I received an email from Steve Pighills at the Cumbria TRF about 2 weeks ago saying there was a Rideout planned Saturday 8th August, great stuff, I was free but Lucy was working so with a meet up planned just north of Kendal at 9am, the day arrived... Bike sorted and 9 of us turned up to the car park. Great stuff.
There was a very eclectic range of bikes in the group, from the posh 2014 KTM Freeride 350 and the 2015 AJP 200 through to the old Honda steve rode and the DT175 two stroke, on the whole the majority of the bikes were older and had been well used. My good old battered DR attracted some positive comments which was nice to hear.
Dry Lane was our first lane, nice and steady before launching up Breast High Pass with the required struggling and grunting as various people found the lane pretty stiff, the crossing was easy as the water was low, but there were more cobbles on both the uphill and the downhill, which required a lot of concentration and effort!
Mike, a lad from Brampton on an 02 or 03 KTM 250 EXCF, was new to the whole trail riding thing and found both Breast High and the next lane pretty tough, he had a fair ole sweat on by the time we got back to Tarmac!! But was still smiling and ready for the next bit...
We headed over towards Kirkby Stephen in a roundabout loop, taking in loads of little lanes, some with some really good river crossings, (which apparently get very high in winter, that should be good fun to do then)... Most of the lanes were very little used and took us over fells and across moorland, none of it difficult, but given the perfect weather and views it was an ideal day out for a group of people who for the most part had not met before.
|Very slippy river crossing|
Plenty of chat throughout the day saw history lessons about what the lanes were used for in the past, what the current issues are with access etc and also lots of banter about personal riding skills, which is one of the great things about riding with a few people at a time.
I really enjoyed the day, the company was relaxed and pleasant, the weather and lanes superb and I got to ride a whole bunch of lanes I'd not ridden before. Great stuff...
Cumbria TRF have just sorted email addresses into a list so that rides can organised and communicated more easily, so I'm hoping to see more of these and hopefully to lead a ride or two in the North Lakes area or across into Northumberland etc.
|Fish n chips from the Coast to Coast chippy... fab!|
|The Eden Valley rock, or the 'coffee bean' as I call it!|
Whatever your thoughts on clubs, groups, types of riders etc, there is no doubt that increasing the levels of communication between local riders is a good thing, it's also a key way to getting the knowledge of the lanes passed on and a very important way to both monitor and help to maintain the very good relations that trail riders have with the Lake District National Park currently in Cumbria. If you ride the lanes in any part of the country you are an ambassador for all of us so pass on that love and enthusiasm to all around you, it's aMazing what comes back...
Another Lakes ride coming up next week, then the trip to Wales, ace stuff, can't wait!!!