I awoke this Morning before daylight to a fresh dusting of Snow on all the vehicles, the UK Winter Weather certainly was not going to make the festive 500 any easier for me. I wanted to make an early start to give me more daylight time to rack up a few extra miles today and hopefully finish the festive 500 challenge one day early, I really did not want to have to get up tomorrow to chase the remaining distance required to complete it.
A cooked Breakfast and a hot mug of Tea got me off to a decent start then the deliberation over what layers to put on for a bigger day in the Saddle. As well as some Snow and Rain showers I would also have to again do battle with a very strong Wind.
I set off along the Newtownards road, through Dundonald Village and out the main road to Comber then keeping on the main road ascended up over numerous small hills to Lisbane. The local Petrol station was open so I stopped for a Star Bar to keep the energy levels topped up and also bought a Mars bar and put it in the pocket for a little treat later on.
Leaving Lisbane and on through Balloo and then Killyleagh passing Delamont and onwards to Downpatrick the wind picking up all the time making it hard going. From Downpatrick it was on to Ballynahinch with the Snow that previously was confined to the fields and hedgerows was now covering part of the road too.
Leaving Ballynahinch I opted to stay on the busy main road all the way to Temple crossroads before swinging right at the roundabout for a nice wind assisted spin down in to Saintfield and onwards to Comber. A gentle spin up the Greenway saw me back in Dundonald but I still needed another 14 miles so it was down in to Belfast through Ormeau Park, back up the embankment across the short strand round by the SSE arena over Dee Street Bridge and back home via the Greenway to successfully conclude the festive 500 challenge one day early.
Time now to relax. Rest. Recover.
Below is a very short video I made summarising my festive 500 challenge.