Sunday morning brought forth good weather and a promise of a nice ride across Strines and Ladybower and through the Hope Valley and onwards to Matlock Bath. Oh yes, by way of Penistone.
Sixteen of us gathered at the Grey Horse on 12 bikes, with Ed in attendance to take the obligatory team photos. Great to welcome along Steve and Jacqui on their Triumph Rocket III, for their inaugural Wakefield MAG rideout. They had seen the event advertised on the Wakefield MAG web site, fancied going to Matlock Bath so turned up on spec to join in the fun. Lorna did a sterling job getting some early morning brews going in the Grey Horse kitchen but Daz wasn’t too impressed with the Green Tea on offer, and was very concerned about the health benefits he would get from the odd sip he had, before he eloquently stated that it wasn’t for him !
So just after 10:00 we trundled off up through Denby Dale, picking up the A629 before turning of to Penistone and the much awaited and challenging ride across Strines. Now Penistone has certainly changed since the last time I rode through the town, so I was delighted that Lorna showed us the new supermarket before doubling back and continuing on our route.
Getting into the green stuff we soon hit the Stockbridge By-Pass but in true Lost Riders fashion, pulled in at the next lay-by to confirm we’d missed the Strines junction. However, we decided we could turn off at Deepcar and pick Strines up again via Bolderstone. So, keeping the theme going, we rode straight past the Deepcar turn off and arrived at the McDonald’s roundabout just down from where a couple of the rideout participants work – the last place they needed to see on their day off !!!
So, off we trotted down the A61 so we could enjoy Sheffield in spring time and duly hit traffic after Hillsborough. No, not the football crowds but Sunday shoppers off to Morrison’s for their Sunday morning fix of walking around aimlessly. By this time the sun was cracking flags and the engines were heating up nicely and fans working overtime for the water cooled amongst us.
Up over Hoyle St we took the back roads to Eccleshall Rd, which would have allowed us to escape the Sheffield metropolis and head out via Dore, Hathersage and cross country to ‘Bath’. So we weren’t pleased to find that Eccleshall Rd south(ish) bound was blocked by South Yorkshires finest, probably due to one of those incidents that seem to occur these days - never seemed to have them when we were kids.
So, it was turning out to be a true Lost Riders day out but we eventually got out of Sheffield and gladly stopped at Calver for a much needed break, brew and stretch.
After that it was plain sailing to Matlock Bath and more grid lock, mainly cars, so some careful filtering was required or we would have been in for more delays of Hillsborough Morrison’s proportions. Lorna sensibly pulled off the main drag into the station car park, which we circumnavigated before eventually pulling up on some private land belonging to Derbyshire Wildlife Trust (DWT).
These activities were promptly followed by the local resident coming out of his garden and we thought 'here we go' but the old boy was sweet talked by Daz (truly) and said we were OK as long as we made sure the exit was cleared. In the meantime every bike that subsequently hit the car park headed for our patch ! So for the inconvenience, we said we would donate £20 out of branch funds for the DWT as a way of saying Thank You.
With us safely arrived at our destination, it was the time for a meander along the prom (lets face it, Matlock Bath does resemble a Victorian coastal town), take in the multitude of bikes that were parked up and some much needed grub.
And we are pleased to report the Matlock Bath fish and chips were certainly up to Whitby standards, and not a seagull in sight.
Mid ‘afternoon’ we set out on the return leg and this time managed to follow the planned route in reverse but hit a few snarl ups, as every man and his dog was leaving the Peak District. So we pootled back to Hathersage, down towards Hope and up through Bamford to Ladybower, where Chas made an impromptu stop so Daz could get his ‘seaside fix’ at the reservoir.
So after another fag break, it was up the A57, then across Strines (fantastic road !!!), then a bit of hairy crossing of the Stocksbridge by-pass (nasty road !!!!) and straight through Penistone and back home before sunset.
All in all, a good time was had by all, and a huge Thank You to Lorna for leading the ride-out (and for maintaining our Lost Riders reputation, with such style !!!!!).