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.

June 30, 2018

Lovely, Spectacular...

This year started out cold and wet and completely miserable, but now it's turned into one of the most spectacular summers I've witnessed in Wales. I'm having some fantastic rides... and YES!, I'm getting into it!

Peeking across Pontsticill Reservoir on a late May afternoon

Struggling with time...

It's Tuesday; I should be out cycling with the Kingfishers today, but it's raining and I'm a few days behind getting this post together. I'm feeling rather reflective as well, so it's a good time to write.

I'm starting off this issue with three big features. First, I have a report on a wonderful ride I made to Ogmore-by-the-Sea at the end of last month. Next, I've got the second half of my super-intense ride to Grosmont & Skinfrith castles back in April. I then follow that with my first instalment on the Taff Trail; Brecon to Pontsticill. And just to cap off my features this month, I put together the full set of images from Ogmore Castle in my Gallery.

I've got a couple of quick links to a pair of cyclists I think worthy of a read, followed by a review on the latest tech from Campagnola. Let the the opnions fly! Lastly, I've pulled one of my favourite routes out from the archive and yes, I found another sexy bike to check out.

I hope you enjoy this issue. Thanks as always for stopping by. Cheers! - cm


RIDE w/ GPS - I have been dreaming of this trip for several years. I took advantage of some spectacular weather on the late May Bank holiday to have a great cycling adventure along the Vale of Glamorgan. Check out my full-blown report at Ride with GPS: Ogmore-by-the-Sea Odyssey.

Grosmont & Skenfrith Epic pt.2

MY RIDES - This ride has turned into a massive project for me and yet, I've still more to do! I should have the final part completed next month. Meanwhile, here's Part Two of my epic ride: Grosmont & Skenfrith Epic pt.2.

Brecon to Pontsticill

MY RIDES - It's been a tough 'ole slog to get this thing put together... and this is just the first part! I've been working on this for nealy six months, but I feel that now I've got a sold working model. Take a look at my first version of this route descriptioon and tell me what you think. Taff Trail - Brecon to Pontsticill

Cardiff Bay

GALLERY - Sometimes ya just run across something exceptional. So it was on this lovely June day as I was passing through Cardiff on a training ride. I found that I had to slow down to shoot a few snaps. Whaddya thunk?: Cardiff Bay.

Ogmore Castle

GALLERY - I put the full set of images I shot whilst wandering about the castle on my Ogmore-by-the-Sea Odyssey. Plus, I've added a new sub-section to my Gallery just for castles! Check out: Ogmore Castle.

In the News

Mpora: Nigel Sylvester
I don't normally read much about BMX bikes. However, I stumbled across this guy and I just dig his whole approach. In fact, I've never heard of a "professional cyclist" who is not competing in some form? Check out some great videos showcasing Nigel's philosphy along with some pretty sick bike moves. How does he do it? I dunno, but it is awesome!

Jonas Deichmann: Living a meanigful life...
I just discovered this cat a few days ago and if you're interested in long distance cycling, you need to check this guy out. He takes solo rides to an entirely different level. Currently, he holds the world record for cycling across Eurasia and plans to attempt a Panamerica solo record. His web site has great stories and excellent photograpy. Plus, I really dig his attitude on life.

Bikesoup: Road Disc Brakes
Debate is very hot regarding disc brakes on road bikes. Personally, I think they are "over-tech" with the exception of use on mountain bikes. This detailed article by a wheel builder sums up the issue(s) better than any I've read and I think he's spot on. Take a few minutes to give this one a gander and tell me: "what do you think?"

Out From the Archive

Cordell Country Heritage Ride
2013 - I was given the novel "Rape of the Fair Country" by my wife when I first moved to Wales and it had a profound affect on me. I created this circular route as part of my Wales Heritage Series for Sustrans back in 2013. Join me on a scenic and poignant ride through the South East Valleys.

Sexy Bike Alert!

Salsa: Marrakesh Deore Drop Bar
With the growing popularity of "gravel riding" bikes, Salsa offers a unique combination of gravel and touring componentry. I love the 9-speed Deore drive train, Cowchipper handlebars, and Brooks saddle. I think it's a great looking set up. Also they have a version with straight handle bars... pretty interesting stuff. Take a look and tell me what you think.

>> Coming next issue; 01 Aug. 2018

  • Rides: Caldicot to Oakdale
  • Rides: Llangorse Lake
  • Rides: Twin Peaks - The Bwlch & Rhigos
  • Charts: Goals; How am I doing?
  • Gear: TRP Brake Levers Review
  • Gallery: Man Engine
  • Gallery: Shirenewton to Usk