Flint Mapping (Just For Cyclists)

Yes, Flint Mapping, not Flint Knapping.

It occurred to me today, riding in the territory south-east of Reading, that even during ‘puncture season’, when there’s lots of washed-down debris on the roads, I’ll rarely get a flat if I stick to the roads south of the Thames.

Climb north on the other hand and the phrase ‘puncture season’ all too readily comes to life, and more often than not it will be a shard of flint doing the damage.

With a realization that just serves to emphasise how slow on the uptake I can be, north of the Thames, around here, you’re heading into chalk hills – and with chalk comes flint. Simple, blindingly obvious, and I’ve never thought of it before.

That did make me wonder whether it would be possible to get a statistically significant number of cyclists to report on when they puncture and where, and to map that against the geology of the underlying land. That might prove very interesting – and possibly useful too. Correlating that data with the tyres are being used would also be helpful, I’m sure there are any number of other variables that could be usefully fed in to the data set too.

Now, all we need is a network of cyclists, a statistician and a programmer …