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Marazion - got there eventually! 25/09/11
Sep 26, 2011, 2:51 pm

The forecast OK and Don Gunner arrived at the start without tales of doom and gloom about the weather – what more can you ask?  A rather small number of the ‘usual suspects’ were ready to go: it usually seems to be the case these days!  h and Marazion was agreed upon for the destination.
We headed off via the oh-so-familiar Halvar***ole, unusual to be passing through there without Red Leader singing its praises!  Onwards it was through Carnkie and Porkellis and Nancegollan before there was the all-too-familiar ‘hiss’ from a back wheel – mine!  Why is it always the back one?  The Wheelers repair team, under the expert supervision of Master Mechanic Gunner, swung into action and a replacement tube was soon in place.  Problem was – this one was also duff, with a dicky valve stem: all attempts to inflate with several pumps failed.  It was off with the second offender and on with another – all OK this time thanks to some excellent handywork from Fred.  The Wheelers were suitably impressed with Martyn’s super-slick, all powerful, silver plated wonder pump: how many Wheelers will be off to their cycle shops for one of these?  Whilst this was happening we were passed by the One and All peloton and some CycleLogic riders.   And – where was Don Morris?  He had sped on so far ahead and must have thought he was lost!

Onwards via Godolphin Cross and Goldsithney and a quick chat with passing Robin, Simon and Co, before diving into Marazion and the ever-popular café.  The café was fairly busy, but it was not long before we were all tucking into large breakfast baguettes and similar cholesterol-charged goodies!  JB even had his without being left to last!  Ian arrived – having latched onto some other riders.  This is always a reliable café and very good value, with the usual pleasant service and a smile.

We headed into the hills between Ludgvan and Trencrom, and it was here that Dale provided our second puncture fiasco.  Yes, it was the back wheel, and yes it wasn’t without complications, but again Martyn’s ‘wonder pump’ saving the day, not to mention Master Gunner and Fred!  Soon we crossed a ford – most  Wheelers sensibly opting for the footbridge; although Fred did try to emulate Parky’s attempts on Bodmin Moor a few years ago – but without the drama!  These back lanes eventually brought  down into Lelant, and across the causeway to Hayle.  We took the usual pleasant detour round the creek by Phillack and then on to Connor Downs, Carnhell Green and Praze: is the drag up from here as long as that hill from Gweek to Edgcumbe?

From here it was via Black Rock, Carnmenellis, Penmarth and that nasty little nip up to the top of Carnkie.  We carried on up to Crane Garage, from where we went our own ways: some via Halwhatsit and some to the Stonemasons for the obvious! 

A good ride of about 55 miles, with all the usual Wheelers’ banter and really ideal cycling weather.  As someone once said ‘you never regret going’, but many may regret not going!  After all it was most entertaining, with everyone playing their part. Dan Dare

September Pathfinder from Eden Valley Camp Site
Sep 23, 2011, 3:23 pm

I decided to start my weekend on Friday, so left Sue at home and drove to Lanlivery. I arrived at the camp site and had lunch sitting in lovely sunshine. Trevor 2 gave me a surprise when he turned up with his tent. After he had pitched the tent, we decided to do a short ride to recce the area. This turned out to be a 20 mile loop with one wrong turning which took us down to St. Blazey. Thus we had a long climb back to the camp site. Trevor disappeared like a rocket up the hill !

Back at the site we showered and spruced up, walked to The Crown Inn for beer and food, and then back for an early night. Next day Trevor was up bright and early to go on a training ride. I thought better of it and decided to ride to Fowey. Just before I got there, the heavens opened, but luckily there was a bus shelter nearby where I took refuge. Down and down I wheeled into Fowey for a welcome cuppa and a little look around and some more rain! I decided not to retrace my steps on the “homeward” journey, but crossed on the ferry to Bodinnick -- more hills and more rain!

At Lerryn, I had a sandwich and a drink whilst sitting on the quay enjoying the beautiful views. Another shower, so I sheltered in the mower shed before cycling along the valley to Couchsmill and then up the hill to Lostwithiel. Trying to avoid the main road, I picked a bad hill and so ended up walking back and across the main road and so to the camp site. Cath and Clive had arrived in their caravan. Trevor got back and said he had done 70 miles – mad or not? Later seasoned campers Nick and Christine arrived! After a short walk, it was a hot shower and to the pub! The night was really stormy, but we were up bright and early waiting to see who else would arrive. First came Don and Fred, then Steve and Gill and lastly Paul and Hilary. Christine wisely chose to stay in the van, relaxing with a book and the telly! The rest of us set off amid showers, winding our way past Lanhydrock, down to Respryn Bridge and then making a long climb before crossing the A390. We sighted and obelisk on a high point. A debate ensued as to where it might be. We discovered, a little later, when we stopped at the Lodge gates, that it was on the Bocconoc Estate and erected by the owner in 1771,Thomas Pitt, in memory of his wife’s uncle and benefactor, Sir Richard Lyttleton. The obelisk is 123 feet high.
We continued on to Lerryn, past Couchsmill, with the skies clearing just in time for lunch. This was pasties and paninnis at the shop there. Suitably refreshed, we back-tracked to Couchsmill where we took a left turning up yet another hill and back to the bottom entrance to Lanhydrock where Fred thought it would be easier to go through the grounds of the house than up the road. We made our way back to the camp site where we said our “Goodbyes” and then headed home, all rather damp and tired. However, it was a good ride, in good company with a pleasant change of scenery. A hard 29 mile ride. Click here to see the profile and route. Don 2

Don't say the 'P' word... Sunday 9 o'clockers 11/09/11
Sep 13, 2011, 4:13 pm

It was never expected to be a good turnout as there was a Audax from Conner Downs and a lot of riders were heading for France.
The French trip was cancelled !!!  The thought of Mal-de-Mere was obviously to much for some.

Anyway, 11 riders met at 9.00. Bernie and Dave went off on their 9.30 at 9.00 ride leaving 9 of us who duly set off into the wind heading for the Lizard.  At the top of Gweek drive near Garras Richard 1 left us to do his own thing.  Shane took us thru Trelowarren and out towards Newtown ending up at Treboe Cross then to Kuggar and on to St Ruan and ending up at the amazingly located Polpear Cafe for refreshments. (Britain's most southerly cafe and building. Ed.)
We then headed back as the weather was looking sadder at the top of Gweek drive Don mentioned the "P" word and immediately got one! A luverly rusty nail.
Ian left us there as he had a Football match to watch in Wendron and the rest of us watched the master at work. I got home before it rained - I hope the others didn't get too wet. Fred

Cropplease ripped tyre emergency - Sunday 9 o'clockers 28/08/11
Sep 2, 2011, 10:57 am

There was a good turnout at H.Q. and so Caroline disappeared off to the hills with Bernie and Admiral!
Those left decided on a destination of Marazion - off we went and by the top of Halvasso there was already a split with Richards 1 & 2 Robin 2 a visitor named James and the young lad Shaun who are both on holiday and yours truly.
At the top of Carnkie Richard 1 said he would wait for group 2 so we were 5. We went the longer way round via St Erth and had only been at the cafe for 15mins when the others arrived. After coffee Eric & Ernie left to go back to Helston as they had a show on later. As a group of then 8 being joined by Don Trevor and Graham we set off for Trencrom. At the top Robin had a puncture which turned out to be a bit serious as he had a split in his tyre!! That’s ok though as Don carries a spare tyre so we’ll wait at Trencrom for him. Unfortunately we were at Cripplease so Don rang to find out why we were not at Trencrom?  

Anyway, a repair was made and off we went to find Don at Griggs. Robin decided that as the tyre had lasted thus far he would chance it but stay with Don just in case. Richard 2, James, Shaun and I pushed on, or should I say James and Shaun pushed on, with me and Richard 2 catching up at junctions as they didn't know the way home.
   A great ride with good company and both Richard and I wish we were younger. Fred

August Tea Treat ride.
Aug 22, 2011, 8:00 pm

With the club planning to meet at Stithians lake mid morning, the nine oclockers numbering some 13 riders (with two hours to waste before treats), headed off to the Norway Inn before ambling over to Chacewater via Bissoe. Trevor 2 was sporting a very nice, new titanium frame that he had built up with parts from a Bianchi and other donor bikes and as usual was lightening on the hills.

Across to Blackwater and the ATV centre before dropping into Wheal Rose where poor old five pound Jim did battle with a wasp and came off the worst.  With Don Morris leading the group via Four Lanes and the Big Flat Lode it was a quick descent down to the lake where other club riders were just arriving. Thirty seven + riders enjoy an unusually warm, sunny day overlooking the lake before heading back to Falmouth enmasse. Thanks to Steve L for organising it and the club treasurer for so generously funding the buns.


Stop Press..... FW pro rider Robin S riding the Etap Hibernian in Ireland was 89th out of 1200 completing the 84 mile course in just over 4 hours.  Well done & a fantastic achievement!

Disappearing cyclists - Sunday, 12th August
Aug 17, 2011, 11:49 am

Under grey skies but with the promise of fine weather 12 riders started off from our usual venue. The route proposed was using the King Harry Ferry to visit Melinsey Mill. By the time we arrived at the ferry our numbers had dwindled to 5. Richard 1 and 2, Don M, Trevarno Dave and myself, which reminded me of a certain Agatha Christie novel. For politically correct reasons I cannot name the title, although the more erudite members will know the name. (Politically correct title illustrated left. Ed.)
Once across it was a hilly but picturesque journey to Ruan Lanihorne, Tregony, Veryan and down a steep hill to the Mill which is a very pleasant watering hole.
On leaving, the 2 Richards and Don M led the charge back up the hill to Veryan. After a breather at the top we then headed for Pendower beach where it was a short walk along a footpath to the road and back up to the A3078. At the top we stopped to admire the stunning views of the beach and Gerrans Bay.

From there it was back over the ferry to Point, Devoran and Falmouth. A somewhat hilly but very enjoyable ride. 45 miles. Don G

September Pathfinder Ride (Camping) Details
Aug 16, 2011, 7:54 pm

Now that Clive has finished riding up & down the Bissoe valley looking for topless ladies he and Kath thought you would like details of the Wheelers pow wow in E.Cornwall. (Ed)

The ride will start from Eden Valley Campsite ww.edenvalleyholidaypark.co.uk , Lanlivery, at 10.00 am on Sunday 18th September. Their phone number is 01208 872277.
When booking camping space please say that you are with the Falmouth Wheelers so that we can ensure that we are all together.  There  is a very nice pub just up the road and we could book a table if anyone fancied eating there on the Saturday evening.  Let us know nearer the time and I will book a table. 
The pub is The Crown Inn at Lanlivery .The pub also has accommodation if anyone wished to stay.
At the coffee/lunch stop there is a selection of food including pasties, pannini's and cream teas, there is also a pub, so plenty to choose from. Kath

Granite and Serpentine Way – July 31st - 163km audax randonnée
Aug 9, 2011, 10:55 am

A dozen or so hardy souls turned up at the village hall in Carnon Down for an 8.30 start. This popular 163km audax event was being resurrected after a gap of several years by organiser Martyn, together with the 100km Lizard Loop and a new introductory ride, the 50km Carns and Killas. It reminded me that 162km is 100 miles, one of the old standard distances that clubs ride within 8 hours. An interesting target in itself.

As we enjoyed a cup of coffee before the start there was a little apprehension about the weather. It was definitely promising – rain that is. But when? On an audax ride be ready for anything. If its coming there’s no point in whingeing. Just get on and ride!

As we set off along the Chacewater road heading for Portreath I settled into a group with Helston Trevor, Dale, Ian, Amanda and Bill Colman, who was riding with a Rohloff 14 gear system. We made our first scheduled stop at Mount Pleasant for an information control. In case you have wondered why audax events have information controls they are needed to ensure that riders follow the route and do not cut corners. (No one for one moment is suggesting that cyclists would think of c...h...e...a...t...i...n...g). They tend to have the one disadvantage of a proper manned control ie. the paperwork, and none of the advantages ie. the food, drink and some shelter. You have to look for an answer to a question on your brevet card, then find no one has a pen that works, so then you have to try and keep the single word/ digit answer in your head for the next few hours until you can find a kindly fellow rider who might just be persuaded to lend you his writing instrument. By then you may well be struggling to keep another such answer, or three, in your head. As the fatigue accumulates with the mileage the likelihood of you satisfying “route integrity” begins to recede. So another test for man and machine is added to the challenge of the ride! But good audax riders take this all in their stride. (What was that about whingeing?)

A fast descent to Portreath was followed by the steady climb of Tregea Hill, where we got passed by some riders from the Newquay club. They were pushing too hard to be on our ride. Along the North Cliffs we encountered our first flurries of rain but nothing serious enough for a stop to cape-up. After Hayle, Amanda led us up the long road past the Bowl Rock at Trencrom. Then in sight of the next control on the hill at Towednack the route sheet directed us down through Halsetown to the edge of St Ives before turning up another nice climb to the control at the home of John and Linda Petzing. They were waiting with very welcome cups of tea and coffee and some food to refuel us after the first 30 miles. What a place for a control. Amazing views spread out below their house. Unfortunately we could only imagine them as the mist and cloud closed in.

With renewed vigour we set off again on the road to Zennor and Pendeen, occasionally having to dodge the holiday traffic in what Martyn had wisely noted on the route sheet were “pinch points”. The wind was stiffening in our faces but the actual wet stuff was still holding off – just. But not for long. Descending through Newbridge the rain gently started and from here on that fine misty drizzle kept us in a semi-soggy state for the rest of the day. But who’s whingeing? We weren’t cold. Our limbs glistened as the pedals whirred. Our spirits were high as we sped down through Madron and Gulval occasionally getting flashes of St Michael’s Mount through the thin veil of rain. A brief stop was needed when I punctured on a sharp stone. My comrades assisted as Dale held the bike and Trevor made hissing noises just as I finished inflating the tyre. Naughty Trevor! Soon however we were once more shifting well over the flatlands around Penzance. Passing through Marazion there were mutterings in the group as the waft of pasties and chips nibbled at our appetites and tempted us to stop. But we were rolling along well and no one really wanted to give in and stop yet.

From Godolpin Cross the good route sheet directions helped us navigate our way through some twisty lanes across to our next control at Little Pengelly Farm tearoom. It was a welcome respite after 55 miles in the saddle and from the steady drizzle. Peter Hansen was there to stamp our cards as we downed cups of tea and made short shrift of some truly tasty sandwiches and homemade coleslaw. Somehow it felt as if we were nearly home despite another 45 or so miles to go on the route sheet. There was still the small matter of visiting the Lizard and the even less significant matter of that hill at Helston, oh and then that other little ramp at Rosevear on the way to Goonhilly. Come on! No more whingeing. Let’s get on with it!

Helston was not so bad after all. Nor the ramp at Rosevear. Helston Trevor was in form and making those hills look nothing at all. That little rest at the last control had paid off. We were motoring well once again as we crossed the Goonhilly Downs, passed our very last information control at Traboe Cross, passed through Kuggar and finally reached the green on the Lizard. Pity there was no control outside the Regent Café as there used to be but we soon found the friendly face of the AUK controller, Chris Bryant (chairman of CTC Cornwall) by the boot of his car with stamp at the ready and bananas on offer.

The last leg of 26 miles lay before us. The drizzle had just about stopped. It was then back along the main road to Gweek via the Wheel Inn (not that we could stop there). We were on a mission to finish the ride sooner rather than later. The route took the shorter long climb out of Gweek and then across to Madron. There were signs of fatigue beginning to show after 85 miles as the elastic holding the group together began to stretch and get longer. But it never snapped completely. On we rode through the rolling hills of Porkellis (still no time for a pint), Carnkie, Stithians and Perranwell until finally we hit the very last big one up to the finish at Carnon Downs. It wouldn’t be a proper audax ride without a big hill near the end, now would it!

The effort involved in an audax ride of this length tunes up the appetite very precisely. Your fuel tank knows exactly what it needs at that moment. The homemade date or peach crumble was enticing enough, but there were buckets – oh yes – buckets of CUSTARD as well! That really hit the spot. We were four happy finishers. Martyn and Margaret had given us a randonnée to remember. Simon J

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