RR - Kendal - Witherslack

Discussion in 'Mountain Bikes' started by Twohat, May 29, 2003.

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  1. Twohat

    Twohat Guest

    This is my first go at posting a ride report, so please let me know if it is crap (just go easy
    though ;-)

    Set off about 8:00 p.m. last night, a few miles of road before taking to a byway at the top of
    Heversham Head. I've lived round here for years and didn't know it existed until we spotted it on
    the map. Very narrow, very overgrown, but twisty and great fun. First 100 yds or so getting stung on
    legs, arms, and knuckles from nettles, and ducking under hawthorn branches and brambles. Downhill
    most of the way, tree roots, mud, the occasional rockfall from a wall lurking in the undergrowth,
    and dark from the overhanging trees. A bit ridged and rutty too, from previous users. Strong smell
    from the wild garlic growing in the bottom of the hedge. Great fun and a real rush for about a mile
    until we emerge onto the A6 opposite Levens Hall. A quick bit of road takes us up through Levens
    Village and down across the Lyth Valley to Gilpin Bridge. Up the Lyth Valley road for a few hundred
    yards and left onto a farm track which dog-legs us past the main road and onto a bridleway which
    climbs across the bottom of Whitbarrow Scar. This is another one which I've never been on before,
    and I can't help thinking as we climb steadily through the trees for about a mile that we are doing
    it the wrong way round. Not too steep, but lots of tree roots carpeted in last year's larch needles
    makes it tricky and hard work. The pay back comes the other side though, with a long downhill to
    Beck Head. Similar to what we have just gone up but with superb views across the Kent estuary to
    Sandside and beyond. Got to concentrate though, dark under the trees with a few obstacles lurking.
    From Beck Head we turn right onto another bridleway, flattish, rutted twin track which leads us onto
    the road up to Witherslack Hall School. Great views across the valley to the back of Whitbarrow
    Scar. Opposite the school we turn left onto another bridleway climbing steadily up towards the top
    of Yewbarrow. This time it is a mixture of mud which has been conditioned by horses, and polished
    limestone. The mud pushes the bike all over the place, and the limestone gives very little grip at
    all. Great fun picking the right line. Once over the top the downhill looks like more of the same,
    but through the woods, tree roots (I don't really like tree roots!), sticking-up lumps of rock,
    (don't look at the rocks, or you will hit them) the odd tree stump, and occasionally a steep drop to
    the right of the trail, scary with the trail cambered towards it. About half a mile into the
    downhill we are getting confident and get into a rhythm, sweeping from side to side of the trail,
    avoiding most of the obstacles, a bit like skiing. Then, round a bend the track suddenly changes.
    Too late to unclip or brake, there is a drop-off, not too big, only a couple of feet or so, but the
    track makes a downhill turn immediately after with loose limestone and the drop on the outside. I
    mutter "Speed is your Friend" through gritted teeth and go for it. Scary, but we both make it OK -
    brake as hard as we dare before the drop, shift the weight back and let it go over the drop-off,
    then just let the bike find it's way round the bend without looking over the edge. We feel immortal
    after that and pedal flat out for the rest of the downhill until we arrive at the road behind the
    Derby Arms. Time is getting on now, so it is a mad dash along the lanes back to Levens, taking it in
    turns to lead against the wind, then over the climb and down the hill to Sedgwick and back to the
    Punch Bowl at Barrows Green for several well-earned pints. A 23 mile ride completed in just over 2
    hours with three off-road sections that we haven't been on before. A bit of tarmac between the
    off-road sections, but by sticking to the back lanes we have hardly seen a car all evening. As it
    got dark there were literally hundreds of bats flying about. I hope they were eating all the insects
    so I won't have to next time. Next time we might try it the other way round. Some of the uphills
    will make great downhills, just not so sure about vice-versa.

    Twohat (because two heads are better than one)
     
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  2. Shaun Rimmer

    Shaun Rimmer Guest

    Twohat <[email protected]> wrote in message news:[email protected]...
    > This is my first go at posting a ride report, so please let me know if it
    is
    > crap (just go easy though ;-)

    It's crap, and you are a total, utter, and complete twohat ',;~P~`````

    > Set off about 8:00 p.m. last night, a few miles of road before taking to a byway at the top of
    > Heversham Head. I've lived round here for years and didn't know it existed until we
    spotted
    > it on the map. Very narrow, very overgrown, but twisty and great fun. First 100 yds or so getting
    > stung on legs, arms, and knuckles from
    nettles,
    > and ducking under hawthorn branches and brambles. Downhill most of the way, tree roots, mud, the
    > occasional rockfall from a wall lurking in the undergrowth, and dark from the overhanging trees. A
    > bit ridged and rutty too, from previous users. Strong smell from the
    wild
    > garlic growing in the bottom of the hedge. Great fun and a real rush for about a mile until we
    > emerge onto the A6 opposite Levens Hall. A quick bit of road takes us up through Levens Village
    > and down across the Lyth Valley to Gilpin Bridge. Up the Lyth Valley road for a few hundred yards
    > and left onto a farm track which dog-legs us past the main road and onto a bridleway which climbs
    > across the bottom of Whitbarrow Scar. This is another one which I've never been on before, and I
    > can't help thinking as we climb steadily through the trees for about a mile that we
    are
    > doing it the wrong way round. Not too steep, but lots of tree roots carpeted in last year's larch
    needles
    > makes it tricky and hard work. The pay back comes the other side though, with a long
    > downhill to Beck
    Head.
    > Similar to what we have just gone up but with superb views across the Kent estuary to Sandside and
    > beyond. Got to concentrate though, dark under the trees with a few obstacles lurking. From Beck
    > Head we turn right onto another bridleway, flattish, rutted twin track which leads us onto the
    > road up to Witherslack Hall School. Great views across the valley to the back of Whitbarrow Scar.
    > Opposite the school we turn left onto another bridleway climbing steadily
    up
    > towards the top of Yewbarrow. This time it is a mixture of mud which has been conditioned by
    > horses, and polished limestone. The mud pushes the bike all over the place, and the limestone
    > gives very little grip at all. Great fun picking the right line. Once over the top the downhill
    > looks like more of the same, but through
    the
    > woods, tree roots (I don't really like tree roots!), sticking-up lumps of rock, (don't look at the
    > rocks, or you will hit them) the odd tree stump, and occasionally a steep drop to the right of the
    > trail, scary with the trail cambered towards it. About half a mile into the downhill we are
    > getting confident and get into
    a
    > rhythm, sweeping from side to side of the trail, avoiding most of the obstacles, a bit like
    > skiing. Then, round a bend the track suddenly changes. Too late to unclip or
    brake,
    > there is a drop-off, not too big, only a couple of feet or so, but the
    track
    > makes a downhill turn immediately after with loose limestone and the drop
    on
    > the outside. I mutter "Speed is your Friend" through gritted teeth and go for it. Scary, but we
    > both make it OK - brake as hard as we dare before the drop, shift the weight back and let it go
    > over the drop-off, then just let the bike find it's way round the bend without looking over the
    > edge. We feel immortal after that and pedal flat out for the rest of the
    downhill
    > until we arrive at the road behind the Derby Arms. Time is getting on now, so it is a mad dash
    > along the lanes back to
    Levens,
    > taking it in turns to lead against the wind, then over the climb and down the hill to Sedgwick and
    > back to the Punch Bowl at Barrows Green for
    several
    > well-earned pints. A 23 mile ride completed in just over 2 hours with three off-road sections that
    > we haven't been on before. A bit of tarmac between the off-road sections, but by sticking to the
    > back lanes we have hardly seen a car all evening. As it got dark there were literally hundreds of
    > bats flying about. I hope they were eating all the insects so I won't have to next time. Next time
    > we might try it the other way round. Some of the uphills will
    make
    > great downhills, just not so sure about vice-versa.
    >
    > Twohat (because two heads are better than one)

    Nice work! Don't know what your problem with roots is though - roots are freaking ace! You can jump
    off 'em, ride up and over 'em, and they keep those bloody gret trees upright an' all!

    23 miles/2 hours - decent pace too dude.

    So, you'z up Cumbria way then - you lucky bastard.

    Shaun aRe
     
  3. Twohat

    Twohat Guest

    "Shaun Rimmer" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...
    >
    > Twohat <[email protected]> wrote in message news:[email protected]...
    > > This is my first go at posting a ride report, so please let me know if
    it
    > is
    > > crap (just go easy though ;-)
    >
    > It's crap, and you are a total, utter, and complete twohat ',;~P~`````
    >
    > > Set off about 8:00 p.m. last night, a few miles of road before taking to
    a
    > > byway at the top of Heversham Head. I've lived round here for years and didn't know it existed
    > > until we
    > spotted
    > > it on the map. Very narrow, very overgrown, but twisty and great fun. First 100 yds or so
    > > getting stung on legs, arms, and knuckles from
    > nettles,
    > > and ducking under hawthorn branches and brambles. Downhill most of the way, tree roots, mud, the
    > > occasional rockfall from
    a
    > > wall lurking in the undergrowth, and dark from the overhanging trees. A bit ridged and rutty
    > > too, from previous users. Strong smell from the
    > wild
    > > garlic growing in the bottom of the hedge. Great fun and a real rush for about a mile until we
    > > emerge onto the A6 opposite Levens Hall. A quick bit of road takes us up through Levens Village
    > > and down across
    the
    > > Lyth Valley to Gilpin Bridge. Up the Lyth Valley road for a few hundred yards and left onto
    > > a farm
    track
    > > which dog-legs us past the main road and onto a bridleway which climbs across the bottom of
    > > Whitbarrow Scar. This is another one which I've never been on before, and I can't help thinking
    > > as we climb steadily through the trees for about a mile that we
    > are
    > > doing it the wrong way round. Not too steep, but lots of tree roots carpeted in last
    > > year's larch
    > needles
    > > makes it tricky and hard work. The pay back comes the other side though, with a long downhill
    > > to Beck
    > Head.
    > > Similar to what we have just gone up but with superb views across the
    Kent
    > > estuary to Sandside and beyond. Got to concentrate though, dark under
    the
    > > trees with a few obstacles lurking. From Beck Head we turn right onto another bridleway,
    > > flattish, rutted
    twin
    > > track which leads us onto the road up to Witherslack Hall School. Great views across the valley
    > > to the back of Whitbarrow Scar. Opposite the school we turn left onto another bridleway climbing
    steadily
    > up
    > > towards the top of Yewbarrow. This time it is a mixture of mud which has been conditioned by
    > > horses,
    and
    > > polished limestone. The mud pushes the bike all over the place, and the limestone gives very
    > > little grip at all. Great fun picking the right line. Once over the top the downhill looks like
    > > more of the same, but through
    > the
    > > woods, tree roots (I don't really like tree roots!), sticking-up lumps
    of
    > > rock, (don't look at the rocks, or you will hit them) the odd tree
    stump,
    > > and occasionally a steep drop to the right of the trail, scary with the trail cambered towards
    > > it. About half a mile into the downhill we are getting confident and get
    into
    > a
    > > rhythm, sweeping from side to side of the trail, avoiding most of the obstacles, a bit like
    > > skiing. Then, round a bend the track suddenly changes. Too late to unclip or
    > brake,
    > > there is a drop-off, not too big, only a couple of feet or so, but the
    > track
    > > makes a downhill turn immediately after with loose limestone and the
    drop
    > on
    > > the outside. I mutter "Speed is your Friend" through gritted teeth and
    go
    > > for it. Scary, but we both make it OK - brake as hard as we dare before the
    drop,
    > > shift the weight back and let it go over the drop-off, then just let the bike find it's way
    > > round the bend without looking over the edge. We feel immortal after that and pedal flat out for
    > > the rest of the
    > downhill
    > > until we arrive at the road behind the Derby Arms. Time is getting on now, so it is a mad dash
    > > along the lanes back to
    > Levens,
    > > taking it in turns to lead against the wind, then over the climb and
    down
    > > the hill to Sedgwick and back to the Punch Bowl at Barrows Green for
    > several
    > > well-earned pints. A 23 mile ride completed in just over 2 hours with three off-road
    sections
    > > that we haven't been on before. A bit of tarmac between the off-road sections, but by sticking
    > > to the back lanes we have hardly seen a car
    all
    > > evening. As it got dark there were literally hundreds of bats flying about. I
    hope
    > > they were eating all the insects so I won't have to next time. Next time we might try it the
    > > other way round. Some of the uphills will
    > make
    > > great downhills, just not so sure about vice-versa.
    > >
    > > Twohat (because two heads are better than one)
    >
    > Nice work! Don't know what your problem with roots is though - roots are freaking ace! You can
    > jump off 'em, ride up and over 'em, and they keep those bloody gret trees upright an' all!
    >
    > 23 miles/2 hours - decent pace too dude.
    >
    > So, you'z up Cumbria way then - you lucky bastard.
    >
    >
    > Shaun aRe
    >
    >
    >
    >
    Thanks for the comments Shaun.

    Come and join us sometime - we aren't state of the art stumpjumpers but we have a good time doing
    what we do.

    The roots thing is just a personal dislike - I can see that some people might like them - I even
    approve of the way they hold the trees up, I just don't like the way they make my wheels go where I
    can't control them any more, particularly when they are wet, which they usually are round here. Just
    summat I'm not good at, ya know?

    Have you done Claife Heights? Or Longsleddale over to Staveley? Or Whinfell to Borrowdale? Or
    Farleton Knott? Or the Garburn? They are some of my faves.

    Cheers

    Twohat (because two heads are better than one)
     
  4. Shaun Rimmer

    Shaun Rimmer Guest

    Twohat <[email protected]> wrote in message news:[email protected]...
    > "Shaun Rimmer" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    > news:[email protected]...
    > >
    > > Twohat <[email protected]> wrote in message news:[email protected]...
    > > > This is my first go at posting a ride report, so please let me know if
    > it
    > > is
    > > > crap (just go easy though ;-)
    > >
    > > It's crap, and you are a total, utter, and complete twohat ',;~P~`````

    <wordectomy>

    > > Nice work! Don't know what your problem with roots is though - roots are freaking ace! You can
    > > jump off 'em, ride up and over 'em, and they keep those bloody gret trees upright an' all!
    > >
    > > 23 miles/2 hours - decent pace too dude.
    > >
    > > So, you'z up Cumbria way then - you lucky bastard.
    > >
    > >
    > > Shaun aRe

    > >
    > Thanks for the comments Shaun.

    Welcome!

    > Come and join us sometime - we aren't state of the art stumpjumpers but we have a good time doing
    > what we do.

    HAve to sort something out sometime!

    > The roots thing is just a personal dislike - I can see that some people might like them - I even
    > approve of the way they hold the trees up, I just don't like the way they make my wheels go where
    > I can't control them any more, particularly when they are wet, which they usually are round here.
    > Just summat I'm not good at, ya know?

    Aye, and I must admit they get to me sometimes too, they especially used to, now I just love it!

    > Have you done Claife Heights? Or Longsleddale over to Staveley? Or
    Whinfell
    > to Borrowdale? Or Farleton Knott? Or the Garburn? They are some of my faves.

    Did Claife Heights one time with the bike club - turned up at the lakeside, crossed on the ferry,
    rain hammering down, worked our way up to C/Heights, down through the forest (whoooo!), round about
    a it, up to Grizedale, got lost, got found, excellent rocky descent from there too (even in the
    rain, it was excellent fun!) - loved that ride, would love to tackle it in the dry sometime - that
    polished slate is awfully threatening in the wet, when you're doing *15 + mph down hill on
    it.........heheheheh..........

    Cheers!

    Shaun aRe - *Hey, that was _extremely_ fast for me!
     
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