Torrential downpours were the order of the day as Vice Cap, Ant ‘Ryan the Steam’ led a group of ten Jacque Cousteau look-alikes on their outward journey through the woods.
It was good to see relatively new rider, Kev the Plane, out in the harsh conditions; unlike some more established ‘butterfly riders’ (only go out when its fine!) who were conspicuous by their absence.
The conditions put a whole new slant on the ride, as our skills were put firmly to the test. As one Moo was overheard saying ‘you really only appreciate the dry conditions, when you ride in the worst of the weather.’
'Ryan the Steam' wasn’t the only rider who was dreaming of the that perfect cup of, ‘Darjeeling’ or ‘Camomile,’ to warm the cockles as we slid around stream-like singletrack, heading for the Maenllwydd, the Wenallt and onto the Rudry Common descent.
Gaz and Beakers new mud tyres did ‘what it said on the tin’ as they descended Rudry Common leaving a trail of sliding Moos in their wake. Kev the Plane will have to be re named ‘Kev the Aquaplane’ following his first attempt at the infamous run-off!
That ‘perfect cuppa’ mentioned earlier, was still uppermost in Ryan the Steams thoughts as we pushed our cranks straight past our usual watering hole that is known as the Maenllwydd Inn. Ant was due on a nightshift later on in the evening and couldn’t wait to get to work to get the tea urn bubbling away!
We waved goodbye to Ant and Kev (also on nights), before completing the singletrack and then grassy descent to Rhyd-y-Gwern Farm. It was at this point that three Moos proved that they were not so hard-core after all. Mentioning no names (Scrippsy, Owen Rees, Jeff Wherlock), these three disappeared to go for a shower and change of clothes before joining us ‘hardened types,’ who were getting dry in front of a roaring fire at the Oak! Crock was standing stone-like at the bar in a puddle of, what he said was water, but the rest of us recognised as a familiar smell, normally associated with the older member of our group, Gordon!
Crock is seen, caught on camera, below peering over the Oak bar saying: ‘I’m sorry about the smell and mess on the floor Bill, I’m just too cold to get to the toilet. Can I have a pint of cider to warm me up? , preciousssssssss’
Because of the decreased numbers it hardly seemed fair to give the less auspicious of the monthly awards to any of the hardy souls that rode (all of them (except the golden shower brigade!) should have been given Rider of the Month), so this months awards will be dished-out next week, when the ride will be taken by ‘Scrippsy’ Thornton.
Hopefully, fine weather will again grace us next week, which will no doubt spur the ‘butterfly riders’ to come out of their cocoons and hit the trails.