I chose the ‘Big Macc Ramble’ as a first outing for my ‘new’ mountain bike, Stumpy (pictured above), acquired a month ago on the August Bank Holiday weekend. It’s a route that I’ve done many times, although not so often in recent years. It has one or two vaguely technical descents that should have brought the best out of the full suspension and left me with a good feeling about the new acquisition.
But Stumpy didn’t play ball. After 5km of steepish ascent the bike got fed up with its new owner. The chain broke. I should have known how to mend it, and I probably have a suitable tool, but it’s a first for me to have a chain failure – in all its thousands of miles the Trail Breaker’s chain has never broken. Stumpy’s chain was exceedingly oily, so I cut my losses and free wheeled back down the hill to Trentabank.
So my first trip on Stumpy was a mere 10km, with 300 metres of ascent, in an hour and twenty minutes.
My confidence is dented, especially as the disc brakes were squealing like a demented batchelor, so I’m getting it serviced before venturing out again.
On the positive side, some steep steps encountered on the free wheel descent would have been a serious challenge for me on the old steel bike, but Stumpy took them in his stride.
Here’s Stumpy, shortly before the hill that broke him.