Saturday 9th July started with some sunny spells amidst the slightly dull and grey morning start. I rode up to Wendover from home to meet the rest of the BMTB Team and to meet up with all the riders for the day.
Thirteen riders turned up for this ride; a great mix of local riders; some people who had traveled quite far to join us; regular faces; new faces; guys; girls (and we did gain a dog at some point!?). This thirteen strong team was joined by Mike, Pollyanna and myself, the acting ride leaders for the day.
After plenty of tea, chat and a pre ride bike check and briefing we headed off for a quick warm up lap around Wendover Woods before heading down the ridge towards RAF Halton to pick up a superb fast singletrack descent down to the Grand Union Canal towpath. We hadnt got far when the first rain showers and punctures of the day caught up with us! Two new inner tubes later we finally hit the canal. We used a good section of the canal to add some distance to this ride and also to give everyone a good warm up and a chance to be social.
Our route took us round the back of Tring outwards Pitstone before turning back towards Aldbury. A few more showers and punctures later we finally found ourselves in Aldbury village! Once in Albury we found the shelter (from some rain showers) in the dense woodland and headed off up an epic climb towards Ivinghoe Beacon. Once at the Beacon we all hit the Cafe for tea and scones (to die for!) and a good bit of social chit chat before a quick photo opportunity at the Beacon before heading back out towards Wigginton.
After a couple of short road stints through Wigginton to connect up the trails we dived back into the Woods to pick up some great Bridleways and twisty singletrack. After helping bump start a local mountain bikers dead car (it all happens on a BMTB group ride!) our route then took us back via Hastoe and Oakengrove before taking a good pause at the huge bombhole sections near Chivery Hall for some play time.
After everyone had worn themselves out playing about in the bombholes we picked up the trails back towards the local 'Crong' for a fantastic gully run descent back towards Wendover Woods before taking on the final climbs of the day back up to Wendover Woods main car park for yet more waffle, tea and cake.
I would like to say a huge thank you to everyone who attended the ride and made it yet another great success. A big thank you to Mike and Pollyanna too for organising the route and for helping lead the days ride.
We hope to see you all again in August...
Scott | BucksMTB