Weston Chain Gang

Welcome to the Weston Chain Gang forum. We are a group of cyclists that ride regularly from Weston-super-Mare. We meet at Priory school on Saturday at 8:45. Rides vary in distance between 60 and 100 miles with a stop for cake. Ridet nec genere!


    Saturday 4th March - on the trail of the lonesome pines

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    anti-climb max

    Posts : 544
    Join date : 2012-07-05
    Age : 104
    Location : location location, homes under the hammer, flog it

    Saturday 4th March - on the trail of the lonesome pines

    Post  anti-climb max on Thu Mar 02, 2017 5:11 pm

    It's been a while since we scaled the quantock peaks. So let's go and cheer up the good people at pines cafe.

    Route out will the now too familiar sea front, anchor, Jeannie's bogs and we'll follow this up with the now too familiar woolly hill (though this week we might actually go up it.)

    Tri- curious can cut off to cannington.

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    showmethecakes

    Posts : 320
    Join date : 2012-07-01
    Age : 104
    Location : Weston-super-Mare

    Better late than never

    Post  showmethecakes on Sun Mar 05, 2017 5:43 pm

    Great turn out again with about 25 riders heading for the hills.

    Forecast was for dry and bright weather and early on it did not disappoint. Still a stiff south-westerly to contend with but with a large bunch it allowed everyone some respite from the wind. Ivan had indicated Pines as the likely destination but Lofty and I had discussed the idea of adding on a little extra loop via Dead Woman's Ditch, Crowcombe and Cothelstone. Not really wanting to slog it out by ourselves I attempted to drum up support among the riders. First port of call was Neil who always seems keen on a hard ride. Answer - 'no'. Not to worry, I'll try Andy C. 'No chance mate'! Jeannie is always training for something and a few hills can't do any harm. "Where are you going?" Mmm, sounds promising methinks - "Down Crowcombe". Answer - "No - I hate that descent". Things are now so desperate I turn to Pants on Fire Jeremiah. "50/50 at the moment". Aha, at last, someone who will come with us. 5 minutes later and it's a 'no' as well.

    Thinking I might now abort on this idea and hide in the bunch to Pines Ivan then announces to the whole group that Lofty and I are doing the extra loop and anyone else is free to join us. B******s! Can't get away with it now. I then frantically negotiated with Ivan that the group would wait for us at Pines so we can ride back together.

    It was business as usual at Wooly Hill with everyone staying about 50 metres behind me as I ambled up the hill. Only R2 sat behind but I'll forgive him as it made it look like I was at least putting some effort in. No sacrificial horses this week. As we approached Bawdrip Martin remembered the downhill segment we were discussing only the week before. He took off like a greyhound smeared with Colmans English down the main road. I wasn't going to let him get away with that and duly followed. Glad to see that the GPS gods were on my side for once giving me a better time than Martin despite me following him all the way down.

    After Bridger the group split with most, okay nearly all, okay everyone except me and Lofty going to Pines. We plodded on round to Over Stowey and then hit the ramp up. Lofty almost went backwards on the cattle grid and I bounced around like a kangaroo on a trampoline. Not to worry we survived the first onslaught. Just as the gradient eased up a small black terrier leaped from the bushes onto the road and chased Lofty. Fortunately, just as it got within striking distance a car came the other way and almost flattened it. After a brief pause at the top we plummeted down Crowcombe and slogged it out along the main road into the headwind to Cothelstone. Now I've only been up Cothelstone once before and I thought it was okay. I'd told Lofty it was easier than Dead Woman's Ditch as it was a steadier gradient. Well, it was to start with but I reckon I must still have been suffering post traumatic stress from the previous ascent as I certainly didn't remember the road bending upwards like a ripe banana.

    I was seriously struggling and actually thought about holding on to the barrier for a minute to catch my breath but determination won the day and I wobbled up and over the top. Lofty was about 200 metres behind as I zoomed off to Pines for a nice piece of cake and a coffee. True to his word Ivan had waited with the group. That is to say they were waiting outside the cafe astride their bikes ready to set off for home. Dilemma time. Do we stay for coffee and ride home alone or just carry on. After a few seconds of discussion Lofty and I decided to ride straight through and head for home with the others.

    Halfway down Enmore there was the fantastic sound of pop and hiss. At 35 mph it's not the most comforting sound to hear but Ade successfully brought his bike to a standstill and started to fix his puncture. Despite standing at the side of the road with a wheel off some riders still managed to bomb past all the way to the reservoir before asking where Ade was!

    After a short delay we set off into Bridger. Just as we hit the roadworks in the centre there was another pop and a hiss. A second flat for Ade. A new tube and 10 minutes later we set off again. Within 200 metres there was another pop and a hiss. A third flat for Ade. You can imagine how happy Ade was by this time. So much so he called his wife to tell her and arrange a rendez-vous in Bridger to celebrate.

    Ivan and Jeannie had already cleared off up the A38 after the second puncture and were probably home by now. Nonetheless we took it easy from Bridger to Brent Knoll covering the distance in about 19 minutes! Just as well we kept the speed to about 26 mph average or my legs might have dropped off.

    We met up with Ivan and Jeannie at BK and briefly stopped for munchies as Lofty was getting short on energy. We then ploughed on into Weston before parting company and heading for home.

    A great day out but please can some overweight 90 year old come with us to Dead Woman's Ditch next time so I don't feel quite so inadequate.

      Current date/time is Mon Sep 25, 2017 9:42 pm