Saturday, 23 October 2010
Friday, 22 October 2010
Thursday, 21 October 2010
Wednesday, 20 October 2010
Whytie and I have been on an adventure to Cordoba in the southern Spanish mountains. I was invited to the Joy-Riders villa to help on their first ever Just-for-Girls Week.
I didn't know what to expect; so often girls-only events are created on the assumption that we are all beginners. The week was advertised as for intermediate to experienced riders and on the first day skills say I could see why. We were taken in an uplift to the top of a mountain and spent the whole day on one descent sessioning tricky sections. Whytie and I were there to demonstrate drop-offs, rock gardens, switchbacks, line picking, rocky descents and technical climbing. I was also there to spot the girls in case they fell off, which they sometimes did. But their pluckyness amazedJoy-Rider's regular guides, Mark and Pete "We've never had a group of blokes as brave as this, if they're scared they normally just walk it."
But with the encouragement of a group of friendly girls and sheer determination, each rider insisted on repeatedly trying things until they had mastered it. Combined with a skills session in the garden on "rest day" that included wheelies, track stands and bunny hops, the new techniques were put to the test on a variety of full-day mountain rides.
The 6 girls formed a tight bond and their banter was relentless, all day, every day. The lucky girls received an AnaNichoola goodie bag, filled with MuleBars and a Joy-Riders t-shirt, and got to spend the evenings on the roof-top hot tub with free beer!
I was massively impressed with the girls and am grateful for the opportunity to ride with them and also to ride my lovely bicycle on terrain that seems a million miles away from Surrey.