South Dartmoor CTC Album


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Sunday 19 January 1986
Day ride (With Torbay CTC): Blacksalde Down
6 Participants: Gabrielle Bourn (Adult, Ashburton), Michael Jones, Paul Palmer, Luke Rake, Mark Stott, Simon Whale
A strong south-westerly wind made the journey to the Bickington pick-up virtually effortless (for those who had not been put off by earlier spells of rain). The Torbay group, however, were not at all amused by it and needed rest before tackling the hill towards Sigford.

The real fun began at Bagtor House when Luke noticed he had a puncture. Everyone watched the repair with smug contentment until first Andrew, then Glenn and finally Super Shopper realised that they, too, had punctures. A little further down the road Super Shopper bit the dust again with punctures in front and rear wheels. By the time the group had arrived at Halshanger both Simon Whale and Super Shopper had acquired further punctures, so lunch was taken in what appeared to be a warm, sheltered glade halfway up the hill. Unfortunately it proved to be neither sheltered nor warm, so the picnic was not an extended affair.

It was not difficult to understand how Cold East Cross came by its name as the group fought their way through the bitter force nine winds and painful sleet showers that swept the surrounding area. There was opportunity to shelter, however, at Pudsham Down (actually quite close the planned destination) before saying farewell to the ponies and setting off for the lower reaches of the moor near Buckland and Spitchwick.

Here at last was sunshine and tranquillity – almost a different world. The sight of canoeists shooting the rapids of the Dart at New Bridge would not have been nearly so absorbing had one poor lad not capsized, leaving other members of his club to rescue his canoe and oar which had set off in two different directions.

Hot refreshments, a log fire and videos at Redmount concluded another interesting winter ride.
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