5 May 2014

5th May 2014

Monday 5th 45F, 7C, a heavy grey overcast, breezy, occasional misty rain. More like spitting in the wind. I left late for my walk but avoided my usual haunts because of a tractor spraying the raps between myself and my favourite woods. I was slightly too cold for bare hands but I alternated to protect my binoculars. I ought to have done something about the supplied protective caps by now. Hung them from a thin cord, I suppose. Another roundtoit to add to the untidy heap. Rain all day. Rest day.

Tuesday 6th 53F, 12C, windy, overcast. My usually solitary walk in the woods was interrupted by a forestry machine. I watched and snapped away as the driver moved a huge pile of immature trees. Then he went off into the woods to do more felling. I could then continue along the track. Saw a couple of hares. Blowing a gale now! Probably another rest day.

Wednesday 7th 51-60F, 11-15C,  overcast, raining lightly. It is supposed to clear up this afternoon. It became sunny mid morning and stayed that way. 7 miles on the Higgins. Head bearings rattling. Gear indexing all over the place.

Thursday 8th 48F, 9C, overcast, windy and wet! It is supposed to clear up later. It is odd the affect that some unlikely things have on others. The Danish countryside would not be the same if it were not for hunting. Though I may moan about the prairies of modern farming there is a lot to be thankful for. The countless woods and copses would have little value if it were not for the shooting they offer.

Denmark's heavily corrugated landscape must have been a nightmare to drain. There are remarkably few rivers or even streams to carry away the drainage from the fields. So drains must be dug to move flooding from one place to another. Prior to the modern JCB type digger it must have been backbreaking and laborious work. Beneath the topsoil, heavy clay seems to be the norm. Often with a high water table. The result has been a far more attractive landscape than it might otherwise have been.

Even the slashed hedges, which I often complain about, grow back eventually. Hedges are vital wildlife corridors and provide shelter, nesting sites, habitats, food and windbreaks. It ought to be considered a criminal act to actually remove a field hedge. Particularly one which runs alongside a road. Here, they not only provide shelter for the cyclist from the incessant wind. Hedges also stop snow drifting, reduce topsoil loss, help to kill the spread of road noise and absorb CO2 and toxins. Let's add increased privacy, greening of the built environment and traffic calming.

Torrential showers arrived at frequent intervals so I took the car to the shops. Another rest day.

Friday 9th 54F, 12C, rain and very heavy showers with occasional sunshine. Another rest day.

Saturday 10th 53F, 12C, overcast, breezy, threat of rain. My legs are aching like hell! 3.2 mile walk in two hours. Lots of hares. The forestry machine has been busy. The pile of small, felled trees is now 20' high x 30' deep x 100' long. It is interesting how the tracked vehicle protects the ground it covers. No deep ruts and the track imprints even stop water erosion on steep slopes. There is no direct path for the water to follow. It has been pouring with rain but it was still possible to make reasonable progress. Once it dries out it will make a firm, wide, flat path. It actually repairs the formerly heavily rutted tracks. My legs were fine by the time I arrived home. Lots of wild flowers and blossom at the moment.

The Higgins felt very strange at first. I was very stretched out and struggling to stay far enough back on the saddle. The trike was twitchy and I was acutely aware of the huge pedal circle of the 175mm cranks. Though I was only slightly aware of the narrower track and its effect on cornering and camber. I keep making adjustments to the gear indexing but it doesn't help much. I may be overdoing the adjustments of course. It was only when I was nearly home that I managed any serious cadence. A few cyclists out training. They all waved or nodded. Only 15 miles. Mr Higgins is 60 years old this year.

Sunday 11th 53F, 12C, windy, overcast or heavy cloud, pouring with rain all morning with only short breaks.  The forecast is no better for the rest of the day. There was a clear interval mid afternoon though still blowing very strong gusts. 8 miles on the Higgins.

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