First outing of the new cross bike

Following the catastrophic crack in my frame on the Dirty Disco, and it being well out of the two year warranty, I’ve got myself a new Santa Cruz cross bike (with a lifetime frame warranty).  It arrived Saturday, and Sunday was its first trip out.  I thought a proper cross adventure was in order…

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Early morning mist at the bridge over the river at Witton-le-Wear.
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Leaving the back of Hamsterley Forest on fireroad.
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Quarry and lake above Newbiggin, Teesdale. Start of the “bad bridleway shortcut”.
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Typical terrain on the bad bridleway shortcut.
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Almost there: the road over Swinhope Head into Weardale is at the white farmhouse.
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En-route to Swinhope Head in perfect conditions.

On entering Weardale, I called into the excellent Chatterbox Cafe, then fought my way along the backroads to Frosterley in an unusual (and strengthening) easterly wind.  A call home from Stanhope fixed a lift from Frosterley for the price of a beer, meaning I could avoid (a) riding on the main road, (b) uphill, (c) into the wind.

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At Frosterley, waiting for a lift.
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Nice train on the Weardale Railway.

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A nice first ride out, with some PBs!

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