Ride Report – Summer trip 2010
After months of preparation and 3 trips up to Shrewsbury, the time had finally come – it was Friday the 3rd September 2010, the time 9.30, the place – The Fwrrwn Ishta Car Park, Machen.
13 top guys had gathered for a weekend of drinking, biking and Tom Follery.
Destination was Eastridge Woods, just South of Shrewsbury for an afternoon of down-hilling. The ride turned out to be a tad tougher than planned, but eventful enough with plenty of natural singletrack routes. Some rocky, very rooty, and some fast flowing sections – well worth the stop off.
It was then off to our digs – The Horseshoe Inn @ Bridges
Well we were actually staying at the YHA just around the corner, but we spent more time in the pub than the hostel.
Thanks to Jess, Jess & Jess for the food and beer on Friday night, a nice warm up for the Saturday night ahead. Would it be worthwhile leaving this excellent establishment, this weekend?
Congratulations to Jock for sticking the night out drinking with Mike, not sure you should have left 3 times and still returned for more – but you did !!!
A fairly early night considering the punishment that was to come on Saturday.
After searching for Mike in the streams and gardens around the YHA, we also re-checked back at the pub, we found him in his van, tucked up like baby.
Breakfast was superbly served up by the landlady at the YHA, although the order to do our own washing up was a slight shock to some of us. A few bad heads, but still had plenty of time to recover while waiting for the other 11 lads.
All arriving at about 10.30, an hour later we were ready to head off.
Leaving the YHA we headed on the lane to Bishops Castle, and the Cap’n immediately called on his Vice to re-check the map, and a quick shout and yell to the herd resulted in a turning back on ourselves to head passed the Horsehoe Inn, and onto Coates Farm.
Heading up a rocky track we were soon on the long climb up to the top of the Long Mynd – 3 miles, not too tough as the length reduced the gradient, but still a drag for the hungover riders, especially Harty who conveniently kicked his rear mech off and had a breather while fixing it.
At the top we turned right at Shooting Box, and on to the top of Long Mynd – Pole Bank is the high point at 517 metres.
It was onward towards the gliding club at the far ed of the Mynd, where we were to pick up the first descent down Minton Batch.
A slight early entrance on to the trail was taken, as the main track was not in view at the time, but gladly not too much of the trail was missed. The trail took us meandering down the valley on singletrack, following a stream, having to peddle more than I would have liked, but this might just have been to stay ahead of Beaker.
The general view was that this was a fine descent, except for those that were stuck behind Crockett, who was the only one braking al the way down.
Wrighty’s call for a pint was ignored as we had to climb back up through the forestry track out of Hamperley, which took us back below the Gliding Club. Passing behind the club we were heading back along John Mytton Way towards descent number two.
We picked up the Round Hill track, and headed off to what appeared a run down through the fields. However, it turned out to be an excellent fast, flowing and sometimes (get your brakes on) descent, as we hurtled down a steep grassy bank only to climb the other side and onwards onto the dirt track, which swept all the way down to Little Stretton.
Time for that pint in the Ragleth Arms – lovely pint of Butty Bach and then it was onward to Church Stretton for the climb of the day.
Carding Mill Valley was it’s name, a scene for walkers, but the 24 of us battled on to the Car Park after the visitors centre, and this is where Option earned his prize for TW@T of the day – a mutiny was lead, and four tired Moo’s headed off back to the pub in Church Stretton.
It was a killer, and I believe Ade and Daf rode the whole climb, and Ant would have had his oldman’s bladder not failed him and nature called.
The rest of us pretty much pushed to the top of Motte’s Road. Here we took a right turn and headed down some more grassy tracks to The Batch.
After taking out some wild horses it was speed all the way to when the singletrack started. It all looked very good from the top, and the trail hugged the side of the valley as we descended.
At this point Kev decided it was time ton inspect the heather, and nose dived off the side of the trail.
The trail soon levelled off and we were back on the road heading for Church Stretton to meet at the Kings Arms.
A few pints later is was the days equivalent of climbing Alpe d’Huez – well nearly.
The initial climb up the lane was steep, but the bugger kept going and going and going right to the top of Shooting Box, where we had earlier in the day started from. At this point it was 3-miles of downhill, descending the very climb we had came up to start the day, whilst tired this was a great blast on which to further work up a thirst, that was waiting back at The Horseshoe Inn.
Some decided they would take the lane, back via Ratlinghope – bad move, not only was it probably twice as long it was also pretty sketchy, wasn’t it Wrighty – the biggest off of the day went to Johnny as he, well came off on a lane !!!! Rumour has it his leg is infected and he is on antibiotics – again !!
Back at HQ – it was decided that as there was to be a meal and entertainment arranged and this would be our venue for the night.
The landlord delayed the music just so we could eat, and at 9.30 the band kicked off – well the duet did. A great welcome from the Moo’s was given to the duet as we all left to the side room for the weekends awards, which would incorporate last months prizes and also the captains challenge, or should I say the Vice’s challenge as it was to be – I’m a Miggly Moo get me out of here !
of the month – Owain Crockett
Rider of the day - Mike
The task was to pick the bush tucker meal for your opposition, if they failed to eat it. They would have another pint, and so on.
The meals were –
Hot Chillies, Anchovies, Cockles, Baby Food, Garlic, Sardines, Doggie Bites, Cat Food and a Caterpillar.
your eating manners are a disgrace – shovelling
it in like that.
Back into the bar, it was time for a break for the duet, and then this appeared
I have never seen so many Miggly Moos quiet for the next 30 mins.
A massive thanks to all at The Horseshoe Inn, as without their hospitality the weekend would have been slightly less entertaining – Great Food, Great Beer, Great Entertainment and Fantastic Time-Keeping.
The YHA owners as the accommodation was excellent and the breakfasts well needed – such a solid structure to have withstood that Thunder in the night, oh and the Floods!
Some quotes from the weekend –
“Gordon would have loved this ride” – Ant
“When it comes to numbers riding, riding hard and drinking hard, there is not another club in the country that would beat us” – Ant
“I’m awfully sorry Mrs YHA lady I will get them to put the wardrobe back” – Cap’n Peal
“You are the best bikers we have ever had here, your all solid men, not scrawny like most we get here” – Bonnie Tyler
“I am not staying in there with that Cantankerous @*$?” – Option
“Last orders at 1.30” – the landlord Billy or was it Bobby !
“Mike get’em in son” – Jock
“I’m throwing the towel in – he is bleeding from his head” - Harty
“This is definitely the hardest thing I have ever done on a bike, given my current fitness level” – Chris Watkins
“Crockett your breathe smells better” – everyone
“People think I am dull cause of how I sound, but I am not really” - Rog
“Time for a pint yet” - Wrighty
“Chillies, Cat Food and Caterpillar” – Pissy Mike
Overall hope you all had a good one, here’s to next years trip.