WELCOME! I've been cycling through the Southeast Valleys of Wales since 2010 and I can't say (or show) enough about the place. I just love it. So if you've got the interest and would like to spend some time... sit back and let me show you some of the fabulous places I've discovered.

Wednesday, 14 February 2018

Here We Go! No... Hold on a minute, it's snowing again.

It snowed. It rained. It snowed again. Then it was cold as bejezus and froze everything making January 2018 a particularly difficult month for cycling.

I spent the better part of the month looking out the window and refreshing the Met Office Weather website because if nothing else... the weather is damn "changeable" in Wales.

Needless to say, I didn't reach ANY of my goals for the month. What a way to start the year, eh? I hate chasing numbers (I really do...) but I like making them. So to appease my soul for not reaching those arbitrary numbers I set out for myself in 2017; I'm going to begin this issue with a feature showcasing what I did achieve last year.

I follow that up with a look into an ongoing project I've given myself on the Taff Trail. It's kinda daunting, but exciting. Read my overview as I begin a four part series.

Then to supplement all you gear heads out there, I've got a couple of articles for you to read whilst sitting around: shocking talk about the triple crank and for the tech heads, an excellent write-up on gear ratios.

Lastly, I've found a cool bike to warm your heart this snowy winter. Be sure to check out my Sexy Bike Alert. I hope you enjoy!

The Snow Issue

2017 Achievements
I took advantage of the rough weather and time off the bike during January to make a thorough assessment of my riding during 2017. At first, I beat myself up for not reaching my goals, but what I later discovered; is that I shouldn't get caught up with the numbers. Take a look and tell me what you think of my year in: "2017 Achievements".

Taff Trail: Project Overview
It's the most well-known walking and cycling path in South East Wales. Ask most anyone around here and they know of it... many have walked or cycled parts of it. Some may have covered the entire 55 miles. Now I've got a crazy notion along with some big ideas on documenting the entire route. Take a look at my work on: "The Taff Trail".

Death of the 3x Crank?
It's been around for more than 50 years, now there's rumbling in the woods about it's demise. Could this really be the end of a trusted component? Read what our resident "retro-grouch" thinks about this topic in: "Death of the 3x Crank".

© CyclingAbout 2018. All rights reserved.
Gear Ratios
I've been reading this guys website for years and for good reason too; he knows his shit. It's perhaps my number one go-to source for product reviews and cycle touring information. Alee is the man. Read this excellent explanation of everything you need to know about bicycle gearing in his appropriately named feature: "Gear Ratios".

Llangynidr Commons
It's been a difficult couple of months to get out on the bike, but earlier this February I made a wonderful ride up to the Brecon Beacons. It's hard to believe this place is just 15 miles above our home. Check out my report at the Ride with GPS website: "Llangynidr Commons".

Out From the Archive

Yn Uchel Uwchben y Cymoedd; Part 1

Back in 2016 I set out to explore the Rhondda Valleys and what a treat it turned out to be. I can't wait to go back. Relive my two day journey exploring the varied landscapes of the Rhondda Valleys.

Yn Uchel Uwchben y Cymoedd; Part 2

Big mountains, sprawling vistas, rolling countrysides... the hits just kept coming. Join me for Part 2 of my epic journey exploring the gorgeous Rhondda Valleys.

Sexy Bike Alert!

Bianchi L'Eroica - Campagnolo 10sp

Hands-down this is my choice for the most beautiful bike of 2018. I'm old-school all the way yet this gem marries the best of both the past and the present. It rocks.

>> Coming next issue; March 15th 2018

  • Part Two on my Taff Trail Project
  • New Reads on the Internet
  • New Gallery in Bike Wales
  • Missed Hits from 2017
  • Another Sexy Bike Alert

  • Thanks for stopping by... Seeya down the road. Cheers! cm

    Monday, 15 January 2018

    VOLUME 02 ISSUE 01
    New Year & New Plan

    I'm hoping for a bigger & better year of cycling in 2018. In my first issue this year I've laid out a number of distinct goals, so sit back and hang on!

    You may have read that I failed to reach any of my goals for last year and despite having some pretty significant numbers (see: 2017 Yearly Totals), I'm upping the ante with a new set of goals which are bigger and bolder!

    I've also got this new blog structure to support. You may have noticed that I've taken on the role of publisher as well as author and this is going to be a tricky devil to maintain. Hopefully, you'll enjoy reading some of the articles I uncover.

    The BIG Issue

    A New Hope
    With respects to Star Wars, I too have taken on a new approach to my blog. Back in the day when websites were just beginning, everyone was trying to be a "portal". Well, here I am 20 years later and trying to do the same thing. See what you think of my ideas in "A New Hope".

    Goals for 2018
    It's a challenge to keep yourself challenged. Fortunately, I love cycling in this lovely little country and there's plenty to explore. Read about some of the interesting places I want to visit as well as some of the numbers I'll be chasing throughout the year in "Goals for 2018".

    Grwyne Fawr Reservoir
    I made a pledge to write up all the great rides for which I failed to report in 2017. And now it's happening. You can read my first "catch up" instalment about a great little adventure I shared with my pal Deano back in October of 2017 in : "Grwyne Fawr Reservoir".

    Rhymney Meadows
    Sometime in 2013/14 the online photo editing website I was using "lost" a number of my photos. I've been wanting to restore/rebuild many of these older blog posts dating from that era. Digging through thousands of images across multiple systems has been tough! But, I'm getting there slowly. Here's a little peek: "Rhymney Meadows".

    Cajamarca to Guamo
    I've been catching up with Curtis & Jenny Shaw as they continue their cycle journey through Central & South America. Two crazy kids having crazy, wonderful adventures. Warning! It's addictive reading! Check out their latest exploits: "Cajamarca to Guamo".

    Thanks for stopping by. I'll see ya down the road.

    Cheers! ~ cm

    Sunday, 31 December 2017

    VOLUME 01 ISSUE 09
    Platitudes and Altitudes

    2017 was an outstanding year for me and cycling in Wales. In my last issue for 2017 I'll be highlighting a selection of events outside the obvious that characterised and helped shape this unique year.

    I cycled on 122 individual days and covered almost 8,000 miles, so it's pretty easy to simply highlight some of the wonderful rides I made. Yet, little things like writing for a different website, or breaking my camera, and even trying out new tyres had surprising effects on my year and shaped the way I rode.

    Some of the contributing factors were planned and some were shockingly unplanned. Sometimes just getting off the bike and walking made the ride unique. So I hope you enjoy reading about these little details which had a big impact on my year in 2017.

    Featured Platitudes

    A Camera for a Cyclist
    In November I fell off my bike and broke my "good" camera. Now I've resorted to using a smartphone for documenting my rides. Read about the features I'm interested in along with some of the cameras I'm considering for a replacement in my ridiculously detailed article; "A Camera for a Cyclist".
    Bike & Hike
    Despite my love for seeing the world by cycle, there are many interesting places to see that one can only reach on foot, ie. the top of mountains! Read about four exciting adventures I had in 2017 using this latest approach to cycling and exploring this fabulous little country in; "Bike & Hike".
    Ride w/GPS - Ride Reports
    Ride with GPS introduced a new feature this past spring which threw me for a loop. Suddenly they were offering a far more attractive blog component to their website - one that put this old site to shame! Take a look at some of the best cycling reports on the Internet at; "Ride w/GPS - Ride Reports".
    Writing About the Past
    I've no shortage of content. My main problem is taking the time to write. I ride so much and take so many photos that my material collects faster than I can properly report about it. Check out my thoughts on 2017 as well as what plans I have for the future in; "Writing About the Past".
    2017 Yearly Totals
    I didn't reach my goals for 2017, but a close inspection of my numbers yields some interesting and rather surprising results. You can sort through all the gory details in the "Charts" section of my blog or skip to my yearly review in; "2017 Yearly Totals".

    Thanks Wales for being so lovely and thank you, dear reader, for stopping by...
    seeya down the road.

    Cheers! ~ cm