I'm filled with excitement and fear... and turkey and cheese.
And wine. Mostly wine.
But at least the four-day trip will be a kick start to the New Year.
Three January days in the saddle cycling up some of our country's most challenging hills. That's a resolution in itself.
You'll freeze, said Jane.
You're joking, said Dad.
Can't fucking wait, said Dan.
My thoughts lie somewhere in between the three... but I'm gripping Dan's enthusiasm with both gloved hands as if hurtling down Friston's steepest slope on an icy morning... with one eye shut.
On New Year's eve, by way of preparation, we got up at seven and went for a cloudy dawn ride over the Downs, to Butt's Brow and back along some fabulous single track. A small loop I was doing with both eyes shut in the summer.
It hurt - a lot.
Conditions were perfect; the patchy frost hardening the turf to cheat winter out of the year's last muddy morning. Even the irksome tree roots called a truce and let us through.
I wish my physical condition had allowed me to appreciate it more fully.
The last three days have been beautiful up here, said my friend.
It's a shame today is so dull.
I thought, you've been up here for three days in a row?!
Only one of us may return from the Pennines.
Bike Club news:
- Two new members: Dave and Phil.
- Two new bikes: Bought from the tip for two pounds each... with the aim of fixing up and reselling. May be highly optimistic but will give us something to work on, I figured.
- One new frame: Also from the tip - cost £6... reason, not sure. Impulse?
- See link left for news on Trike to Bike challenge... the Trike has arrived and will also be preened at tonight's meeting for first challenge resell.