As daylight returned, I felt a bit depressed. There was no wind and I seemed to be riding rather sluggishly. I told the team that I wasn't sure whether I wanted to continue, as there was still over 400 miles to go.
Their reaction was, obviously, to shake me out of that idea. I agreed that improving my 24 hour record was now impossible, and so I should stop soon for a wash, clothes change and massage.
I stopped for the wash just short of Kendal, at about 7:15 am. After being revitalised, I set off again - this time on Tim's tricycle, with a wider range of gears (my machine had a bottom gear of 58").
Through Kendal, and onto Shap Fell, I completed 428 miles in the 24 hours. I used the low range of gears, to allow a fairly relaxed climb of this notorious hill. The weather was, unusually, quite pleasant at the top. I took a feed within yards of the summit, and was just finishing the sandwich when the inner ring sheared off the chainset. How awkward!
After a brief delay, when we worked out what had happened, I was reunited with the trike which I had discarded less than an hour earlier. I set off towards Penrith, wondering what the team would do with the disabled machine.
As it turned out, the decision was made to buy a new chainset. The new arrivals set off for a bike-shop in Carlisle, while Audrey and John followed me (just for a change!). At this point, Pat and Tim returned home, likely to be a bit late for work!
As I approached Carlisle, the weather deteriorated. I experienced heavy rain for about an hour, which included about 10 miles on the A74. The A74 is the main road for traffic leaving the M6, travelling towards Glasgow. It is therefore very busy, and currently there are extensive roadworks (including contraflows). This, in heavy rain and with an unhelpful wind, was not pleasant. 500 miles passed in 28hr 20mins.
At Beattock, I left the A74 and turned towards Edinburgh. I swapped back to Tim's trike, and bounded up the Devil's Beef Tub climb in 16th gear!
Once at the top, though, my enthusiasm was dampened as the descent was accompanied by another heavy rainstorm which flooded the road. Fortunately, this didn't last long, and sunshine had returned as I approached Edinburgh. I began to fall asleep again, so snatched another 10 minutes rest.
Along this stretch, I was musing on the job ahead. I was fairly relaxed, and decided that I would deal with the Grampians after a proper night's sleep. "Yes, that sounds like the best idea, as I've already covered quite a lot of ground." Then, of course, it hit me. I couldn't do that - the whole point is not to stop. This shook me up a bit!
I hit the Edinburgh ringroad at 4:30pm, and it was busy. After a high speed feed, I negotiated several marshalled roundabouts to join the A90 to the Forth Road Bridge.
After crossing the bridge, I picked up a large stone in one of my rear tyres, so stopped for a wheel change. This proved more traumatic than expected, as we couldn't get the wheel off. However, after no more than 5 minutes, I was on my way again.
The road to Cowdenbeath was a bit of a struggle, not helped by the return of the rain, and the road having been resurfaced & chipped earlier that day. I stopped briefly at Crossgates, confused by a sign saying to turn left for Cowdenbeath. However, that was for heavy traffic, and I carried straight on in the drizzle. Cowdenbeath is probably quite pleasant without overcast skies and enormous puddles.
After another brief check on the map, we left a deserted Kinross behind and began descending Glen Farg towards Perth. This stretch of road was probably last resurfaced before it was replaced by the M90. It is now in a disgraceful state, and even though largely downhill, it was highly unpleasant on a tricycle. Finding a smooth line for three wheels was impossible.
After the sharp climb from the Bridge of Earn, I arrived at Perth, having passed the 600 mile mark in 34hr 50mins, 1hr 40mins behind schedule.
Some months before, John Woodburn had quoted to me that "Any fool can get to Perth". Rather harsh, I thought, but at least I'd passed that test.
The next target was the summit of the Pass of Drumochter, 50 miles ahead. First, though, I had to negotiate a rough stretch of A9 to Dunkeld. Once that was over, I stopped for lights and extra clothes.