Holey Smoke

It will come as no surprise, but this is the worst month ever for potholes. A staggering 2,610 road hazards were reported on the CTC’s www.FillThatHole.org.uk website in January, compared to 699 rim wreckers last year, and the month isn’t even over yet!

Yes, we all know it snowed more than usual this winter, but I can’t remember the roads being in such a bad state in all my three and a half decades of bike riding. The problem was that the overall condition of the UK’s tarmac was already pretty shoddy, and the big freeze was just enough to finish it off.

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It makes the CTC’s site invaluable, and if you haven’t already taken the plunge, give it a try.

As the CTC says: “You spot it, you log it, they sort it.” The site has been a phenomenal success, with a further 40 holes reported in the time it has taken to compose this column, and the grand total now stands at 26,726.

With the CTC quoting one pothole every 11 metres, we’re all going to have to keep our wits about us in the coming months. Take a tip from the editor and watch it on the descents, particularly if there’s a bend or two and you can’t see too far ahead.

There wasn’t a gaping chasm at the bottom of that hill last week, but there sure was come Saturday.

Robert Garbutt is editor of Cycling Weekly

Cycling Weekly January 28 issue: Contents list>>