The first off-road club ride of the winter took place last Saturday, 10 November. Riders reported it as a great success. Scott Heyhoe was unfortunately ill and unable to ride on the day, but the club has no shortage of superstars, and Tony Garmston kindly stepped in to lead the route around North Hampshire. As advertised, it was a fine route through some beautiful countryside, made even more interesting by a few steep tracks with limited traction, and some slippery corners.
Seven club members headed out from Fleet along the canal to Greywell Tunnel – an easy start to the ride, conveying the riders to where the fun began in earnest. A combination of tracks and lanes took them up to near Golden Pot, the highest point of the ride. Down “Holybourne Hill”, the site of the recent Club Hill Climb Championship, only to turn back up the hill, to try the ascent of the same ridge, but on a very slippery, grass and mud path. A mix of tracks and lanes, with some swooping descents had the riders rejoining the canal for the final couple of miles. Everyone seems to have had a thoroughly enjoyable morning out, and there has been much talk of looking forward to the next one. Some used mountain bikes, and others CX bikes. The CX bikes struggled on a couple of steep climbs, not helped by the recent rain making things very slippery, and some wished they had lower gearing. We’ll bear this in mind when planning the next ride – thanks for the feedback!
We’re hoping to make this a regular event, perhaps monthly, so keep an eye on the website news and on Facebook for details of the next off-road ride. We hope to see even more members next time.