BIKEmagic’s Magic weekend - Bike Magic

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BIKEmagic’s Magic weekend

If our grasp of the seasons is anything like correct, 21/22 September was the last weekend of the summer. We wondered what BIKEmagic members were doing with it. This is what they told us…

First up is Graham Hansell, who quite justifiably considers a good lunch at least as important as a good ride. His group of six took the train from London to Canterbury (presumably dodging the conductors to get that many bikes on a train…) before riding to Whitstable and Sunday lunch in the Royal Oyster House – “very good for local sea food and good wine,” we’re told. Then a different route back to Canterbury, a brief post-ride sojourn in the pub and back on the train. Very agreeable…

Deepest darkest Peru

Most-travelled picture is undoubtedly this one from Juan Carlos Sala in Lima, Peru. The picture’s from nearby (to him, not to us) Pachacamac which sounds like a small folding waterproof but looks like a splendid spot if a little misty. We’re not sure that it was the last weekend of summer in Peru, but never mind.

Marco Righetti got in touch to tell us about his efforts to beat his own personal best over his regular 26 mile Sunday morning route. He does the same ride every Sunday at 7.45am – “At that time in the morning you rarely see other people, which is good because it means that you don’t need to slow down”. Marco’s 46 years old and 15 stone, but don’t be fooled – his best time for the all off-road route is under two hours…

Craig Furber is currently in the US. He doesn’t appear to have a camera with him, but he describes his weekend loop thusly:

“This weekend I will be riding a big loop, about 10 miles up the Sante Fe trail (wide doubletrack), then link with Mount Herman Road (a 2500ft climb on a rough 4×4 road), then about 12 miles of forest singletrack through the Rampart range, then a 4000ft(ish) descent on Rampart Range Road down to Garden of the Gods and a lift in the car back home from my wonderful wife.”

Roadsign ridiculousness

Dave Wills spent Saturday in the Lakes. “Gorgeous weather, no rain,” he reports. He was checking out some good singletrack around Kentmere, but was somewhat hampered by several broken spokes and his mate’s frame snapped, an occurrence guaranteed to spoil you day…

Also in the Lake District was Phil Nightingale, doing a 35 miler around the central Lakes. He sent us this pic of a curiously-positioned road sign – this track is a mile from the nearest road…

The trails at Glentress in Scotland are well-known for being fantastic fun, and the University of York Bike Club wouldn’t disagree. Rick Chalton’s a member of said club although as he’s currently in Scotland he (and Iain, the other Scottish member) got there an hour and a half before the others who had to drive up from York. They took the opportunity to do a quick lap of the Red Route, cutting out a couple of sections to get back to meet Steve and Tom who Rick endearingly refers to as “southerners”…

“Riding together for the first time since the end of term, we headed out on the Black Route, appreciating the new sections of singletrack, and smiling at the shouts coming up the track as we let the southerners, who didn’t know the trails well, find the drops and berms on their own. The weather was fantastic, the trails dusty enough to slide the bike easily round hairpin turns, and good enough to warrant ANOTHER lap of the Red Route to fill up the southerners with enough singletrack happiness to last them for… Ooh, about the time it takes them to get back here again…”

Look! There’s three of him!

David Arthur sampled the delights of the south west, riding at Woodbury Common on Saturday and Haldon Forest on the Sunday. Having ridden at Woodbury dozens of times ourselves we know how much fun it can be. “Excellent weather both days, enough to be able to wear just a t-shirt (as well as shorts/shoes etc!).” reports Dave.

At entirely the opposite end of the country, Mark Trinder and friends did “a fantastic loop on the eastern edge of the Cairngorms, starting and finishing near Ballater. a mixture of rarely used Land Rover track and singletrack, and not another soul seen all day. only one really big climb, but some fantastic descents (top speed of the day 31.2mph) and a couple of high speed but not too serious offs! the weather was fair to middling – a couple of brief drizzly showers and spells of sunshine, all accompanied by a cool breeze.”

Sounds good to us, sounds like we’ll have to check the area out soon. Then again, it’s winter soon. Perhaps we’ll wait until spring…


From Jim Barrow we have this shot of Cwmcarn – “what a great place!” he raves, quite rightly – although this weekend he and his riding buddies were actually riding the South Downs Way from Worthing out to Bignor and back.

Big South Downs skies

We’re wondering if he spotted BIKEmagic’s own Cullen Ward, who was also riding out from Petersfield on what he describes as “an easy 40 miler along the South Downs Way”, the main difficulty being a dispute with a horse rider whose horse Cullen accused of actually being a zebra. The other highlight of the ride was a spectacularly large steak at lunchtime. “Bigger than a small cow” apparently, which is a good trick.

“Quick, bring the chocolate!”

Duncan Harwood marked the last day of summer with a solo atteck of a route around Nidderdale in the Yorkshire Dales. He “could have done with some company to share the pain, but fantastic all the same”, we’re told.

Duncan’s ride was 22 miles containing “mind boggling hill climbs, steep downhills over boulders the size of footballs – hair raising stuff…” Sounds like the weather wasn’t quite as kind to Duncan, though: “A bit of driving rain across the moor tops and some boggy tracks and it all about polished me off!”

Sounds like Duncan was in about as good shape as this chap, a riding colleague of forum regular Ancient Mariner, who was quite possibly trying a little too hard on their ride around the Chilterns…

A future champion?

And finally, a slightly less dramatic expedition but noteworthy nonetheless. Bev Longsden headed out to Sutton Park with her niece and brother. They only did eleven miles but then niece Kirsty’s only seven so we reckon that’s a pretty good effort. Bev expects great things of Kirsty, although Kirsty doesn’t sound convinced: “I told her she’s gonna be the next downhill champion of the world,” says Bev, “and she glared at me and gave the typical response of a 7-year old – ‘WHY?'”

That’s about it for this weekend’s riding. Thanks to everyone who sent stuff in. There’s no need to wait for us to ask, though – if you’ve done a spectacular or otherwise noteworthy ride and have pictures, tell us all about it. You can submit an article here and either upload the pictures somewhere and include the URL in your article or just email ’em to [email protected].


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