clear the way if you see someone coming at speed! Rant over, I intend to be fully Zen for the rest of the fortnight.

Now, someone pass the Mützig…

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