Its dark and cold, its mid winter, wet and muddy… Why would anyone want to leave their warm homes and beds to go for a bike ride and to sleep in the woods. It appears there is an increasing number of these odd people wanting to do this.. And once again Mark, Nick and myself headed off on the bikes on a little overnight bike packing trip.
A manic few days back at work after the holidays means an evening out was much needed. We packed up the bikes with a lightweight setup and made our way out. It was cold and cloudy, but not raining. We soon warmed up with a ride up the hill, quickly discovering that we have worn too much. Arriving at the pub a few miles up the road it looks like we could have run there with the state we looked! A few beers later and we left the comfort of the fireside and geared up, switched the bike lights on and made our way off into the dark.
We climbed another short hill, following the last signs of habitation in the village. The tiniest of a snow fluffy fell and was gone in a blink. The road narrowed and twisted and we were approaching the woods. The wind had taken a lot of small branches down, riding up the hill in the woods was impossible, so a brisk push up the hill and we had arrived.
Under the tall canopy of firs the ground was soft and a little damp, we set out our bedding, quickly got comfortable. There was no wind at all, the woods were quiet and strangely warm. We crashed out around 11, and slept really well, the combination of the still night and comfortable ground made for near perfect bivi conditions.
Morning did eventually arrive, during the winter months 7am seems very late compared to the 5am starts in the summer. Id brought the lightweight cooker and cup for a morning coffee and fired it up whilst still in my bivi. Brew sorted we started to get packed up, squeezing the air out of the sleeping mats, pushing sleeping bags into drybags to re-attach to the front of the bikes. We set off around 8:30, taking a different route home down a particularly muddy road, at this point I was glad to be on the Mountain Bike 🙂
Another night out done, a bit more experience on packing the bikes.. 2018 is off to a good start!
Video Here – https://vimeo.com/250949225