Closed roads are no deterrent

OGIL ride report 27th July 2022

The OGIL WhatsApp group was alight with discussion about an early start, initiated by Damien who had to be back at midday for an unspecified reason. He got a surprisingly large response for a ride start of 7.30 with three other OGILs (names withheld to protect the guilty) deserting the normal ride to savour the early morning dew. That left just seven of us to congregate as the Continuity OGILs at ToP, where the topic of a destination was subsumed by discussion of whether there is likely to be a permanent OGIL splinter group. Eventually, thanks to the intervention of our Illustrious Leader, it was decided that the Hell’s Mouth Kitchen would be a suitable place to indulge our appetites.

On the way up to ToP we were greeted with an ominous number of road closed ahead signs. As usual, we ignored them and ploughed on. It wasn’t until we got to the Halvasso turn that we discovered that it was the road from there towards Gweek that was closed, so we were in the clear (and presumably Fred had got through without any problems). We headed for Carnmenellis, but when we got to the turn to go up the hill to Nine Maidens, we encountered another road closed sign. No problem, we simply skirted the cones and continued. However, a short distance down the road we discovered that the road was in fact unpassable as they were spraying tar on the road (and, it would seem, up many of the hedges), so we had to retrace our steps and head for Penhalvean instead. So, we climbed that hill instead up to Four Lanes, and then we carried on to Brea as John had announced that he needed to stop there to pay a bill. Always wishing to be accommodating, we did exactly that, and stopped at Cowley Granite for John to do his business. I am sure his new worktop will be very nice.

We carried on, resisting the temptation to stop at Miss Molly’s as we passed, heading up to All Saints church to take a left at the main road then immediately right. As we meandered through the more salubrious parts of Camborne we came across another, yes you guessed it, road closed sign. Luckily, on this occasion it was apparent that there was enough of a gap to the side of the fencing for us to continue through. From there it was up to Roscroggan, then Mount Whistle, Coombe and on to Hell’s Mouth. Despite problems with the card payment machine, the service was quite adequate, as was the quality of the food and coffee (despite rumours).

Hell's Mouth Kitchen
Team Wheelers looking happy after their refreshments at the Hell’s Mouth Kitchen
Hell's Mouth
Nobody fancied a swim at Hell’s Mouth today

After a couple of brief chats with fellow travellers, we set off for the return journey into Gwithian and up Prosper Hill to Connor Downs, then on to Carnhell Green and Praze. From there it was straight up everyone’s favourite hill (right at the school, as opposed to the left fork which is everyone’s least favourite hill) to Black Rock, then on to Releath and straight across to Coverack Bridges. From there it was straightforward – right at Wendron School and a brief spell on the A394, on which the traffic obligingly gave us plenty of space when overtaking but thought nothing of crossing the double white lines to do so. All was well as we were now on the home straight, until we pulled off at the Retanna lay-by when there was a sharp report, not unlike a gunshot, and the author’s rear tyre went alarmingly soft. What then followed was an agonisingly slow tube change, due in part to ineptitude and part to puny arthritic thumbs and being out of practice. Thankfully, the audience was distracted by the arrival of four of the Wheelers ladies, so the time taken has not been recorded.

Once the change was completed we continued home the usual way.

An interesting ride and quite enjoyable (apart for the visit from the P fairy!) – about 78 km for me.

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