As usual on ride-out day we met at the Redbeck Cafe for a 9am start. The weather was a little dull and was a little cooler than it had been the last couple of days. It was the first ride out that we had led so we were a bit apprehensive to say the least and didn't really want to live up to the Branch's informal nickname of 'The Lost Riders'. We were joined by another 9 bikes and 10 people so we were very pleased with the turn out that showed trust in us. Also as usual Chas donned his 'teddy bear' hat and proceeded to relieve us of our pound coins for the chance to win a fiver back for petrol. Guess who won ???? ME! We were a little late setting off because we got gabbing so it was a 9.20am start.
We made our way through Crofton towards Newmillerdam along Barnsley Road then dropped down into Staincross, Darton and then through the picturesque scenery that led to Cawthorne. After heading towards Silkstone, Penistone and Cubley we then left the main roads to hit the up's and down's of Midhope, Midhopestone and Bradfield. These roads had lots of twists and turns, sharp bends and surprise corners which made for a good ride.
Ooops, we're lost, had to pull in 3 miles up the road because we realised we had missed a right turn so everyone turned and back tracked over the Dam Flask, up Ughill Strines and into Stannington, towards Glossop and over Lady Bower. Caz marked a right hand turn into Thornhill but the last three riders didn't see her and went sailing past, the rest of us went on toward Hope and our final destination of Castleton. We realised something was wrong when Chas, who was back marker and two other bikes pulled in to the carpark and Caz was nowhere to be seen! In true MAG spirit Caz was still marking the right turn to Thornhill not realising that the last three had already gone past the junction and arrived a different way, BLESS HER!
The sun was well and truly out when we arrived so we had a walk around Castleton, some of us headed to the chippy, others had sandwiches and then most of us had an ice cream.
We stayed for over an hour and then headed towards home.
We took a different route home heading through Little and Great Hucklow, Grindlow and Nether Padley, skirted the edge of Hathersage and Ringlow towards Redmires Resevoir, Fullwood and Stannington. Again these roads were steep and shear with lots of twists. We headed towards Sheffield and as people started to recognise where they were, they started to leave the group and head for home.
We got back home with 20 minutes to spare before the heavens delivered a real downpour with added thunder. A really enjoyable day as always in good company, with a special added thanks for the vote of confidence from all involved on our first ride out lead.
Shaz & Tez
'Virgin' Rideout Coordinators