By Terry Holmes
Five of us met at Frogmore Leisure Centre for the latest off-road club ride. Jon Cooke had provided us with a route of around 22 miles taking us up to Caesar’s Camp, the well-known vantage point on Army land near Aldershot.
It wasn’t a good start! I’d broken a golden rule by not doing a thorough bike check prior to the ride, and we’d barely gone 10 yards when I discovered my dropper post cable wasn’t working, making the bike unrideable.
I asked Jon to start the ride with the others while I drove home to get my other MTB, which I knew was working just fine and we agreed to meet up near Fleet Pond.
We rendezvoused with good timing at the Fleet Pond car park and then all rode on.
Three of us were on full suspension bikes, one on a hardtail and Tom braved some slippery single track on his CX Bike. Fair play, he really had his bike handling skills put to the test on some pretty tricky drop-offs at the top of Caesar’s Camp. Jon’s route introduced us to some lovely singletrack there, recently used on the Brass Monkeys XC Enduro race, freshly carved out the previous week.
While we were up on the top of the hill a heavy shower came in quickly, and with the 30 mph winds and little cover we were lashed with hail, firing sideways into us like bullets!
The shower passed as quickly as it had come, giving us a brief and shivering moment to get a quick photo before making the descent back toward Long Valley and on to Fleet Pond where my car awaited. Tom had taken a short cut from the top of the Camp and by the time we reached Fleet Pond car park again, Ed was really feeling the cold so we both returned to Frogmore in my car while Cathy and Jon rode on to complete the route.
Despite the cold, high winds, hail and mud, we all enjoyed the ride (I think!). Great route Jon, and well done all for the ride. Look forward to the next one.
Now……to the business of some serious bike cleaning……..
If you’d like to get involved with off-road club rides, or you’d simply like to find out more, then please get in touch with our off-road secretary Scott Heyhoe at [email protected]