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They seek them here ….
Oct 28, 2016, 2:16 pm

Anyone passing the other place this morning would have seen more red lights than a trip through Amsterdam’s naughty parts. It was foggy and I was late, so everyone had already assembled and awaited orders. Fred had been so concerned about my facebook post that he would be leading he hadn’t slept all night; said he felt poorly, and went home. The rest of us, faced with a choice of Helston boating lake and Lilly the Pink’s, chose the former and pedalled off into the morning gloom. Bernie’s one mistake was to let me get in front, yes, it does happen from time to time, but he managed to prevent me from leading everyone astray and we pressed on towards Praze. Here we were faced with a dilemma as the main road was closed for road repairs, in both directions. Onwards we went, eventually bearing left down roads that caused Mr Garmin not only to get excited but declare “wtf”. Martyn was taking notes for future audax routes. The weather conditions remained unfavourable. It was grim at Drym. As the miles steadily increased towards the unwritten OGIL target distance to a café stop, we eventually dropped back on to a recognisable route and with miracle precision sped down the Penzance road to the Cattle Market and arrived at the Lake. 23.39 miles. We had all just about ordered before the M&Ms arrived, having been delayed a little by a car driver who had almost driven between the two of them, necessitating a quick nip into Lidl to check out stocks of clean lycra.

For those that take an interest in such things, my eggs on toast were fine, as appeared to be the case with the various selections chosen by the others.

As we readied for the return I noticed a rough patch on my front rim, which on closer inspection appeared to be the makings of a hole. It would have to be easy on the front brake for the journey home. Fortunately(?) there are few down hill stretches on the way back from Helston.

Road works and heavy traffic in Coinagehall Street added a little excitement to the ride through the town and we were well spread out by the time we started to regroup at the corner of Rowes Lane. Eventually only the M&Ms were missing and fearing that they hadn’t had enough excitement for one day first Bernie and then I set off back to find them. All the way back to the lake; no upturned tandem in need of repair; no signs of scattered debris on the road. Margaret had earlier suggested that they might return home via Porthleven, but I had taken that as a comment on the directness of the outward route. Perhaps I was wrong. With a thought that I might catch the others, at least, by Crane garage, I set off back along the main road and did, indeed, get to Retanna at the same time as Bernie. The elusive tandemites had gone the other way, up the Redruth road to Wendron and then back down muddy lanes to intercept with the rest.

The fog had lifted, and the rain set in, by the time I was getting back to Falmouth, but it cleared up and was rather nice in the afternoon. With the extra trip down to the boating lake I had done just 40 miles.

Starring Martyn and Margaret, Bernie as leading male and with supporting cast of John, Bryan, Fred (scene one only) and Phil3. Guest appearance by Keith. Narrated by Dean.

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. 

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