Afan Valley 27/02/2009
Caught the 10.45 am train from Paddington to port Talbot the journey was straight through and about 3 hours. I updated my position and tracked the journey on google latitude, but my phone signal ran out in the taxi to the LA outdoor centre. I was the first to arrive so dumped my kit and went for a run. I did about 9 miles. Out was gradually up hill along a cycle track then, off road and up into the tree line of a forest. Back was very fast as the last 2.5 miles was downhill. I had a nice shower and a kip then and Roger was the first to arrive, so we went to the watering hole the bar on sight and we got some nice beer stroganoff and we got two drinks with our meals. We were sharing the site with a stag weekend. Then Darren arrived with Nik and Jackie and Simon and Lydia and folks arrived gradually with Steve and the train crew last to arrive at about 11.30 PM. The bar closed about 12.00 PM and we didn't have beer so we watched Halloween h2o in the boys chalet then I stayed up and watched Brian Cox on fusion till 2 am.
Up for breakfast at 8.30 am and got a lift with nick to the Afar argoed cycle centre. I hired a bike for 30 quid which was good but was a hardtail. In fact it had never been ridden before. The others hired their bikes and we set off up the hill, I led a charge to the top up the steepest most direct route I could find, and then when I had got to the top I headed down again, Initially I drove behind Nik King and Lydia, but I was probably going faster than I could safely manage on a strange bike and being out of practice on a bike. It was very good fun though we did the Y Wall red route in the morning and after a break for lunch or an ice cream in my case, we did and orange route in the afternoon, though people were suffering a bit by then, we still got round well. In the afternoon I had a role as backmarker which was ok by me as I could go at a comfortable pace without risk of injury. We had a little wait for nick to get back with his group then it was off to the chalets and myself and Sandy went for a run, we couldn't convince Jackie to join us, we Did 5 miles in quite a fast time, there was certainly a fast run in. We had to hurry folks up then by imposing the 2 song rule on the shower. We got to the watering hole and found we had to wait for our curry till after the rugby had finished. We then played some pool and myself and Steve stayed on the table for a few games. Back then to one of the chalets and we played a game were me, Jackie and David were shaved, fed yoghurt and frosties and had our hair styled by Sarah, Jacqui and Nik. Myself and Sarah were the winners. We played a game with balloons tied to our legs and then we were about done. I read my book till about 2 am
Up again for breakfast at 8.30 am. After breakfast those of us that didn't have our bikes with us went for a nice walk with the guy who ran the place. There was some good uphills and a bit of scrambling and his dogs were very amusing fetching sticks and stuff thrown into the reservoir. We also saw some folks on trail bikes bombing up a hill, there were a good few folks along on the walk. Adam, Marc, Steve, Sarah, Jackie, Nik, Georgina, Jacqui, David. We had a good long walk then Jacqui gave me a lift to the recommended restaurant, but it wasn't so hot so myself Adam and Marc found the local wetherspoons pub and enjoyed a roast. James joined us as we were leaving and we caught a very full 16.48 to Paddington.