Sunday, 28 July 2013

Mott Street

Monday the 8th July started early; it was 6.30am when I pulled out of the car park in fact as I wanted to get Mott Street and Whiteleaf ridden and be back on the road heading home before lunchtime. This was partly because I was keen to escape the South East (I used to live there and now greatly prefer the less crowded and generally more chilled out South West) and partly to avoid cooking in the hot weather which had been forecast for later in the day. After suffering in the heat on the relatively short climb of Swains Lane (and an admittedly very long drive in a hot car) I had spent most of the night that followed trying to cool down.

None of the South Eastern climbs are too far from signs of urban sprawl

My early start meant that the short drive to Mott Street from my overnight stop was nice and cool and by 7.15, after parking up and setting up the bike, I was rolling along to the start of the climb in the sort of conditions I like. Getting out of bed at a stupid time in the morning had been worth it. The only real problem I faced was that the sun was still quite low in the sky and I had trouble seeing where I was going on a couple of the corners.

Mott Street is an odd little climb. It never gets too steep and the steepest section is actually quite short. The road to start with is pretty flat and it is only after it has been gradually ramping up in gradient that the steepest section of the road homes into view. Even then the road never hits more than a 12% gradient and because of the gentle ramp up in steepness I was able to keep the bike in a fairly high gear (well for me anyway) for most of the climb. I only changed down once I was on the 12% section and by the time I had finished clattering about with my gears it was time to change back up again for the final, less steep, section of the climb. In fact, I was a bit surprised to have the climb over and done with so quickly. It all seemed to be a bit of an anti climax but then it did give me plenty of time to get across to the climb at Whiteleaf.


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