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Club Ride Reports - Archive 2




The Dartmoor Devil

Report By Parky

Steve, Jono, Schalatchi and I travelled up to Dartmoor on Saturday for an overnight stay and early start of 8am at Bovey Tracy. We went to the Cromwell Arms in Bovey Tracy for our evening meal where steaks and slow cooked pork were consumed, plus a few pints of local beer and ciders had to be tested. All were very satisfactory. This pub was also the start of the Devil in the morning. We returned back to our B & B for a nightcap and retired to bed.

Up at 6.30am for breakfast and because it was so early we had to do with cereal, fruit juice and bread and jam as no staff were available to make a cooked breaky.

We arrived at Cromwell Arms at 7.15am on a cold and grey windy day, lots of other cyclists were already at the start signing in and drinking tea and coffee. We all finally signed in Schallatchi had a little problem as he hadn't entered but was taking the place of Jono's son who couldn't make it.

Bang on 8am we started out of the pub car park and face the first hill, Hind Street a good sharp hill for a warm up several other cyclists were in the wrong gear for the nip at the top which was very narrow and caused a bit of a hold up, so a hill start was now necessary.

The rain soon started to get heavier but then the forecast was to clear up around lunchtime, spirits were high. We had a very long and steady climb up to Moretonhampstead and up across Mardon Down. Route sheet read (steep, slippery descent with narrow bits & sharp bend at bottom and over bridge). Not joking by now rain was heavy and the wind had blown lots of leaves onto the road. Brakes did not seem to work. I had my brakes on full and was getting faster towards the bottom so I thought about using my feet to help, Quite frightening! Schalatchi was behind me and had a puncture, right at the bottom luckily. Jono and Steve followed close behind, so we all stopped and helped fix the dreaded ‘p' all agreeing how hair raising that hill had been.

Soon we were in Drewsteignton after climbing again for a couple of miles, here we were greeted by 3 female and 1 male Devils at a much needed control with cakes and water to offer, plus a very jovial banter about who needs to pay to get out of Cornwall, us to get out, or them to be let out.

22km done 520 m climbed.

The rain was now good old Dartmoor rain cold and very wet. Past Castle Drogo through North Bovey heading up past Houndtor with Jay's grave on the right and Houndtor on the left. By now we were up in the low cloud but still enjoying every minute, (like a hole in the head). Fast descent down into Ashburton. I had to stop as I found that the salt from my sweat was washing out of the pads in my helmet and running into my eyes and I could not see. Control at Lavender House Hotel we were welcomed with soup bread and drinks.

Distance 49km 1100m climbed.

More gentle climbing followed by steep hills, cattle grids, mist and heavy rain up over Holne Moor into a strong headwind which was very tiring indeed. At the bottom of as short descent over a bridge a group of people were cheering on the riders with cow bells and drums, it was pouring with rain and blowing a gale, the brave cheery souls egged us on our way, you never know what you might come across on the moors. On another steady descent from Holne Moor with a strong cross wind we crossed a cattle grid and I nearly came to grief, luckily for me the road saved me just in time. They say you should relax going over grids and this proved to be the case for safety!!! Finally we arrived at Princetown, Fox Tor Café where they had put on a quick cyclists menu. Baked beans on toast took about 5 minutes to come. I was feeling shattered after cycling into the wind, and I was thinking, if its like this to the end I would not finish, but luckily we had to retrace our steps on the last leg so we would have wind behind us.

Distance 70km 1740m climbed.

Last leg retrace to Two Bridges Hotel over the moor past the Warren Inn then right for Challacombe and the final checkpoint with a lovely elderly couple sat in their camper with more cakes and water if required. On again into the head wind and squally blinding rain more or less all downhill to Widecombe. (ominous as the rumours were look forward to Widecombe hill). Through the village and there it was; bit more than a mole hill. Bottom gear head down a bit of a slog about half way up the wind dropped off and the skylarks started to sing that last squall was the end of the rain but then we only had about 3 miles left. Time for a photo at the top and a steady ride to the Kestor Inn at Manaton.

At the final junction on the route sheet, a well known voice to us said “this way guys” and to our surprise it was Viv and Lance they were on their way home from Cheddar and made a detour to come and see us finish. Fantastic surprise for the four of us many thanks Viv and Lance best ever support on the day. Finally checked in at Kestor Inn and about a 6 mile downhill to the car park and start point.

Distance 74miles 2320m climbed.

We all got changed in the car park out of our wet gear beside Schalatchi's van,
as Jono dropped his cycle shorts a pretty young lass on a mountain bike rode up
the car park and said “cheeky”.

Well organised ride shame about the weather but then it is Dartmoor .

Parky.

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“Knickers or Thongs?” 

Sunday 7th October '07 Report By KK

Having been unable to cycle for several weeks owing to work commitments I managed to get away and   decided to turn up at 10 o'clock at H.Q. and see if anybody was there. On arriving I recognised two faces we have not seen for a while Bob and his son Daniel. Soon after Denise and Keith & Christine turned up on their shiney new bikes. Keith and Christine have had their tandem for a while but Denise had very recently purchased a brand new light weight bike â€" very smart indeed.

After a quick conflab on where to go, Stithians was chosen for our route and coffee stop of course. Whilst cycling along the ladies started a discussion on what to wear underneath your cycling shorts i.e. knickers or thongs or go Commando.   Various answers were given some unprintable!

Arriving at Stithians Water Sports and Lake there seemed to be several gig boats in training on the lake. After a welcome cup of coffee and a natter we set off again going back on our favoured route via Halvasso. There was no holding the tandem and Denise on the fast descent from Halvasso to Treverva.

It was good to be back on the bike and good company as always.

We cycled 20 miles at a good pace.

___________________________

 

Parky's Remembrance Ride -

Sunday November 11th 2007 (Report by Malcolm Goodall)

Learning from Richard's advice, don't volunteer! I thought I would be the last person to be asked to do a write up â€" we're not even members! (Soon to be resolved).

Not sure which hardy souls cycled from Falmouth , as we were too lazy? But with military precision we all met at Goonhavern in time for the 10am start.

Some 29 riders attended â€" a testament to the welcoming friendly approach of the Falmouth Wheelers, were the fact that seven of them were from the Falmouth Road Runners, who decided to swap their Sunday run for a spot of cycling. I'm sure the promise of a cake stop had no bearing on their decision!

I'm afraid I'm still useless with Cornish geography, but know we left Goonhavern and had a scenic but hilly ride taking us through Fiddlers Green eventually turning left before Cubert and stopping at the Smugglers Den. This was not for the usual refreshment stop, but a chance to pull off the road and observe two minutes silence for Remembrance Sunday. Hopefully one day people will remember when wars stopped, and as a human race we all live peacefully alongside each other!

It was then time to set off making our way to Perranporth. Boyed on by the promise of the cake stop, the hills suddenly seemed a little less steep, and the wind was on our backs. After a fast descent into Perranporth the lead party commandeered a café, and it's staff set to work on providing nourishment for 29 hungry bods.

They rose to the challenge and soon bacon butties were being devoured. I also noticed one tables penchant for beans on toast. I thought there was enough wind without the need for adding to it, but each to their own!

After leaving Perranporth we again negotiated the rolling! hills of Cornwall and made our way back to Goonhavern. Hilary & Paul devised an excellent run, (whoops wrong event) I mean ride, even ensuring the autumn sun shone.

On behalf of the Falmouth Road Runners, I would like to say thanks to you as a club, as we always enjoy our outings and wish we could do more of them. However if I'm going to be asked to do reports, I may have to reconsider that one. Also please note the last time I organised a cycle trip ended up with the involvement of the Peak District Mountain Rescue Team â€" cases of mild hypothermia and Noelene throwing her bike away, (literally)! So for your own sakes, think hard before suggesting I plan a route. You have been warned!

I'm afraid I can't remember all the riders names but you know who you are (and someone took a photo), but to name a few; Hilary & Paul, Roger, Jonathan, Don, Richard, KK, Gill, Denise, Terry & Keith, Malcolm & Noelene, Chris, Tom & Paula, Keith & Chris, Keith & Christine. To the others thanks for making us welcome. Perhaps we all need names on the backs of our jerseys.

 

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Up and Down to Roskillys

By Jono

Route - Treverva>Brill>Gweek>Mawgan>Gear Hill>StMartin>StAnthony-in-Meneage>Carne>Roskillys>Laddenvean>StKeverne>Coverack>Mawgan>
Culdrose>Wendron>Porkellis>Carnkie> Halvasso> Treverva> Falmouth â€" 50 miles plus   

Dear reader, I write this whilst sitting in the A&E department at Treliske Hospital , but more of that later…  

For November it was a very mild day and there was a robust turnout for the Sunday 9am ride, 14 riders in all and with the fabulous new Falmouth Wheelers' website in mind Richard brought along his nifty digital camera to photographically record the trip. Don G was the pathfinder and suggested aiming for Roskillys which was greeted with enthusiasm by all. Jonathan duly handed out the replacement inner tubes he'd borrowed over the years and then off we went. Richard whizzed on ahead and set up ready to take a group shot as we entered Treverva. A truly awe inspiring picture for all who see it, I should imagine. We cycled on through Brill to Gweek along nice, quiet roads chatting all the way, and stopped for a drink in the village next to some giant cardboard cut-out roe deer and a tatty miniature cardboard church plonked on the scrappy patch of grass next to the muddy creek. Don't ask. Things can go a bit wrong in these remote villages. (Father Ted / League of Gentlemen)

Don informed the group that we wouldn't be going the hilly way, alongside the creeks. I was quite relieved as I knew just how hilly that way is. Off we went up to Mawgan and then on to St Martin and then low and behold, alongside the creeks and up and down some of the hilliest roads in Cornwall . Oh well, I needed to get fit. We went around the very picturesque, and remote, St Anthony-in-Meneage peninsula, where for some reason a very big sign located at the village entrance tactlessly and cruelly declares “SLOW CHILDREN” and then on alongside Gillan creek, surely one of the most beautiful creekside lanes in Cornwall.

On the way we encountered a couple and their dog. Schalatchi yelled the cyclists' warning “Livestock in the road!” at which the lady looked quite offended and decidedly unhappy. At that point Red Leader, 50 yards behind, also yelled “Livestock ahead”. Unfortunately we were going too fast to stop and explain we were referring to her lively Labrador . Poor lady, we may have spoilt her Sunday. Up a big hill to a trig point providing one of the best views in Cornwall , and a chance for some ‘relief' by some. Up and down a few more hills (it is Cornwall after all) and then Roskillys for food and refreshment. Snowman continued on to home â€" he's young enough to have a young family so I guess he had to be back early to muck in with feeding and playing duties. Roskillys, as ever, was excellent, but quite expensive, and Lance had the biggest biggest prawn baguette any of us had ever seen. There were easily enough prawns to feed a family of four plus their friends and relations. I reckoned that with the summer season being over,

Roskillys had scraped out their giant freezer to defrost it and had to get rid of all the prawns that had fallen out the catering packs over the last year and got themselves stuck to the floor. Roskillys may have been waiting for someone to order prawns for the last week in order to use them up - who knows? I didn't mention this theory to Lance. Other Roskilly highlights were Richard's soup was extremely hot and several wheelers clambered over an old tractor â€" oh yes, it's non-stop lunacy out with the wheelers. Refreshed, on we went to Coverack, pausing in the village to take in the wonderful view across the bay, and then we all puffed up the near vertical hill out of the village. Fred had a mechanical problem with his gears on his new bike but managed to soldier on. I was quite impressed that we all managed to cycle up without needing medical attention.

At the top of the hill Red Leader regaled us with one of his famous top tips (see his regular column on the new wheelers' website). “One should always change gear when the pedals are pointing at 12 and 6 o'clock ” or was it “between 12 and 6 o'clock ”? I can't remember, but it was a good tip. Schalatchi had a top tip too. “Don't get cold” which prompted us all to get going and was actually a bit better than Red Leader's tip. Sorry, Red Leader.

After Coverack we belted along the long flat straights at 25 mph plus towards Mawgan. There were a couple of breakaways but the most spectacular were the 2 Dons. Don G confided to me afterwards that they just tagged on to the rear and waited for the speed freaks to burn themselves out at which point they broke away. Good tactics. Nigel dived off to go home along the way, Richard, Fred and Scalatchi departed at Mawgan to take the quicker route home, and then to Culdrose for the remainder of us. We continued on to Wendron, lovely quiet lanes all the way, and Hilary and myself had a very interesting theological discussion at the back of the pack, as you do. On to Polkerris, where Red Leader nipped into The Star Inn to purchase some ‘cycling fuel' â€" a bag of crisps. Apparently there were lots of free roast spuds on the bar, which may be worth noting for a later date.

As we pulled away from Polkerris I managed to topple off my bike and wind myself, which was very stupid. Luckily nothing was broken, or so I thought. As we plucky few pedalled the last few miles back to Falmouth I felt quite uncomfortable and started to fear the worst as breathing became difficult. 3 hours after returning home and here I am in A&E at Treliske in pain and a couple of broken ribs diagnosed. Oh well, on the plus side it was a great ride, thanks to pathfinder Don Gunner, and unbelievably I didn't get a puncture, which may be a first for me. It was also a first for Jonathan's son Drew who completed his first 50 miler without even breaking sweat. I hope we didn't put him off cycling with us again. (At least waiting around in hospital gave me the time to scribble down the ride report whilst it's still fresh.)

Riders - 2 Dons, Drew, Fred, Hilary, Jonathan, Jono, Lance, Nigel, Parky, Red Leader, Richard, Schalachi, Snowman.

________________________________

Truro Cycling Club Rosie-Ride

Report By Don Gunner

The event is later this year and probably just as well the summer not being very good. Starting from Tresillian we all used our cars to get there except Richard who cycled, he did get a lift back though. At the start it was quite busy with 50 odd riders jostling for position as we head towards St Michael Penkivel. It was a long climb and this was the last we saw of Parky and Ironman they are training for the Dartmoor Devil and a lot quicker than some of us. Richard pulled away as well leaving the five of us with another bunch of motley riders struggling up the hill, we did see him later though. As we were slogging our way upwards we were suddenly overtaken by four lycra clad fillys. This immediately galvanised some of our members (who shall remain nameless) to step up their tempo to keep up with them.

After very narrow lanes and hairpin bend we were through the woods over the bridge into Ruan Lanihorne. Familiar territory for Dave as it was here he once threatened to burn the local pub down! This is a very pretty spot complete with a duck pond and a river running beside the road. From here a left and a long climb that goes on and on to Ruan High Lanes at the top. A right turn here now takes on to the next control at Portscatho a beautiful spot with commanding views towards Gull Rock, Veryan Bay and Dodman Point. After being fed and watered we set off towards Tregony, we are now a nucleus of 15 riders and we stayed together nearly all the ride.

From Tregony the route took us through Grampound Road it was here that the Penzance Wheelers caught us up after a stop earlier for a puncture. A left turn here and through Ladock, Mitchell,Newlyn East towards Newquay and then left onto Perranporth. A left turn before Perranporth on an unfamiliar road took us to our next control. This was another venue up high with views over the beaches and surrounding countryside.Having satiated ourselves on the delights the ladies were serving us we set off( with Richard joining us again) on the last lap.

This I thought would be fairly straightforward. Oh no it wasn't'first we dithered about looking about for the Sunholme Hotel in St Agnes(they had changed the name) after that I took a wrong turn before Blackwater which was taking us west instead east towards Truro including 15 other riders. Now no one said very much(only a lot of dark mutterings) but I felt more flak coming down than Hitler chucked at us during the forties. After a lot of headscratching and no input from me (still in a state of shock) we got back on the right track once again. Through Truro now and up that nasty hill past Penair school onto the A390 to the finish at Tresillian. Apart from the hiccup at the end it was a very enjoyable event. Fred from Clive Mitchells with a few of the Truro came over to thanks us for our company.

What have I learnt today? How to pronounce Portscatho and start eating a pasty at the end not the middle.

Riders Don.M, Dave,Trevor,Alan(myteacher),Richard and myself

DG - Mileage 65
 

 



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