South Dartmoor CTC

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Friday 17 May 2013
1900-2100
Evening ride: River Dart Country Park (9 mi)Cloudy start, patchy rain later
3 present: Ash Freeman, Michael Jones, Will Rogers
Ash Freeman (20:28)
Ash rides the log pile on the Holne Woods track (20:28)
On a cloudy and rather damp evening we rode along the old Ashburton road to River Dart Country Park and had a bit of fun on the snake slide. We then followed the track up through Holne Woods, Ash stopping near the top to ride along a stack of felled tree trunks. We returned home via Hembury for around 9pm and played Zombies and Modern Warfare 3 until 10pm.

Sunday 19 May 2013
1015-1235
Morning ride: Ashburton Tracks (11 mi)Dry
4 present: Ash Freeman, Michael Jones, George Rogers, Alastair Shapland
Today we took the old road to Ashburton, lanes out to Belford Mill and then the woodland track back towards the town. By way of change we explored a new path that continues on the other side of the road into the town, running parallel to the Terrace Walk: it was OK, but a bit rough in places and boggy in the middle near the gate.

Next stop was Ashburton Park which provided great opportunities for Frisbee and tennis ball fun. It also seemed to offer fun to a passing dog who chased after Ash’s tennis ball and ran off with it.

We got back to Buckfastleigh for around 12.35 and played computer games until 2.30.

Friday 24 May 2013
1900-2200
Evening ride: Converted to SocialSunny but cold and windy
5 present: Ash Freeman, Michael Jones, George Rogers, John Rogers, Will Rogers
A shower just before the start of the ride was enough to persuade the youngsters that a badminton social was in order, so we played at Ashmoor from 7.35 until 8.35 and then returned for computer games.

Sunday 26 May 2013
1015-1330
Morning ride: Holne (10 mi)Sunny
7 present: Lawrence Buttress, Ash Freeman, Rowan Hopper (1, UK), Simon Hopper, Michael Jones, John Rogers, Will Rogers
John, Will, Ash, Simon, Rowan and Lawrence in Holne Play Park (11:59)
We were very pleased to welcome one of our regular members from the 1980s and 1990s today, Simon Hopper, who was in the area with his 18-month son Rowan. We rode to Holne play park via Buckfast and Michelcombe and spent an enjoyable time there playing Frisbee in the sun. Meanwhile Simon helped Rowan to use some of the play equipment.

A visit to the café was essential today, and we ended up enjoying drinks and teacakes on the tables outside. After an interesting chat about Simon’s various activities we returned to Buckfastleigh via Hembury: Ash rode the Slalom in a record time of 2:32 while the rest of us did the road alternative in 1:32.

We got back at 1.30 and played games at Crofters after the ride.

Today's ride included a total climb of 292m.

Friday 31 May 2013
1900-2100
Evening ride: Higher Penn Track (7 mi)Sunny and warm
4 present: Ash Freeman, Michael Jones, George Rogers, Will Rogers
Will and George on the first section of the path from Higher Penn Farm (20:15)
We had a great ride this evening in the warm sunshine, up Green Lane to Baddaford farm and then down the track through the woods from Higher Penn to Lower Combe and High Beara. Both Will and George were chattier than usual, making it a very enjoyable ride. We got back at 9pm and played some Supreme Commander by popular request.

Sunday 2 June 2013
1015-1330
Morning ride: Avon DamSunny start, cloudy later
5 present: Ash Freeman, Michael Jones, John Rogers, Will Rogers, Sam Swift (13, Totnes)
The Avon Reservoir (12:15)
Ash, Will, Sam and John by the Avon Reservoir (12:14)
The Avon Dam (12:15)
New member Sam was surprisingly fast as we rode up to Shipley Bridge on a very sunny morning. Will had to go back to look for one of his gloves soon after we left, but we finally reached the dam by 12.10 and enjoyed a short break on the banks of the reservoir.

With cloud increasing we continued into the open moor in search of the Abbots Way bridleway, rode to the top of the hill and then headed down across the moors towards Cross Furzes. Everyone thoroughly enjoyed the magnificent views across South Devon and the exciting descent. Unfortunately Will decided to try riding through the ford near Cross Furzes and ended up getting both feet wet, which left him so annoyed that we had to leave him with John to join us later at Crofters.

There was the usual social after the ride until 2.30.

Friday 7 June 2013
1900-2200
Evening ride: Converted to SocialSunny and warm
4 present: Lawrence Buttress, Ash Freeman, Michael Jones, Will Rogers
Will did not want to cycle this evening and whilst Lawrence was OK with doing a ride Michael and Ash decided to go with Will’s wishes for various reasons. We drove to Paignton leisure centre for squash, which worked out really well. Michael taught Lawrence the basics of play in the first quarter of an hour, then Will, and we all ended up having some good play in our 45-minute session.

Returning to Buckfastleigh Modern Warfare 3 would not work this evening for some reason so the youngsters played on the trampoline until the 10pm closing time.

Sunday 9 June 2013
1015-1155
Morning ride: Hembury FortDry
3 present: Lawrence Buttress, Ash Freeman, Michael Jones
Ash had revision to do during the afternoon so we arranged a fairly short ride that explored many of the tracks in Hembury Woods. This started with a brisk ride to the top of Hembury Hill, took us around the fort moat, along a new path, down the slalom and then onto another new path. It was all good fun.

We got home for around 11.55 as agreed and had a one hour social of games and trampoline.

Friday 14 June 2013
1900-2200
Evening ride: Converted to SocialHeavy rain
7 present: Lawrence Buttress, Ash Freeman, Michael Jones, George Rogers, John Rogers, Will Rogers, Sam Swift
With heavy rain forecast all evening we started the evening with computer games and then drove to Ashmoor leisure centre for some very enjoyable badminton games on three courts.

Sunday 16 June 2013
1015-1210
Morning ride: Converted to SocialRaining
3 present: Lawrence Buttress, Ash Freeman, Michael Jones
Rain stopped play again today, so we organised a games social for the morning at Crofters until around 12.15 when Ash needed to get on with revision.

Friday 21 June 2013
1900-2200
Evening ride: Cancelled
0 present:
Michael was away buying a car today so unfortunately the ride had to be cancelled.

Sunday 23 June 2013
1015-1415
Morning ride: Converted to SocialShowers
4 present: Lawrence Buttress, Ash Freeman, Michael Jones, Alastair Shapland
The forecast was for showers all morning, so when Lawrence and Alastair arrived Lawrence had already decided that he would like to do squash again today. Alastair quickly decided he would like to do that as well, as he had never played squash before, so we drove to Ivybridge in Michael’s new Volvo C30 which the boys liked a lot.

First Michael played Lawrence and Ash played Alastair, then Michael played Alastair and Ash played Lawrence. Finally Ash and Michael played each other for the last five minutes. Our games lasted from 11.20 to 12.10 after which we played games at Crofters until 2.15.

Friday 28 June 2013
1900-2200
Evening ride: Converted to SocialDry
3 present: Lawrence Buttress, Ash Freeman, Michael Jones
For some reason Lawrence arrived with the intention of playing and grand game of Lord of the Rings this evening, and since there was nobody else to out-vote him that is what we did. Ash had to pop out for a while at 7.30 but he returned for 8.50 to finish off the evening with us.

Sunday 30 June 2013
1015-1300
Morning ride: Converted to SocialDry
2 present: Michael Jones, Alastair Shapland
This was a disappointing morning because Alastair and Michael ended up spending most of the morning waiting for Ash to arrive as he said he was coming but would be late. By the time he finally arrived we had spent the whole morning playing games so there was no time for a ride.

Either Ash will have to become more reliable in future or we will simply have to leave without him if does not arrive on time.

Friday 5 July 2013
1900-2200
Evening ride: Cancelled
0 present:
Michael and Ash were away this evening at the London Film and Comic Con so the ride was cancelled.

Sunday 7 July 2013
1015-1300
Morning ride: Cancelled
0 present:
Michael and Ash were away this evening at the London Film and Comic Con so the ride was cancelled.

Friday 12 July 2013
1900-2200
Evening ride: Converted to SocialHot and sunny
6 present: Lawrence Buttress, Ash Freeman, Michael Jones, George Rogers, John Rogers, Will Rogers
There was no enthusiasm for a cycle ride this evening so we did a badminton session at Ashmoor from 8pm until 9pm with games at Crofters either side. It turned out to be a very enjoyable evening for all concerned.

Sunday 14 July 2013
1015-1420
Morning ride (Car-assisted): Haldon Forest ParkVery hot and sunny
5 present: Lawrence Buttress, Ash Freeman, Michael Jones, John Rogers, Will Rogers
On another very hot and sunny day we decided that an amble around Haldon Forest Park shouldn’t make us overheat too much. John got all five bikes into his van and the other passengers went in Michael’s C30, and we arrived at the park at around 10.55.

First we rode the Blue track, called the Challenge Trail, supposedly of medium difficulty. Racing ahead of the group as we left a woodland area Ash failed to notice a tiny stone bridge as it was concealed by undergrowth. He went into the gully at high speed, was thrown over the handlebars and ended up with cuts and bruises on his right arm. Fortunately it was not too serious and he was able to continue with the ride.

The riding had been rather hot so when we got back at 12.45 we had drinks, soups and other refreshments at the café until 1.30 and then rode the easy Green track which took around fifteen minutes. We then went home for around 2.20 and had a games social after the ride until 3.30.

Friday 19 July 2013
1900-2200
Evening ride: CancelledVery hot and sunny
0 present:
With Michael and Ash away in Cornwall for a few days today's ride had to be cancelled.

Sunday 21 July 2013
1015-1510
Day ride: Widecombe-in-the-Moor (21 mi)Hot and sunny (24°)
5 present: Lawrence Buttress, Ash Freeman, Michael Jones, John Rogers, Will Rogers
Lawrence, Will and Ash at Bonehill Rocks (12:33)
Climbing the rocks at Bonehill (12:32)
The Natsworthy track (12:49)
Today was thankfully a little cooler than recent days, but it was still hot at 24 degrees. We had planned a Dartmoor ride to Bonehill and everyone was up for it, so we took the old road to Ashburton and made good speed up Ausewell hill. When we got to Bonehill Ash entertained us by climbing what seemed to be a share rock face with his bare hands.

We followed the rough track to Natsworthy and then the lane down to Widecombe where we called in to the Wayside Café for refreshments. We chose it because there was a long queue at The Green café, but we ended up waiting just as long at the Wayside because of the slow waitress service. The food was OK though and the prices were reasonable so we didn’t complain.

We left Widecombe at around 1.40 and headed home at high speed via Leusdon. Michael at least was pleased to see that his favourite white ducks were back on the pond just below Leusdon. Spitchwick was stupidly busy today with police putting parking tickets on the many cars that had parked on the yellow lines – we had never seen parking officers there before, so the place must be getting more popular on hot summer days.

We finally returned home via Hembury Woods for around 3.10. Lawrence needed to get back but Will stayed for games until 3.45.

Today's ride involved a total climb of 626m.

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