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TOPIC: Easter Forest Ride - Saturday 19th April 2014

Easter Forest Ride - Saturday 19th April 2014 3 years 6 months ago #517

  • Mr Incredulous
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The long weekend saw the biggest turn out of the year so far with Kaff, Fi, Hannah, Julie, Omar, TT, PK, Richie, Sam, Big Ben, Ollie, Slam Dunc, Ron, Hawkeye, Mikey, Marc, Baz, Rob, Jeff, Duncan, Neil, Hamish, Kev & Me being Joined in the car park by a good sized Mods Group too. Slam made lots of friends by giving out sets of tyre levers - most welcome.

Backsey had kindly made his Blur available so that my mate from SA, Kev, who does a bit of XC/Enduro racing back home, could join us for the ride and with lovely sunshine and dry trails he couldn't have picked a better week to come out.

With so many people in the car park it was a bit of a job just getting everyone to leave together and with Julie having another car related incident just after we hit the trails it wasn't long before the phone was ringing with an enquiry from Ben as to our whereabouts.

My ride on Wednesday evening had got cut short with a dodgy BB so, that fixed, and with some summer tyres on the bike too, I was keen to get going. We maybe went off a bit quick but most people seemed to be in touch so it looked like everyone was in good shape for a nice, fast and dusty ride.

After re-grouping at The Graveyard bridge, we rode the trails alongside West Eseex GC before taking the usual trails up to The Hump and onto the log ride. It's obviously a great shame when storms cause so much tree damage in the forest but it has at least freshened up the trails and created some good opportunities for the trail fairies to get to work. We're old hands at this one now and after a quick check to see it was safely rideable, everyone gave it a go. Fiona 'Fiona styled' it while Mikey did away with the need to see if it was safe by bunny hopping the whole thing!

We climbed up to Andy's Log and then turned right to head past Bradleys and down to The Robin Hood. We hadn't ridden the full length of the lovely trail down to the clearing for a while and it's definitely one of my favourites so as I was keen to show off some of Eppings best bits to Kev, it had to be done. Poor Kev didn't leave it with too good memories though, getting his front wheel stuck in a hole and face planting after going over the bars. Most of us have been there and some of us make a habit of it!

I got a shout and rode back to find him ok and more concerned at having broken TT's glasses - after a few minutes searching through the leaves, he found the snapped off arm that we were looking for tucked behind his ear. I had some explaining to do later on at the party when he walked in with 3 or 4 red lumps on his forehead!

From the clearing we rode the high trail that follows Loughton Brook to Baldwins Pond. Once more a new tree down on the route kept us on our toes with a few detours needed before we emerged at Diet Coke Corner for a breather. While we waited their was a bit of discussion about the amount of uphill we'd ridden so that made up my mind and we climbed some more, up Omi's to the top of Clay Ride and through The Bombholes which were really good fun.

We were met at this point by a couple of oriental looking chaps who emerged suddenly from the direction of the Drop-off. They were going our way and It wasn't long before rumours started circulating that they had been sent from Beijing to investigate the simmering row over Tom's karma. This seemed a bit far fetched but with the main suspect and the groups only prospect of communicating with them being in Devon, we had no choice but to let them join us. I'm not sure but they may have been twins, either way it didn't take long for one of them to hit the dirt.

North now and onto the run down to The V, Stream Logs and W. At the W we had some extended play time and watched Neil turn himself purple in his vain attempts to conquer the rooty exit. Slam Dunc provided the best moment of entertainment when, after following Mikey over the kicker going south, he floated high and right, straight into the bushes.

We rode down to the Boggy Valley and with TT leading the way on his big wheels headed onto the great trail that takes you down to The Rooty Staircase. About half way down we thought we'd lost everybody but then Hawkeye appeared and we flew down the rest of the trail taking more than a few liberties on the roots at the bottom. Great fun.

We then climbed up to Golding's Hill Ponds and after crossing the road made our way downhill before heading right towards Debden. The trail has suffered from a couple of big trees coming down but is still navigable although with no momentum the climb out is a real toughy - their were loads of ramblers. Fiona though, seemed to have found an engine from somewhere and sprinted to the top - sickening!

We rode along the ridge above Indian Summer and then cut across the bridle way to ride the nice twisty climb up to Jacks Hill car park. Such a lovely trail, it must be great to ride down but we rarely do. With Baz now in front we rode through the ferns and found ourselves once again queuing up to take on 9 Logs. It's quite funny listening to all the carnage going on behind you as you ride through - we must get a video set up one day to capture it all as It must have been a full five minutes after I got through that the last riders made it out.

We rode up to the bridleway and after considering and disposing of the idea of a dash down into Theydon, Bradley's finally got a serious mention so we rode the nice trail that runs parallel with the bridle before heading back through to Jacks Hill car park again.

No best bits ride would be complete without a whiz down Secret Squirrel so on we went. Omi asked if the stream crossing at the start was ok. I wasn't sure but having been swimming there in the past I suggested he should take one for the team and try it out for us. He gave that idea a miss which I must say disappointed me a little.

After a re-group in Broadstrood car park we crossed Golding's Hill again and made our way back towards Wake Valley. Half way to ENR, Duncan B became the latest to suffer a rear derailleur being ripped from the bike. At this point the sense of spirit and sympathy that usually sees everyone wait while the problem is fixed gave way to the need to be at the front of the lunch queue and a few people sneaked away. Fortunately for those of that remained, Ollie has a giant hanger and he whipped it out and set about getting Duncan back on the trails.

With an afternoon party to head for, kev and I were always going to be heading back early but It had been such a good ride that I really didn't want to leave and I was really fancying a pint. We followed everyone back to The Ups and Downs and said our goodbyes as everyone else made for Bradley's.

Hopefully someone else will fill in the gap for the rest of the ride.
Never cease to be amazed!
Last Edit: 3 years 5 months ago by Mr Incredulous.
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Easter Forest Ride - Saturday 19th April 2014 3 years 5 months ago #521

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Good ride enjoyed by all I think, it was good to make the most of it being so dry and get a bit racy in places. My legs had the right hump on Sunday!
Introduce the device Mrs. Dimpkins!!!!
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Re:Easter Forest Ride - Saturday 19th April 2014 3 years 5 months ago #523

  • Barry
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Great ride and good to see the trails so dry
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Easter Forest Ride - Saturday 19th April 2014 3 years 5 months ago #524

  • Omarito
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It was a really nice ride. After Bradleys there was this discussion of what to do next, for the first time in a long time PUB! was not the straight answer to the stright question and we found ourselves trying to decide whether to do the rooty downhill near strawberry ponds or lippets. So we did both via the Si’s bridge of shame. Fiona, Kaff and me got the corresponding abuse for chicken running to the other end.

Nice debrief at he SH with gentle John representing the other group and dry bikes.

Towards the end, the fit and strong (Fiona, Hannah and Rob) went for an extra loop to Pole Hill, I first thought they were joking, but they are tough cookies. My legs were only good to take me back to the car park.
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Easter Forest Ride - Saturday 19th April 2014 3 years 5 months ago #525

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Missed the Pole Hill loop :(

It was excellent down Lippets and the run down back to the Graveyard Bridge.
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Easter Forest Ride - Saturday 19th April 2014 3 years 5 months ago #528

  • Fiona
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Great ride Saturday, must have taken some good planning to link all those best bits together.

Would like to take credit for sprinting to the top of the mountain first but alas Omi, Ben & Hawkeye had already taken residence at the summit.
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Easter Forest Ride - Saturday 19th April 2014 3 years 5 months ago #529

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Tip for you - Paul K is great to lead on a road course with little arrows (somebody has to take the run into the wind) BUT in the forest with no marked route..........
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Easter Forest Ride - Saturday 19th April 2014 3 years 5 months ago #530

  • Kaff
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That was great fun on Saturday.

Alas, I had another over the handlebars moment in a boggy stream on my quest for the elusive doughnut. Luckily it was a soft landing in the mud. Thanks to Julie for extracting my leg from being tangled in my bike. Unfortunately my bike didn't come off so well as myself. Seem to have buggered up the gears a bit. Never mind I have a knight in shining armour coming to my rescue this evening to fix it.
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Easter Forest Ride - Saturday 19th April 2014 3 years 5 months ago #534

  • Mr Incredulous
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Fiona wrote:
Great ride Saturday, must have taken some good planning to link all those best bits together.

Would like to take credit for sprinting to the top of the mountain first but alas Omi, Ben & Hawkeye had already taken residence at the summit.

Thanks Fi, it's nice to know that people enjoyed it - all those sleepless nights!

I didn't see the three Amigo's but I'm still not sure they'd have climbed it any quicker than you did.
Never cease to be amazed!
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Easter Forest Ride - Saturday 19th April 2014 3 years 5 months ago #535

  • Rob P
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Fi and Kaff fair flew up pole hill even though Kaff was 'single speeding' yet again. We need to send her on a cycle maintenance course
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Ride Info

Place

The rides always start from Chingford Plaines car park (see map below) which is opposite Chingford Golf Course and 5 minutes walk from Chingford Overground Station.

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Time

Be bike ready at the meeting point at least 15 mins before ride start time. Pedals turning at 11am every Saturday morning or 7pm most Wednesday evenings

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Ability

Saturday: medium/fast pace, distance approx. 18-25+ miles, duration approx. 4-5 hours. Wednesday evenings: fast sprint, distance approx. 10-15+ miles, duration 2-3 hours.

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Tools

The forest is full of hazards that can bring an end to your ride, so bring a mini pump, spare tube and multi-tool so we can all spend more time pedalling.

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Essential

It's simple NO helmet, NO ride. Other than that you can wear whatever keeps you warm, dry and happy. But, be warned some days the forest can be extremely muddy.

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Under 35?

No problem, we have regular riders who are 25 years young and some who are 50+. As long as you can keep up you are more than welcome to join us.

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Directions

M25, Junction 26 (Loughton & Waltham Abbey). From roundabouts, follow signs for Loughton A121 & Epping B1393 for 1.3 miles. Take 4th exit at Wake Arms roundabout for Woodford A104 for 2.8 miles. Turn right onto Rangers Road A1069, follow for 1 mile past the Royal Forest Hotel and down the hill. Take the first right onto Bury Road, continue for 200m and turn into the car park (see map below).

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About

MBRO35 (Mountain Bike Riders Over 35) are a social group of riders, not a club. As you may have guessed we are mostly over 35 years of age although some that ride are younger so don't let that put you off.

The group ride on a Saturday morning at 11am in Epping Forest which is to the North East of London. A lot of us have lived around and cycled in the forest for a good number of years and we are lucky to have some regular riders who know their way around the miles of singletrack very well. We ride all year round and usually get a pretty good turn out in all but the foulest weather. We are a sociable group and the emphasis is on enjoyment rather than speed or the mileage travelled. Having said that, the rides can be fairly quick at times and whilst we welcome riders of all abilities you will need a good level of fitness in order to keep up as well as a mechanically sound mountain bike. We ride mostly on the forest singletrack, the narrowness of the trails and exposed tree roots make for some challenging technical riding.

In addition to the regular Saturday rides we also do forest night rides on a Wednesday evening at 7pm as well as occasional away days or weekends. If you prefer your wheels on firmer ground, there is also a strong road contingent within the group that often rides out into the Essex and Hertfordshire countryside on a Saturday or Sunday. The road rides usually leave earlier in the day and head out via High Beech for trips of anything up to 70 miles. Most local rides are followed by a debrief in The Station House pub in Chingford where thanks to a very amiable Landlady we have a place to wash the bikes and store them in safety while we have a few beers and discuss the events of the day. You can also read about some of our most recent rides in the Ride Reports section on the forum.

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