The 5 M’s Ride                                                                                







Morecambe Mcdonald’s Midsummer Midnight Madness Ride. Yes, here I am two weeks later attempting something that maybe I shouldn’t have! I was told that it could take a long time before I’m better enough to do anything like riding at all. Anyway, here I go; at least it’s in the company of others and It’s NOT an Audax Ride. This one is for the uninitiated is a 130 miler that starts out at Midnight on Saturday  as close as possible to The Midsummer Solstice. A CTC ride that attracts around 25 riders riding out together and possibly coming back on their own and some provisions are provided for some of the way.

At the usual “The Oddfellows Meeting Rooms” in Halifax Town Centre. I had done it before but not under these circumstances. An easy climb up to Illingworth in The Lead Group. At Flappit Springs TRL’s, the lights were just in my favour and I dropped em all on the road down to Keighley and even to Skipton Railway Station; arr. At 01.30. I wanted to see just how good/bad my neck/shoulder would take to it or not. A drunk female in a car with friends kept passing and exclaiming loudly 3 times on the road into/out of Keighley. This is a typical response from night-going Alcoholics, who just don’t seem to want to leave you alone and always have some bad remarks to make!

Ethni, our “Sag-Car” host arr. minutes later, with the rest of the troupe 5-10 mins later. It was a case of Bananas & Biscuits all round and a pee stop for some. Off at 02.00 and I followed the first group out. Now if it wasn’t for the glass on the road just here, that I think I rode over I wouldn’t have gotten a puncture some minutes later & in a bad place to repair it. As it happened, this group of “tigers” took the wrong turn to Grassington and as we were coming back down to rejoin the Kendal road I hit a hole & my tyre suddenly felt grounded and as it was pitch black on this stretch I had to stop and check it out, to confirm it. Now, one guy did notice & offered to help but I was annoyed with myself & declined his help. So now, I had to walk the half mile or so to be able to fix it. There were road lights here but since I had a bad Shingle damaged eye I could not see properly to be able to fix it! So turning my Hope 4-Led light around to shine some light directly onto the tyre in question I was able to effect the tube replacement but still unable to find the cause within the tyre! It was now 02.50 and I had to get a move on to catch Ethni before she drove off at 4.30 from Clapham car park. Arr. at 4.07 but I realised that my neck was rebelling and my arm/shoulder was drooping off of the handlebar & hurt on trying to lift it back on! Everyone had gone on 10 minutes ago,  but word had got to Ethni about my plight. 2 Teas & Rolls with Cheese & I decided to accept the offer of the lift to Macdonalds in Morecambe. The original Cafe had been permanently closed last year. Arr. at 05.20sh. This saved me 25 miles or 40 km and I felt rested & now more confident to go along with the others after we had all eaten here. The riders were all ready for off at 07.00 and Dave Dodwell led us onto a cycle track to bypass the now busy roads into Lancaster centre. Joining up with the long and hilly climbs of Wyresdale Road,  it was our group of nine that made our way to The Jubilee Tower for 08.00sh. It was most definitely the downhills that made my neck ache,  as I felt good on the climbs looking up. Regrouped at the CG at ToB (Trough of Bowland) Summit. At Dunsop Bridge village Hall just after 9.00 but the cafe was closed and would not be open until 11.00.

We were unable to go round from Whitewell as the road works were well under way on the job of repairing the landslip due to The Flood Damage that occurred on Boxing Day. So it was up the very steep Cow Ark road. This was the steepest climb of the ride, but it did cut out 2km on the usual way round. Arr. at the Artesan Cafe in Whalley Abbey where we all enjoyed our cheesecake or cream scones and tea/coffee.

It was now 11.15 and the rest of the group wanted to do the longer easier detour to regain Walk Mill TRL’s. I stuck for the Rose Grove Climb as I was always going back this way and knew it very well and of course the climbing was “just down my street”! Decided to go home first at 1pm, and get a wash & change of clothes. I walked it down to Wetherspoons at Barum Top for 2.30 and met the others eating there. At least I didn’t have my bike to worry about being taken, nor sitting down with sweaty cycle gear on; but now I begun to ache like bugger and so paid the price of my ride last night/today. The total distance involved was of course 127.5 miles or 204 km. I still had done 102.5 miles or 164 km, under duress for parts of the way! I am still seeing The Physio in 2017 since my downfall in June!  Nuff Said.



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