2017-06 June

Rides of the Findon Gentlemen’s Cycling Club in June 2017

Saturday 3rd June 08.00am ride
A relatively short ride due to RT’s time limit.
Up to Chantry post, down the long hill to Leigh Farm, up along the line of trees to the tank, with RT commenting to a passer by that it was a nice area to be enjoying a take-away Costa coffee (not?). Straight return to Findon via SDW and brek at Julia’s.
Total 10.5 miles but a surprising 1000ft climbed.

Friday 9th/Saturday 10th Isle of Wight ride
The FGCC wing (TK & RT) met at Cross Lane and cycled down to Worthing station, meeting RK on the incoming train at 7.56, then joined by ZA (PM) and MA at Angmering. Pt took “breakfast” at Barnham instead of porridge with the inmates at ford as had been his original intention before being advised through the ether by train expert NW that the Portsmouth train might not stop at Ford.
A straight transfer onto the IOW cat at Porsmouth with all anticipating the ride on the 1930’s train at Ryde. However the peloton had to split at Ryde because of the jobsworth on train who would only allow 4 bikes max. The first group had been instructed to take bikes into the front of the front carriage but not to block the driver’s emergency exit (why not put them at the back?), but as the train progressed the regular travellers insisted on climbing over the bikes to the front instead of using the readily available seats in the same carriage (well it is the IOW). The conductor on the second carriage had a much more relaxed view of the regulations.
Having regrouped the peloton set off on the trail, but soon found that we had two navigators in za and pt – tk commented that it was like having wife and mother in law in car. For a while the ancient paper map took precedence.

Onto the Sustrans trail across the island with the traditional group shot at the gates to the ZZZZZ estate:


TK suffered a triple blasteet near Budd manor making it 14 in total for the year – a typical FGCC maintenance session with some helping and some humouring the occasion – while RT & RK effected a repair TK fitted a replacement tube only to find it punctured, but then RT/RK discovered that the just-repaired tube also had another hole in it elsewhere.

Lunch at a refreshed Eight Bells in Carisbrook with the changed management providing an excellent lunch without the traditional grumpiness.

After an unexpectedly large lunch we set of up the Tennyson trail somewhat slowly but helped along by the great views that appeared:


At the top of the first peak PT & MA decided to take the coastal route whilst the reduced peloton trudged on into strong westerly winds ending with a very necessary rest on the bunker of the 9th hole:


Pedalled on down to the memorial which fortunately (in view of the wind) and surprisingly did not need maintenance, regrouping with the others at Freshwater Bay. Then on to Yarmouth for the ferry, the 45 minute delay providing an opportunity for one or two pints of very agreeable Innocence (!) golden bitter.

The long haul to Hordle and the hotel. Having previously phoned ahead to check that we had twin rooms, but the promised message from their HQ had obviously not got through. Nevertheless the most cheerful and helpful young lady (Kayleigh?) soon sorted that problem and organised taxis to the Plough Inn for dinner. However the taxi company let us down and the young lady swiftly commanded her boyfriend to take the stranded gentlemen to their dinner – such service.

At breakfast we were joined by Mrs Avery who had come to collect our Team Aromatherapist, and who suffered yet further repetitions of tales of rides on the IOW, especially the Lost Keys debacle.

The paper map insulted during breakfast and a route through the New Forest via Brockenhurst and then Hythe was selected. We set off to meet JR at Sway, but on descending a relatively short section of track we were suddenly faced with a tree that had fallen across our path completely blocking our way. In scenes reminiscent of Last of the summer wine, some tried to force a way through the tree by breaking back branches (to no avail), ZA studied his paper map to seek an alternative route, some simply commented entertainingly in true FGCC style, whilst PT tried thrashing an alternative route through the adjacent jungle.

Which way to go?

Intrepid explorer Topley persuaded the peloton to fight a way through.

Machete Topley carves a route through the jungle.
The way is cleared for bikes to get through.

After this little bit of excitement we met Mr Roche at Sway as planned. Time spent there led to a discussion on an appropriate measure for faffing, though without conclusion
Met JR at Sway. Discussion on an appropriate unit of measure for faffing, but without conclusion and shortly after that we found ourselves in the forest. However, Mr Kersley soon experienced another blasteet, with the repaired tube itself then suffering another, leading to accusations that the repair team, RK & RT, were not locating the repair patches correctly whilst the accused reckoned that the tyre inspection team (TK & JR) were missing sharp items in the tyre. In the end our team mechanic stepped in to conclude that the cause of the repeated blasteets was down to slipped rim tape and effected a classic FGCC repair with elastoplast tape (pat, pending).

TK’s plastered rim

At last riding in the forest :

GCC peloton riding in the New Forest

Then on to Brockenhurst to acquire new rim tape at the bike store there and take coffees at the Snakecatcher pub (no slow worms there!). Refreshed we continued in a generally easterly direction taking lunch at the Royal Oak just after Beaulieu and then on to Hythe for the ferry to Southampton and trains home. Another jobsworth on the train going on about numbers of bikes.

In an amazing coincidence, who should step into the Findon FGCC contingent at Barnham but Mr & Mrs Wilson with a party of 20 scouts. Mr Wilson suddenly realised that while he had stopped to engage with us his charges had charged on into the next carriage and so he effected a sudden departure.

Total distances 35 miles first day and 18 on the second.

Saturday 17th June 08.00am ride
Whilst an Arundel brek was the choice for most, the Flying Dane wanted to head for Angmering Park Estate “because it would be dry in there” so he took the lead to get us over to the west entrance to APE, intending to finish with a “zvroom” track down to the entrance. Church Hill, Clapham Woods, Clapham, Patching and past the church to the car park and up to the first left track and into the woods. Right turn after about half a mile then shortly after a further right turn to take us up to the junction with the Monarch’s Way and not far north of where we had entered the woods. Along Monarch’s Way in search of the “zvroom” track with comments along the lines of that it must be the tarmac and was the FD ok? “No tarmac” he insisted but tarmac soon appeared to a confused Dane. At the west end of APE we took a sharp right down to the start of the gallops, then left along the valley, with a short stop to inspect the Budd memorial (all fine), then to the Burpham road and over to Arundel for a brek, with the Dane parting company at this point. Return to Findon was along the river which included fighting our way through the reed bed full of nettles, across the Kersley bridge to North Stoke and then back up the SDW and Findon via Muntham.
Total ???

Saturday 24th June 08.00am ride
TK reports:
Messrs Kruger, Topley and Kersley headed out for a ride via gun club to check tank … Still there… Continued on through fields to join the track at wepham down (head of gallops )… Proceeded up Barpham hill to Trig point in search of the Great Dane’s woodland downhill Woosh / Woosh / Woosh … Found thIs and enjoyed a swift and pleasant technical ride to Gibber piece ( former bluebell wood), before returning through patcham woods along Monarch’s Way… Seriously afflicted by horses ( that we always seemed to meet half way down the hills) and by new gates at Tolmare farm . Returned to Findon for breakfast and VT at Julia’s

We all forgot to start sat navs / recording devices but guess that this was around 14 miles

No punctures ! Missed rain that arrived as we entered Julia’s

And PT reports:

My recollection of the 24 June 2017 ride was that:

PT, RK and TK convened at the square promptly, and discussion fell to the propensity of the Flying Dane to seek out new and interesting routes. It was resolved to try and find a stretch of downhill which had on a previous outing eluded him.

We set off via Muntham to the tank, and then continued down through the fields of wheat (not unlike our dear leader Mrs May) where the farmers have kindly cut a 2m wide swathe to mark the bridleway. We then continued south to Wepham Down, and at the crossroads we took the “straight on” option to go over the top of the hill.

Varying slightly west as we entered the top edge of the woods, we were treated to a long downhill stretch through the woodland towards Warningcamp, and this eventually joined up with the tarmac road through AngmeringWoods. We headed east, emerging from the woods to follow the Monarchs Way, via Michelgrove, Myrtle Grove and Tolmare, back to Findon.

I don’t have the mileage/climb with me at the moment.