Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Snowdonia road bikers...back to black!


The hills of north Wales are alive...with the sight and sound of Wanabee Wiggos! Since the success of UK road bikers in international competition, there has been a noticeable explosion of interest in road biking which more than parallels the popularity of mountain biking in these ere parts. Driving through Snowdonia at the weekend, you cannot help noticing how busy the A5 and minor roads are with lycra clad teams and individuals belting head long through the mountain passes. I know for a fact that many road and mountain bikers are ex climbers who now just bike full time and have given up cragging altogether.

However, one thing that does perturb me about road bikers- and no, it’s not crawling through Capel Curig in a convoy behind a road bike club - it’s the frankly bizarre trend which sees road bikers geared up in all black! Twice in recent weeks I’ve come around the corner on a quiet country lane at twilight and come straight up behind a biker kitted out in black and with a tail light which was neither use nor ornament! Driving up Ogwen Valley a couple of days ago, it appeared that around 50% of road bikers were wearing black. Given that is was a grey and wet day then it goes without saying that they hardly stood out against the sombre background.

What is it about black though? Apart from the visibility element, it’s a terrible colour to wear on hot sunny days which are crying out for an all white ensemble! What exactly is wrong with Canary yellow, Lime green, vibrant orange, bright red- etc for biking apparel? Perhaps it’s not ‘cool’ in the same way as black. Not that road biking fashion could ever be considered cool. Tight Lycra and Darth Vadar helmets is such a bad look!  If you want to avoid slipping under the wheels of a timber lorry or caravan however,then personally I’d let road biking fashion go hang and go for a day-glo orange and shocking pink combo!

1 comment:

  1. well, I certainly mind being behind a trail of black zombies! If I am in Capel Curig, it means I am probably going bouldering...knowing that my 'pastime' is not inconveniencing anyone. Road cycling should be an indoor sport. With 'heads down', wired into gadgets & apps for heartbeat, elevation and calorie intake, they could be anywhere! Road cycling is the new 'golf', and the bike, accessories, apps and style nothing more than status symbols in the club. Why don't they hire a coach with blackened windows and installed with training bikes and a screen showing them the 'nature' outside and flash read-outs for info on heartbeat etc? Or better still the Sports Council could build tunnels under the hills for these trendy, sporty clones...wankers!