This was my third consecutive Festive 500. I was looking for a new twist in the string of rides that would form my 500km as I’d be covering pretty much the same ground as in the previous editions. I decided to try and tell the story of the rides through the camera lens, rather than words. Looking for photos whilst riding is always a joy and looking for new and interesting shots on very familiar roads is a challenge, which I hope I’ve met. I tweeted the photos as the Festive 500 progressed via Tumblr for immediacy and also loaded the photos on Instagram. Here in the blog, I’ve picked what I think are the best shots and added a few more words about my journey to completing the Festive 500 challenge. A new personal best mileater annual mileage of 17,039 miles (27,442km) would also be achieved by New Years Eve.
Preparation Testing the deep-water cycling shoes seemed essential as the forecast was for another wet Festive 500.
24th December 2013 Off to work was the order of the day for the night before Christmas. Getting off work early, I took the opportunity to ride the lanes home. The rain gods did visit and they gave a feeling of déjà vu.
Festive 500 2012 revisited!
A wonderful sunset ended the day as Scotti the roadified MTB bagged the first kms towards the Festive 500.
25th December 2013 Was the traditional (for me) Christmas Day 200km permanent brevet from home to Munsley Acre with the Bike Butler for the Marlboro AC Christmas holiday.
A visitation from a rather too merry Pst….. Fairy, mere kms from home
A traditional randonneur’s Christmas day lunch!
A crisp and bright day showed the Cotswolds off beautifully
Twinkle light at Newent with only a handful of kms to the arrivee and Christmas dinner with the Marlboro AC, my father’s old cycling club.
26th December 2013 Boxing day started off foggy before icy sunshine led to a beautiful day a-wheel with a small Marlboro AC peloton.
The sun rises over the Malvern Hills
27th December 2013 Time to head home, up and over the Cotwolds and then the Chiltern Hills. The day started off with heavy rain showers but, by Stow-on-the-Wold, had ‘fined up’. However the promised tail wind failed to show!
Stanway looked superb as we grovelled our way to Stow-on-the-Wold
and a proper lunch at the CTC-approved St Edwards cafe.
28th December 2013 Time for some erandonneuring with Scotti back on duty, having spent the Christmas holiday at Munsley Acre on Zoe C, a flat-bar Condor cyclocrosser.
29th December 2013 Rain stopped play; a zero km day.
30th December 2012 More Erandonneuring for a few more kms in the bank.
31st December 2013 My last opportunity to collect kms for both the Festive 500 and the mileater diary.
The perfect sign to farewell 2013 and to greet 2014.
|By Zoe C||468km|
|Shopping trailer loads||2|