Ten of us on seven bikes assembled at the Redbeck Cafe at 8:30 for this years Wakefield MAG Treasure Hunt. Great to welcome along Andy and Sara who had stayed at the Rebeck overnight as they live in the East Riding these days, and didn't fancy getting up at 6am on a Sunday morning.
Breakfast first then time to get our clues and route directions from Lorna, who had organised the Treasure Hunt with her family.
This year, no maps were required and all the directions were in easy(ish) to follow written instructions. It wasn't a race and points were given for the number of correct answers, route / mileage and time elapsed. First to set off were the Scott's and Greenwood team, four of them on three bikes.
Next were El Presidente Steve, Justine, Mick and his mate, again on three bikes.
And then Andy and Sara on two bikes.
The route started straight out of the Redbeck Motel Car Park, Right onto the A638, then a right at the cross roads next to the Cock and Crown Inn onto Cow Lane, left at a mini roundabout, straight on through Crofton village, straight on a mini roundabout and to our first question:
Q1. Goose and what? ... It was 'Cowslip'
We then followed the road to the right at The Slipper Inn, Straight on, Right at a T junction, then a left at the next T junction, next right, a right at a cross roads then a left onto Smawell Lane, with the warning 'ROUGH ROAD ... TAKE CARE'. It was (rough), and we did. Interesting little used route though.
The second question was what colour is the height restriction gate? ... it was Yellow.
Our route directions then told us to turn right at a T junction, Right onto Woolley Mill Lane, Right at the A61 main road, next left, then a left onto Parson Lane (with another 'TAKE CARE' warning, right at a T junction, left at a cross roads, right at a cross roads, then the next left for question number 3:
What is the name of the road you have turned onto? .... It was Low Moor Lane
The route then sent us left at a T junction, straight on at a cross roads, right at the next cross roads, a right at the roundabout onto the A637 then immediately left towards High Hoyland (Jebb Lane), then a left at the T junction and question number 4:
How many miles to Wakefield? ... It was 8 at this point.
Left at the T junction (with another warning of it being 'TIGHT'), right at a staggered cross roads (Canthorn Lane), left at the T junction and question 5:
What is the name of the pub on our left? ... It was the Spencer Arms
Right at the OBELISK (milestone), Straight on at a X roads (A635), right onto Norcroft Lane, left at the T junction onto the A635 main road, an immediate left onto South Lane then a right onto Cross Lane and quuestion 6:
Who protects the school? ... It was Doyle Security
Right at the T junction, right at the A635 main road, a left with a narrow bridge and a break point at the Cannon Hall Garden Centre Cafe. First team here were the Scott's and Greenwood team, who had virtually finished their cups of tea by the time El Presidente Steve et al rocked up, and Andy and Sara turned up as they too were finishing their cuppas. So, no one hideouly lost at the half way point.
Continuing on our route, we were instructed to take a left at the T junction, second left, left at a T junction, right at a T junction, next right (with a 'TAKE CARE' caveat), left at a T junction, left at a T junction onto the A635 main road, right at a X roads (to Upper Denby), right at a Church, right at a T junction onto the A629 main road, straight on at the A635 and question 7:
What brand of convenience store is at the petrol station? ... This was a Co-op.
First right after the petrol station (Carr Lane), right after the railway bridge (Longmoor Lane), the left at the next two T junctions and question 8:
What is the name of the garden centre? ... Armitage Pennie
Now a Right, left after the Emley Moor mast viewing point (Westfield Lane), with the caveat 'TIGHT LEFT', and question 9:
What is the name of the farm shop? ... Thorncliff
A right at the X roads, right at a T junction onto the A637 main road and question 10:
What is the name of the pub on the left? ... It was the George and Dragon
We were now instructed to take a left onto Hardcastle Lane, a very sharp left after the Reindeer Inn, a right at the T junction onto the A642 main road, and question 11:
What is the attraction on the left? ... It was the National Coal Mining Museum (NCM), based at the old Caphouse Colliery.
Our route continued with a right after the railway arch, left at a mini roundabout, straight on at the next junction (Blacker Lane) and question 12:
What is the height on the railway bridge? ... 11ft
Left at the T junction, right at the next T junction and question 13:
What are the Cats on the left? ... Well, it being the RedCats warehouse and offices, the answer had to be Red
Straight on at a mini roundabout, left at a T junction, right turn (Hilltop Road), left at a X roads, right (Walton Station Lane), left at the T junction, next right, then a left at a mini roundabout and question 14:
What is the monument? ... It was a Cenotaph
Left at the next T junction, left at a mini roundabout, left at a T junction and the final question to be answered:
What is the name of the house on the right? ... It was Toll House.
From the site of question 15, it was a half mile ride back to the finish at the Redbeck Motel Carpark!!!!
Team El Presidente were the first team back, followed by the Scott's and Greenwood team five minutes later, and arriving last of all, Andy and Sara.
However ..... the final results weren't in that order. A couple of missed turnings and a spectacular off-route venture into the Centre of Barnsley by Team El Presidente, meant that although they arrived five minutes ahead of the Scott's and Greenwood team, they had done ten miles more, so it put them into second place. And despite arriving last, Andy and Sara were joint second with Team El Presidente, as they too had managed less mileage.
We all agreed though it had been a brilliant route, taken us through some lovely countryside and villages, along lots of roads we had never travelled before, and taken in just about every severe left and right turn junctions there must be in West and South Yorkshire (on some of those, cars had to do 3 point turns to get round them). A thoroughly enjoyable rideout though, and to top it all ... it didn't rain and was warm and sunny all day ... Hurrah !!!!
A huge thanks to Lorna and her family for organising a cracking Treasure Hunt, and a huge thanks to everyone who came along and made it such a memorable and enjoyable day.