Tuesday 22nd July 2014.

A warm bike-ride around Radcliffe and Bury ooparts this morning. It was quiet around the railway yards – not much doing these days ‘Steam-wise’.
ju49 And along the viaduct ‘up’ path Raspberries are in profusion…
ju50…there are plenty but such stuff is, these days, an oopart. Me mate doesn’t get along the viaduct much lately either, so around here he too is an oopart perhaps!
Further along the ride the new bridge by the sailing club is much better.
ju52And leads to the massive oopart of Elton Reservoir.
From there a flat, easy ride back to Radcliffe. And a Heron at Coney Green.
6 or 7 miles fairly flat.

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Thursday 17th July 2014.

It was already warm at eight-thirty for a ride-around Radcliffe & Bury. Everything green at Warth and a watch is being kept for a wild plant thought to be extinct – Agrostemma Githago – the Corn-Cockle. It’s poisonous with highly toxic sap…but at least it’s a native (oopart?) plant.

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Tuesday 15th July 2014.

No ride out yesterday as working. So today an easy few miles done on the bike locally. 1970′s ? oopart on two wheels brought back to life yesterday! With 27 inch wheels to contend with (8mm axle on the front) it’s not so much the repairs as the sourcing!
(See Bike Repairs Page)

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Sunday 13th July 2014.

A quick ride to Radcliffe and back between showers this morning. Been keeping an eye out for young Yates from Bury in Le Tour. He was upfront yesterday.
They should put Radcliffe New Road, Ainsworh Road and Bury and Bolton Road uphills in Le Tour – that would sort Le Men from Le Boys!

Ed’s been going along The Manchester, Bolton and Bury Canal to Little Lever, then down to the Manchester Arm to the Prestolee Road oopart (a nightmare on two wheels let alone one!) then to Ringley Road and then back down by Wood Street to Ringley Road Station and the Nature Trail back to Radcliffe. Along the old Manchester Arm it is, being summer, well overgrown, but still a good all-round ride with all sorts of road and track surfaces. Prestolee Road(s) shove two nasty hills into the ride too.

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Friday 11th July 2014.

A fine sunny morning over the local ooparts. Rather than just roads, and in the spirit of Le Tour, a good few cobbles were ridden today.
From the neat and fairly tidy Wellington Street Viaduct the downhill path to Wellington Street, and then Hinds Lane, was taken. This is cobbled for the first 200 yards or so.
The Giant Hogweeds, at the start of this path, have been trashed and it’s okay for bikers and walkers. Along Hinds Lane, around the scaffolded bridge (near the old Benny’s/Farmers Arms oopart) are more original cobbles.
Riding over these isn’t too bad – just make sure nothing falls off your bike if it’s an oopart like mine! Shortly the Tow-Path is smooth tarmac, and apart from a few cobbles below two other bridges, an easy ride back into Radcliffe.
Ainsworth Road to Town Hall, left to Bury Road and to Manchester Road, around Manchester Old Road to the cycle-route, down to Hinds Lane and to Coney Green, back up Banana Walk – a good 7 mile circuit on my clock.

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Thursday 10th July 2014.

Sunny and warm this morning for a bike-ride around Radcliffe and Bury. Yesterday, Le Tour was a damp and dismal plod in rain and over nasty cobbled surfaces that caused many a crash. Luckily not too many serious injuries but Froome had to pack it in.
For a hundred yards, this morning, I went over a rough part cobbled surface, but I have the time to dodge the really bad bits as slow as I like. Le Tour riders were flying along at about 30 mph!

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Wednesday 9th July 2014.

A dry run but everywhere was wet after night rain. Through Radcliffe and up New Road to Whitefield.
Then down the long, easy downhill Manchester Road toward Bury.
Go early and its fairly quiet traffic-wise. From the Bury Road junction up to the railway viaduct and then onto Bury & Bolton Road to come back down Grindsbrook and home. A good ride this morning and 7.78 on the clock, which was re-calibrated last night. It took five minutes under the hour including photo-stops.

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Tuesday 8th July 2014.

Watched Le Tourquet to Lille of Le Tour during the rain here and noticed that at times the riders reach 40 mph on the flat! So tonight, it was still a bit wet, I got the bike out (mine was built by Sherman!) and shoved it into high gear along the fairly flat Bury Road. Pedalling like mad I reached 27! Then slowed down for the left turn at Withins to get onto the canal for an easy ride back.
When back my widget said 5.09 miles!
I put me glasses on and I was clocking kilometres!
But hey ho, a gentle ride back along the Manchester, Bolton and Bury oopart.

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Monday 7th July 2014.

A ride, last night, along the Radcliffe Nature Trail (access near Asda’s – up the zig-zag slope and across the old iron railway bridge) to Prestwich and a bit further. Along the way took a look at the old Manchester, Bolton and Bury Canal aqueduct oopart, (near the multi-arched railway viaduct) which at one time carried the Manchester arm of the canal over the River Irwell at Prestwich. The viaduct (railway) is easy to see, but the nearby, much smaller aqueduct, is well overgrown with weeds and trees and full access is blocked (safety!) by large stones – but you can get close enough, on top, for a pic or two. (Within it was a mega Hogweed! Story @ ‘Hogweed Heaven’, Condorosa)
After the aqueduct, over a blue bridge and on to Agecroft Road – left and back onto the Nature Trail a hundred yards further for the return (to Radcliffe) ride. With a mile or two to get to the Nature Trail a good twelve mile bike-ride. (Clocked by GPS)

Warm, this morning, for a local ride, into Radcliffe then the usual Bury Road, Manchester Road, Wellington St. viaduct, and return along Bury & Bolton Road to Grindsbrook and home. About 6 miles on the bike-clock.
Good weather for bikes and ooparts with Le Tour on TV!

Noticed that the bottom-bracket was ‘binding’ a bit yet the cranks loose. Stripped it and the bearing cages had disintegrated! Some of the (hard steel?) bearings were square!
New, loose bearings, well greased, put in and the bracket re-assembled and gently tightened. The ride to Prestwich, last night, ‘run it in’ and the BB is nice and easy this morning. Each bearing cage held about seven ball-bearings yet, fitted loose, you need twelve per side. Why skimp? The old way is oft the best!

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Saturday 5th July 2014.

ju17An early ride around a dull and deserted Radcliffe this morning and then back to watch nearly 200 cyclists having a ride around Yorkshire.
The weather improved and it was a great Stage One except for the crash, almost at the finish, involving Mark Cavendish.
The crowds were awesome!

Stage Two, tomorrow, goes over Holme Moss. Years ago so did I. It’s a steep one! Let’s hope weather holds.

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