The Push Hog Legacy: Stage 2 – The Rain Man

On Sunday 29th July I decided to take advantage of the fine recent weather and head out towards South Newbald to tackle one of my favourite training hills, Trundlegate.

The ride began well, climbing up Newbald Hill on Beverley Westwood before heading toward North Newbald via Walkington Heads & Beverley Road. However what seemed like a run of the mill ride would alter significantly when I inadvertently rode into the mother of all rain storms.

As I approached the junction with Wold Road the sky became dark, very dark, and before I knew it the heavens opened and drenched me from top to bottom. To make matters worse the rain was accompanied by a strong head wind and to add to my misery I was completely unprepared, so dressed in just a pair of bib shorts and a jersey I rode very slowly hoping the rain would stop.

After five minutes of rain, the road to North Newbald had become more like a river, making negotiating corners and descents treacherous, I seriously wanted to turn back, but I knew the wind was blowing the rain in that direction, so I struggled on until the rain abruptly stopped as I approached Mount Pleasant Drop.

Although the rain had stopped, the wind remained, but as I descended this did me a favour as by the time I reached the bottom of hill my clothing had almost entirely dried out, so the ride was back on.

Riding into North Newbald I had the bit between my teeth and before long I reached the base of Trundlegate. Usually, as regular readers will testify, I struggle with this particular hill which reaches 14% in places, but today was different. Instead of jamming my trusty stead into first gear and trudging up the opening steep section, I gave it some beans and by the time I reached Highfield at the base of the climb I was travelling over 12mph – Trust me on this one, that is very fast for me at this stage!

To my own *and my legs* astonishment I kept up this momentum, huffing and puffing along the way, before gradually slowing half way up the ramp. But I wasn’t about to let this go quite yet, so out of the saddle and changing up a gear I injected some more impetus and before long I rounded the shallow left hand turn and the gradient began to drop.

Knowing full well that this had been my best ascent of Trundlegate so far, I needed to finish the climb to improve my Strava time, so although my lungs and legs were burning I struggled on to the top of the climb as the road meets Whin Lane, Phew!

It wouldn’t be until I got home that I checked my Strava time and I wasn’t disappointed having finished the climb in 5 minutes 45 seconds, a full 1 minute 19 seconds faster than my previous effort.


Having reached the top of Trundlegate the climb doesn’t stop just yet, so gathering myself and having a good sup of my drink, I peddled off to reach the end of Whin Lane, a road which undulates before a final shallow climb which ends at the junction with Burgate Hill. Checking Strava I once again broke my previous best, this time achieving 12 minutes 51 seconds, a good 2 minutes 13 seconds faster than my previous best.


The way home took me across Burgate to Littlewood Road, a narrow country lane which runs up, but mostly down towards the village of Walkington, from where I finished by eventful ride by crossing the Westwood back into Beverley. An eventful ride and an experience if nothing else!



Total Distance Covered: 36 miles

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2 Responses to The Push Hog Legacy: Stage 2 – The Rain Man

  1. Adrian says:

    Wouldnt life be so much simpler without Strava? Then again when I’m coming up to a segment & the wind’s behind me the excitement you feel thinking you may take a second or two off your best is childishly thrilling.

    • I’m sure it’s just a fad and something new will come along next year, but at the moment Strava is a great motivator when on my bike, however it can be the opposite when off it and I see my actual times! Thanks for your comment, Paul.

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