SUMMER Trip Weekend Report
31st August & 1st Sept 2012
The date was set, the venue was announced but most important of all 10 courageous riders (Johnsy, Russ L, Pealy, Berni, Knotty, Kev, Jonny P, Reg, Budgie and Julian) braced themselves for a weekend of riding with the prospect of a few beers and lowering each IQ level to that of a 5 year old child!
A brisk 10am start was the order of the day, 4 cars in convey departed Machen and headed for the M4 and onto the M5 motorway, in no time at all 4 vehicles approached Dartmoor. Advance planning by the Captain enabled the herd to take a shortcut to Princetown via a narrow country lane stumbling upon a family of pheasants, country bumpkin Berni was heard saying “run them over Johns – they’ll soon get out of the way” – Captain was having none of this and proceeded to drive at 2mph for the next 7 miles until every little feathered friend was safe and sound!
After a near crash miss by Kev AKA The Plane – where Kev proceeded to pull out of a junction early into the patch of an incoming BMW, Knotty says this isn’t the first time Kev has pulled out early!
The local penal complex greeted us, the usual forward thinking Ex Captain Pealy posed the question
“What was the prison used for, before it was a Prison”?
Answers on a post-card to “I’m a thick tw*t @ Dartmoor”.
Before the Friday afternoon ride we decided to have a quick “livener” at the Plume of Feathers Inn, for those Historians out there this pub dates back to 1785 – think this was the same year that Scripsy was born?
After a swift pint we all assembled for Captain Johns MBR Top 20 UK route! We hadn’t even left the pub car park before we had our first casualty of the day – Kev the plane trying to re-enact his youth pulling wheelies, think you should keep practising Kev as he landed right on his back-side!
The ride commenced and we headed for the reservoir albeit after a little circumnavigation man (say the word in a Jamaican accent), along the way Ex Captain Pealy had an off where he tried to jump a Sub-Way river crossing, it was only a foot long! From this point we were nearing the home leg of the ride along a disused railway line which was like an Ariston washing machine – it went on and on and on and on...
Along the way we met up with a lady who was on an Electric Bike, we managed to get a photo of her as shown below. She informed us that the reason for the electric bike was not due to her being overweight but due to her illness as she had ME, before she elaborated we left leaving her to catch us up on the disused railway line!
All 10 riders made it back safely to the Plume of Feathers pub if not a little tired after a 16mile Moor ride, again we sampled more of the local ale and decided to eat at such a worthy establishment, everyone ordered their meal, mixture of fish, steak, Rack of ribs, coleslaw and Corn of the Cob for Berni and Gammon beans and chips for food critic Kev. During the meal news filtered through that another Moo would be joining us – no other than Option who managed somehow to get finish early – Hooray!
We said our goodbyes to the Plume and headed for the short journey to Tavistock
In Tavistock we were staying in a 5 star bunk-house with Egyptian linen, after being handed our tokens for the shower, a quick swill and a shave by all and we were ready for whatever Tavistock had to throw at us!
A couple of Shandys in the Union house, and it was walkabout time to see the museums of Tavistock... some of us even managed eating Kebabs under the stars...
As pre-arranged a further 7 riders made the journey from Machen to Dartmoor, these includes Tonty Schlongtastic, Dai the Eye, Beaker, Gaz, Chrissy Watkins, Owgie and Shagnasty – once booked in it was time to get the steeds ready for Beaker’s ride extravaganza!
It was a staggered start to the ride and Beaker and Berni had to visit Dartmoor Cycles, Jeff had got wind that they sold a middle ring 32-42 combo and wanted to see it for his own eyes, whilst there Berni wanted a grease-monkey to look at his back break as it had taken a pounding Friday afternoon after some of the descents Captain had arranged...
From Dartmoor Cycles we all headed in some shape or form onwards to Tavi woods, no further than 10 minutes into the ride a breakaway and peloton group had formed, unfortunately for me I was in the latter and Beaker told me to take a short cut threw some farmers fields with mud up to my middle ring! Whereas the breakaway group carried on using the country lanes – was this pre-determined?
Once the peloton group had caught up with the breakaway group it was onto Tavi Woods, here we sampled some natural and man-made trails, Knotty must have caught some big air as somehow he managed decompress his air chamber in his rear shock (Note to Beaker – can you confirm I’ve used the correct terminology please?).
Using the Miggly Moo head cam I managed to catch this image of Knotty catching some air on one of the drops before his rear shock problem! Hang Tough Stevo...
Next port of call was Gawnton woods, along the way by a stroke of luck we managed to stumble across a nice little pub where the owner hailed from Abergavenny?
After one or two pints later and a plate of sandwiches for Ex Captain Peal we were off to sample the downhill delights of Gawnton woods.
Around 10 miles of country lane later we arrived at the woods and we weren’t to be disappointed, it’s a shame that Crockett wasn’t with us as he would have ate up everything these downhills threw at him.... There was a mixture of blue, black and red runs which were beautifully maintained and natured, take note Beaker and Ade for Machen surrounding area!
After several runs later and several climbs later we decided to call it a day and headed for our 5 star accommodation, thankfully it was downhill all the way into sunny Tavistock...
After a little soul searching we managed to find a pub with some form of beer garden, so we rested our weary legs and looked forward to some liquid refreshment with a little food thrown in.
It was one of those unforgettable afternoons where we were gathered around a few tables listening to legendary old and new about Sh*t!
Some old, some new, some classics some blue – Ant has a full repertoire stories concerning the brown stuff!
It mustn’t go unmentioned but a big thanks to Owgie and Tony Schlong for their sponsored beer swill where they both tried to consume as much Doombar in as little time as possible – I believe they managed to collect enough money for the little donkey orphanage in Tavistick to keep going for the next 5 years.
After an afternoon of chat, a few beers and a few bags of chips it was back to the bunkhouse to use the shower tokens once more...
Everyone met at the Union dressed in Inappropriate Headwear, some were classics especially the headwear worn by Option! At this point Owgie and Ant wanted to carry on the drinking festivities by playing Zip Zip Boing! For some people this is an easy game but for some of the more intellectual Moo members Knotty and Beaker’s IQ level dipped from an impressive 150 to 25 we witnessed Zip Zip Boing of the highest order! This game led to a new possible favourite “Silent Zip Zip Bong” especially for our Russ...
In between the daily and monthly awards were presented by Captain the Vices, monthly awards went to August Rider Knotty and Tw*t went to Shagnasty... Summer trip awards were also presented namely crash to Pealy, Wurzel to Beaker, Guest award to Schlong and the Pitman Off saw Reg being piped at the finish line by his younger, fitter brother Jonny P.
Time to move onto the next pub...unfortunately not everyone made it to the new venue, think the sponsored beer swill was a charity doo too far for some...
The rest of the night fizzled out a little as I think the long days riding, especially the Friday for some took its toll on our weary legs so it was Kebab time and an early night for most...
Looking back from I certainly had a good weekend, I’m hoping the rest of the Moos that attended also enjoyed themselves, the Friday ride was a little different, the scenery was outstanding but I don’t think it would make my Top 20 MTB rides of the UK but at least it “blew the cobwebs away”
Saturdays ride was totally different from the Moors ride on Friday, the tide took in 2 different woods with an abundance of downhill trails for varying ability, and in between the woods we also covered vast amounts of country lane and a superb farmer’s field downhill!
Finally a big thank you goes to Francis the owner of Tavistock bunkhouse who made us all feel very welcome and using his culinary skills in the kitchen for our breakfast’s, thanks goes to Beaker for arranging the Saturday ride route, thanks for Russ for chipping in on Vices duties and a big thanks goes to all those drivers who volunteered in driving to Tavistock!
Oh and one more thanks goes to Tony Schlong for his fantastic Poo stories – old and new!
Hope you all had a good time, if not don’t think your having a refund!
Ring Ding Ding