Falmouth Wheelers
Tuesday October 25 2016 
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    Falmouth Wheelers Pathfinder on the Roseland, October 16th




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How many miles?
Oct 20, 2016, 6:42 pm

Having failed in my attempt to hand over the club biro to Mike you may have to put up with my scribbling for a little while longer. But if Bob Dylan can reap such rewards for his song writing then maybe all is not lost. There could, one day, be a no bell prize for pointless ride reports to place beside by cherished golden spoke. If only I could think of a theme for this week. Just where is the answer?

The answer to “where are we going?” was already decided by our Chairman, on Tuesday; to Shortlanesend Village Hall, to look at the new plans for the dualling of the A30 from Carland Cross to Chiverton. And there seemed to be a significant number of OGIL equally interested, as a total of 14, either heads or bikes, turned out. I have to admit that in my excitement I forgot to text TD, so, “Sorry”. The ground staff at Culdrose were freewheeling without Trevor and Raymondo, both of whom, of course were doing nothing of the sort. So a good hilly ride was needed. Fred and Bernie had the odd mumble but pretty much left the route to Simon, though maps were visible on frequent occasions. Mystic Meg put the odd oar in just to make sure we were not too far off track and we arrived at the café, now called the Penrose Kitchen, at just within the OGIL mileage limit. They genuinely seemed pleased to see us and were very accommodating with off menu orders. Toasted teacakes came with the equivalent of a WW2 monthly butter allowance and Raymondo must have thought that tomorrow had come early as a goodly portion of jam arrived with his. But no sooner had he spread the entire serving on to his teacake than Phil1 enquired as to where his jam was. The others seemed satisfied with their various orders as they scoffed quietly, until Admiral mentioned that it was his birthday on Sunday. The café echoed to the sound of “Happy Birthday, dear David”. Only I, still waiting for my eggs to appear, heard the click of the door as the other customers departed. Simon, not to be missed out, said that it was his birthday on Saturday, so a further rendition of the birthday song was called for.

After the café many decided that their interest in seeing the plans was not as great as their interest in getting back to Falmouth, so it was just few of us who cycled up into the village. The exhibition was interesting and the CC and Highways England staff were very helpful in pointing out the areas that would be of more interest to Wheelers, and in listening to our views. Though with an earliest start date of 2020 and a 4-year build time, I don’t think it will have that much of an impact on my cycling habits. No doubt Martyn will update you all at the club meeting next week. As we left the hall, cyclists from the Truro Club turned up for a look.

The route out had been via Threemilestone so it was down the cycle path into Truro that we chose to return. It was a little confusing as to who turned off where but I found myself on my own at Suicide alley so could then plod up Hangman’s Hill and Hillhead at my own pace. Just one spot of rain early in the ride but for me, an enjoyable 38 miles. Dean

Oct 17, 2016, 12:51 pm

A lot of P-words, but no not mentioning THE P-word!  What is it about Pathfinders?  They just seem to get more popular; or are we competing to see who can get the biggest turnout?  That of course is a good thing!  The Pink Ladies – Liz, Sonjia, Paula and Jo -  achieved this with a massive gathering of 35 on 34 bikes at Trelissick Gardens; for the uninitiated – there was a tandem in the mix.  The weather was kind to us and the organisation was superb – with maps of the route being handed out and everyone being kept in order.  The ladies had complete control!

Off we headed down the hill to catch the 10.20 ferry: definitely more bikes than cars!  Did anyone notice if the ferry was listing to port more than usual?  There was now the long drag from the ferry to the top of the hill; before which one or two ignored good advice and managed to skid when leaving the ferry too enthusiastically!  We regrouped at the top of the hill and then headed through Philleigh passing a popular Wheelers pub – no time to stop!  There was another regroup at Ruan Highlanes where Ian appeared out of the undergrowth or somewhere.  We drifted onwards through a network of quiet lanes – some new to many Wheelers?  Once again I must mention the good organisation of this ride in that I was pleasantly lost for a while.  Isn’t this what a Pathfinder is all about?

We soon passed through Veryan Green and between the famous Roundhouses and into Veryan for a regroup.  Still the discipline was being maintained and everyone was behaving themselves – although the potential for otherwise was there!  We were now  suitably warned about steep up and down passing Mellinsey Mill – the up proved particularly challenging due to the wet and mucky conditions.  One or two were obliged to get off due to loss of traction: or was it a case of ‘sod it, I’m not even going to try’?  More quiet lanes and then the superb coastal view were there to be seen before the descent into Portscatho and the Plume of Feathers.  In spite of the sheer size of the invasion – they coped well with food service; although it must be said that Trevor caused considerable catering mayhem when he ordered his chips and sausage – it should have been sausage and chips!  The missing banger  will I am sure enter into the realms of Wheelers’ folklore!

After this excellent and enjoyable pub stop we  headed back – by various routes it seems.  I think  it was suggested by various Pink Ladies that we ‘did our own thing’ so to speak.  Anyway we all appeared to arrive back down at the slipway roughly at the same time and waited – Sod’s Law would have predicted that the ferry would be at the other side!  We duly embarked and the ferry sailed, only to then see a few ‘stragglers’ arriving to just miss it.  At least, they just had only the short ‘grunt’ up to Trelissick afterwards.  All’s well that more or less ends well?

Again, many thanks to the Pink Ladies for such a great day out on the bikes.   So, for the organiser of the next Pathfinder  -  BEAT THAT!


To the North Country Fair - Long Ride 9 October 2016
Oct 16, 2016, 8:17 am

Robin had a Newquay plan. Amanda, Dene, Emma, Trevor 2, Jim W, Phil 4, Raymond, all on solos and us (M & M) on tandem joined him. Penryn, Truro Hill, Enys, we descended Carclew Lodge like a rolling stone to the Norway. Dividing along the A39 alley then on together up Bissoe, past Nangiles and Dangerous X where One and All filled the road ahead. Two of our advanced riders chatted with their rearguard as we crossed the A30 overbridge and one F Wheeler got ahead to the old A30 junction Straight over as if for St Agnes but then left to pass near Mt Hawke and down and down to sea level at Porthtowan to begin the full coastal roller ride, slowly up to the Victory Inn for us in our low gears.

At Seven Milestone we took the Goonbell road to kiss the east of St Agnes then climb again. I didn’t go for the little ring soon enough so we did the climb faster than usual in middle ring, standing. Robin later commented that this showed we have learned how to climb on tandem. Sorry, it’s not a performance we intend to repeat on every hill. A gravitational sling shot in the dip before Barkla Shop saw us outrun the others briefly then rapidly find our usual place for the later part of the climb up to School.

The delights of Perranporth were seen and not had, then another good climb by the golf club and we slipped left off the main road heading for Cubert, passing the sand dunes that consumed St Pirran’s oratory twice. Two more valleys to cross with low gear climbs. After Cubert a descent were we saluted Truro CC climbing towards us then a short hill into the top of Crantock and back to the main road to take the gentle climb to the roundabout. Some route hesitation there but Amanda and I were confident although I led a small group along the car-less Bank Street for the full Newquay while most took the more sensible road. Once we recombined Cake on the Corner was there on the right. We were recognised but someone was missed; now you don’t laugh so loud?

Table service and well cooked, good sized portions although some confusion about cooked items of all kinds as against breakfasts caused an extra Full English to appear then quickly disappear to the kitchen.

After this generous stop we headed off, still east, past the airfield to skirt St Columb Major then finally we turned south to rejoin the former A30 near Gnome World. Across the A30 overbridge and down beside the river Fal all headed for Ladock and the tidal limit near Tresillian. Our tandem took a brief spell on the front where the slope increases after Brighton Cross but tucked in behind again once the slope turned against us.

After Tresillian the still smooth asphalt of the new cycle path helped although regaining the carriageway near Camilla junction was a bit tricky. The usual return via Truro’s Strangways Terrace and the drag up past Kea School on the Old Coach Road was slow. The Quay Inn provided a welcome bit of refreshment for our final leg bringing it all back home up from the Carclew Lodge and through Mylor Bridge.
118km and 20.8km/h rolling average for us. Martyn

The Gridiron Ride From Lymington, cycled By The Two Dons.
Oct 14, 2016, 8:50 pm
We set off on Friday after lunch and stopped that night at a campsite near Charmouth.  We walked down into the town that evening to see what nightlife Charmouth had to offer.  There seemed to be some large people in Charmouth.  Was it the good food and beer at The George Inn causing this?  Suitably sustained we retired to the van for the night.
In the morning we travelled on to Hurst campsite near Lymington, and from there went to find the start for tomorrow’s ride = a short ride in to Lymington.  The Chequer Inn is conveniently situated about 15 minutes walk from the campsite and so more pub grub was consumed that evening, as well as a pint or two of ale.
It was an early rise on Sunday to register for the ride with a thousand other cyclists of every age, shape and size.  An 8.30 start saw us heading for Bucklers Hard on fairly level terrain.  We thought we were alone, but gradually we were overtaken by other riders - mostly young, of both sexes, fit and on lightweight bikes.  That was our excuse anyway.  The route headed north to Normansland, then Burley, Sway and Lymington.  The terrain was fairly flat with a few climbs - but nothing like Cornwall !  The scenery varied with moorland and forest,  lots of ponies, cattle and donkeys wandering around and many hamlets with thatched cottages.  Some of the longer stretches of moorland were quite testing, but Don kept my morale up.  Food at the finish was rather welcome as we had clocked up 74 miles in all ( including the ride to the start ) on just two cups of tea, half a dozen chocolates and a banana each.
On Sunday night we celebrated with a nice meal, good music and company at The Monkey House pub.  The next day we had a relaxing ride to Bucklers Hard where we had discounted senior citizens entry and a further 20% off for arriving by bike !  After visiting the museum, we rode through Beaulieu and on to Lepe Park where there are views over to The Isle Of Wight.  After a nice lunch at the cafe we headed back to the campsite.  50 miles in total.
Our last night was spent at The Gun Inn at Keyhaven - another good meal and a few ales !  We met two couples, one with two large dogs - a Deerhound and a Lurcher.  It was very social, apart from the fact that one of the dogs was polluting the atmosphere  with silent f***s which made one feel slightly nauseous.  However we had a good laugh about it on the walk back to the campsite.
We feel that we did our best for the local breweries and have contributed to the economy of Hampshire !

And so I face the final curtain.
Oct 12, 2016, 10:15 pm

Admiral was already at Union Corner when I arrived, followed by John and Phil1. Kath was busy sewing curtains this morning but was not forgotten. There were others missing from our Pack, but then again, too few to mention. Just Simon, Keith and Fred at the other place, and with the weather looking a little doubtful my suggestion of Miss Molly’s was quickly accepted, relayed to TD and we were on our way.

At Longdowns Fred had a rethink. You could almost see his brain whirling as he planned each charted course, each careful step along the byway; Porkellis, Bolenowe, Crowan and then back toward Camborne. The pace, at an average of 12.6mph was, I thought, a little rapid and although I was not exactly lagging behind, more than usual, I decided that at the next opportunity I'll state my case, of which I'm certain. At Penponds I did what I had to do, and reminded Fred that this was an OGIL ride not the Sunday fast group. The route was a bit of make it up as you go along from then on but through it all, when there was doubt Mr Garmin assured me that I had previously travelled each and every highway. Bang on the 23 mile mark we arrived at Miss Molly’s.

TD was already wrapping himself around hot buttered scones.

With the Chairman present behavior was kept in check, Admiral accepting only a peck on the cheek from the waitress. With pleasant conversation wafting around, which, I admit, I find all so amusing, I attacked my eggs on toast with gusto, but making sure that I didn’t bite off more than I could chew. I ate it up, not spat it out. With a clean plate I thought “I've had my fill”, it was time to pay and go home.

I fancied returning via the cycle track to St Euny Church and Carnkie but Fred led us back the boring way, to Bolenowe and on to Penmarth.

The rain’s attempt to spoil the ride came to nothing and although we rode into strong headwinds at times I took the blows, I faced it all and I stood tall.

Our numbers diminished, as usual, as we made our way home; just Admiral, Phil1 and myself returning to Union Corner. Others may have done much more than this, but I did 36 miles, my way. Dean

Belated Ride Report: Wednesday 5th October 2016
Oct 10, 2016, 1:06 pm

In the absence (without leave as far as I can tell) of stalwarts Mercksy to shepherd us around, and Wiggo to record the ride for the benefit of future generations of Wheelers, we met at Union Corner and milled about a bit before heading to the other place and milling about some more. Ultimately Froomey decided that he fancied an Earl Grey upstairs at St Agnes Bakery (St Agnes) and so 6 OGILs, along with 1 OWIL powering a tandem, set out for the distant north coast via Halvasso Hill, Chacewater and skirting Mount Hawke.

Pretty good weather and some confident leading saw us get to within sight of St Agnes in pretty short order, at which point a decision was made to head west along the Porthtowan Road, a rip roaring flat/slightly downhill stretch paid for by a right turn at Towan Cross onto a right nasty beast of a hill past Mingoose, ending at the circular road which runs around St Agnes Beacon. The views up and down the Cornish coast as we cruised around the Beacon Road were worth the price of admission alone – one of the truly great sights.

St Agnes Bakery is probably not the cheapest Wheeler stop there is, but on the other hand the food is very good and the tea gets served in a posh transparent cup. Conversation, as I recall, included speculation as to the next batch of trips with some firm interest expressed in Brittany and a hideaway discovered by Don.

The return leg was via Goonbell and Mithian Downs, across the top of the A30 and then down into the Bissoe Valley. Feeling sporty, the survivors decided a dash through Suicide Alley was preferable to a slog up into Perranwell. Four of us were ultimately left to then soldier on up Hangman Hill - just the job after a long (for me anyway) ride.  The remaining band of brothers then splintered off toward their varied homes, to rub embrocation into achy limbs (for me anyway).


Ride to Stithians via Gweek and Porkellis.
Oct 9, 2016, 9:09 pm

After deciding on a destination and almost on a route, i received a text from Fred announcing he had only just got up, lucky for him we were going past his house so would meet him there.  We took the usual route, so I wont bore you with the details, as it leaves more room for the interesting stuff, such as who had higher heels put on his cycling shoes, whos husband had drained the Famous Barrel almost dry on Saturday whilst wearing a skirt, Who had to sleep naked on a recent holiday as it was sooo hot. The things we talk about....and we hadnt got to the cafe stop yet.  It was extremely busy at the lakeside cafe it seemed everyone with a bike had decided to go there today, many of the local clubs had representatives there and most of them knew either Dean, Dave, Kath or Sonjia. They do get around.  As we left we split up, as some wanted to go a bit further, Richard73 felt like visiting another cafe so he should now be known as Richard2cafestops, he led a group away, leaving 5 of us to head home, as we were passing the Bageley residence I said I would pop in and leave Liz my money for the Grand Firework display, Liz kindly made us all a coffee and we sat outside and continued with the weird conversations, but Fred wouldnt tell us what the panto was going to be, will he be dressing up in ladies clothes again, oh yes he will, I expect. Final run to home. 32 miles for me. 

Riders at start, Richard73, NZ Dave, Sylvia, Sonjia, Jo, Mike, PhilE, Brian, Peter, Kath, Dean, Caroline, plus Fred.  Riders at end Fred, Caroline, Kath, Peter, Dean. 

Look what they've done to my Thong, Ma?
Sep 29, 2016, 2:27 pm

I arrived at Union Corner mid way into a conversation that had obviously started off about the weather, moved up a peg, to care for the environment and rapidly downwards again into the region of feminine nether garments and how many pegs were needed to attach these to the washing line. It was to be one of those rides. Bernie seems to have the fidgets these days and had gone off on a “warm up” lap, down to the Moor, rather than waiting for a) my arrival, and b) 8.50am. So it was Kath, John, Phil1, Bernie and myself that met up with Phil3, Keith and Bryan at the other place, and, it being a bit on the cool side to stand about too long, after sending out the now customary group text, we were on our way, to Poldhu. Things could only get better.

Dropping down the hill to the back gates of Trellowaren, I was thinking that since mentioning in the ride reports the dear elderly lady who we used to regularly pass, and I mean elderly, older than Richard73, she hadn’t been seen again. Then who should come “trotting” up the hill to collect her paper? No not Richard73, pay attention.
It is always a pleasant ride up through the estate and as we came out onto the open area the cows were gently singing in the field adjacent. It was the Moooody Blues, - it ain’t heavy, it’s my uuuudder! If you want to point out that this should have been the Hollies, you can do, but it spoils my story.

The sun came out at about 14 miles from home and I suggested that we took the route past the camels. How many people in the UK can go out for a morning bike ride and see camels? Well, we could have been amongst those as couldn’t, as the “second right” was not the right way. But everyone was in a pleasant mood and took a little diversion so that I did catch sight of them across the fields.

It was blowy down at the beach but, unusually, there was room for us to sit inside. The four at the other table seemed to be talking mostly about cars and boats, so you might guess who they were. On our table it was the Looe Music Festival, though the joys of getting old did creep in.

Having enjoyed the mellow fruits it was up the hill and into the mist, red lights blinking as we went. Those that were blinking working, that is.

One by one the group was swallowed up in the mist, Phil3 first, taking the long way round via Porkellis, rather than up to the main Helston/Falmouth road. Eventually it was just Phil1, Kath and myself that returned to Union Corner; at 46 miles, for me, the end of another grand morning out. Dean

A hair cut, or a close shave? - OGIL ride 21st September 2016
Sep 23, 2016, 2:24 pm

The community speed team were out at Lamanva again, this morning, but try as we did, we could not get above the 30mph speed limit. Bernie had put on a bit of a sprint and was well ahead of Kath, Phil1 and myself. An OTS coach had tried to slow him down, like totally, by pulling out of a junction at about 0.1mph, but you know Bernie, he saw the funny side of it and wasn’t a bit f-ing and blinding. Phil3 was back from his travels and was waiting at the other place with Bryan and guest rider, Keith. Kath suggested Portreath, as she needed to be back by 2 for a haircut by Jill Prior, so it was agreed that she should lead. Now, I learnt many moons ago that if you are going to lead a ride it helps if you know the way, and, this is equally important, know that there are more than one OGIL potential destination that begins with the letter P. But we got there, eventually. A nice gentleman did cause some amusement when he overtook half of the pack before slowing and turning left into Burley Aquatics, and we did go via Porthtowan, begins with a P, resulting in a climb up Rose Hill. It could have been worse, Phil 1 thought we going to Perranporth. TD was loitering around the village when we arrived, there being at least two cafes frequented by the Wheelers, but we had settled on the one adjacent to the car park. The conversation was so stimulating that I have already forgotten it.

The repeated need to get back at a reasonable hour meant that we turned back, through Bridge, up to Redruth and on to Lanner Hill. TD left us soon after starting back and Bryan turned off somewhere near the Gold Centre. We stopped for a brief inspection of Bernie’s bonfire then pushed on home. I had forgotten to switch on Mr Garmin until Lamanva so the 41 miles shown was probably nearer 44. I don’t know where Phil3 had been on holiday but it obviously didn’t involve a lot of cycling. Dean

HILL CLIMB – “it’s a blur!”
Sep 17, 2016, 11:04 am

With a change of venue this year from Cusgarne Hill to Weir Hill at Restronguet Barton it was not clear whether the turnout would be as good without the promise of Theresa’s delicious delights afterwards.  The course was shorter at one third of a mile but with an ascent of over 50 metres (164 feet in £.s.d) there are two points where the gradient ramps up to 12%.  This is a steeper climb and one where an explosive effort from the off may well pay off. 

The turnout was very good with eleven Wheelers assembling at the waterside start line.  Caroline had brought the FW banner to mark the finish by Paul and Hilary’s house where top timekeeper Paul was installed at a table directly opposite the chalked arrivée line.  Down at waterside the chairman was doing his best to master the timing technology (as usual) and keep the contenders in order (as usual).  It was a perfect September evening.   What quieter location could you have for the Wheelers’ hillclimb?  In fact we had hit the evening rush hour as no less than four vehicles decided to assert their right to use our road as the first rider was on the point of starting and the clock had to be stopped for one minute to allow a pickup to continue his evening meander to the bottom. 

Carolyn was first off with Amanda chasing her a few minutes later. Richard was in a class of his own. At minute intervals they set off, increasingly rapidly as if the later riders had been seeded.  Last to go (with no witnesses but the watch, but it made little difference) was the chairman.  In hindsight he felt he had overdone his warm up a tad by riding the OGIL to Marazion that morning. Fastest up was Phil ‘the Blur’ Bartlett who nearly rode over Hilary as well as the line with after-burners full on. Robin was a close second, Ian a close third behind him. One husband beat his wife.  

At the Lemon Arms the results were announced which you can see below.  There was talk of some food next year if we could use the same venue again.  We all agreed it was a good venue and food is always appreciated.  Many thanks to Paul for timekeeping and Hilary for the photos.

Have we seen a changing of the guard or just a flash in the pan? Will the timekeepers’ decisions be challenged?  Will the club splash out on some stopwatches or must we make do with the club sundials? Will Ian remember to fit some extra gears to his bike? The eternal questions don’t change.



VOGIL category  - Richard 73 – 4:42

Women – 1. Caroline – 4:03

                  2.  Amanda – 4:06

Men -  1. Phil 4 ‘the Blur’ -  2:40

             2. Robin – 2:50

             3.  Ian – 3:00

             4.  Chris – 3:05

             5.  Phil 1 Conroy – 3:35

             6.  Steve Hudson – 3:56

             7.  Jim Middleditch – 3:59

             8.  Simon – 4:07      

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We're a local group of cyclists of all ages and cycling abilities who enjoy meeting up to ride for fitness, pleasure and socialising.
We ride all year round and organise rides around Falmouth, throughout Cornwall, the UK and abroad. We strongly encourage beginners and will always have a ride to accommodate them and those who might not be able to go too far because of health reasons. Competent children are welcome accompanied by an adult and all riding is on road (apart from Tuesday night off-road rides). We welcome new members and hangers on, so if you would like to ride with us, think you can handle having the micky being taken and can buy the odd round, come and join us. After riding out 3 times with us you will be asked to join up.
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 I wish I had said that...
"Marriage is a wonderful invention; but then again so is the bicycle puncture repair kit." - Billy Connolly
 I wish I had said that Pt.2
When I was a kid, I used to pray every night for a new bicycle. Then I realized that the Lord, in his wisdom, doesn't work that way. So I just stole one and asked him to forgive me. ------ Comedian Emo Philips
If you thought whizzing down Budock Water Hill was
exciting take a look at these London bike messengers
 I wish I had said that Pt.3
It never gets easier, you just go faster. -Greg Lemond
 I wish I had said that Pt. 4
"Whoever invented the bicycle deserves the thanks of humanity" - Lord Beresford

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