Introduction

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.

Never-ending Redesign


In January I began working behind the scenes of this website/blog to standardise some of the elements you see across each section.

To give you a quick synopsis; this website is in fact composed of seven (yes, seven!) separate blogs that are interconnected via the navbar. Home, My Rides, Routes, Gallery, Charts, Gear, and About are each separate blogs.

Why is that you may ask? Well, when I started my blog back in 2008 things were pretty simple. There were very few FREE options available, but as usual Google was way ahead of the game. However, as advanced as their ideas were; you were still very limited with what you could do.

As time progressed, I began developing reoccurring themes that felt as if they deserved their own space. Then Blogger grew and eventually I was able to segregate my features into distinct departments. And voilĂ !... this is what you see today.



What to look for...
There are some huge disadvantages to having seven separate blogs, but I'm not going to go into that just now. Today I'm going to focus on some of updates and improvements you can actually see.

◀  Bigger pages!
The overall page width has grown from 800 pixels to 1000 pixels wide. That's 20% larger and a pretty significant modification which had a ripple effect across most all of the page components. I've spent the better part of the month scrambling to get the site(s) sorted. The biggest challenge has been reworking all the banners...

Bolder banners!
Every section has it's own unique set of banners. I've shot loads of photos since I first installed the rotating banner gadget, so I thought it worthwhile to not only create a new set of images, but now there are more of them as well. Check out the modal viewer I built to showcase these babies too!  ▼

Modal Lightbox
A new tool for viewing for the images section.




Widgets, widgets, widgets!
These darn things are what really got me interested in making the pages wider. Ride with GPS has a great little widget that I've been wanting to include in my blog, but it's always been just too big. With my new page width however, the right column has also gotten wider so that it can hold the widget. Check out Recent Activities for Bike Wales shown on the right side of this page!  ►

My details now have more details!
I'm all about embedding. I especially love pulling Google sheets into my blog wherever I can. The charts section is pretty much dedicated to this feature.

Also you'll find a new mini-navbar located above Monthly Details, Calendar, and Totals. Hopefully this little detail will aid in navigating between the most pertinent tables.

And yeah, I'm going a little crazy with my Calendar view. Essentially, I just want to know how the weather is affecting my riding. Plus too, with this new chart I can track how much a ride weekly. I track it yearly, monthly and weekly now!

◀  Check out the fun in: "2018 Monthly Calendar"

 
More clickage!
You should notice too that I've got some new buttons within the sidebars on each page. These new buttons require the user to "click" on them to view an expanded list. It's a subtle change, but I wasn't completely happy with the previous buttons/tabs with mouse-over.


And lastly, you should notice popups when mousing over certain charts... little interactive bits to give you a tad more detail. WooHoo!

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