Idle Swines to Elan Valley


After a delay to this ride that was caused by two broke down bikes (mine) we rescheduled this ride and seeing as the weather had been atrocious, it worked out had a great day for this ride, the weather all week was dreadfull, and the forecast was supposed to be sunny intervals, and it was cool early on, but we got the sun and all went well. First to arrive at mine was Priit, followed by Steve and Terry, then Kieran, then Dec and Paul, I'd told the bride quiet day for you, just 3 teas!.....err sorry me dear!

I decided that because we were running a little bit late due to her indoors deciding to come at the last minute, I'd do the "quick" route to Bridgenorth, but a tractor driver had a different plan, I gave a V for victory as we finally passed by about 5 miles later! At Quatford there was Paul, Rod and Pibs, 2 new bikes for the pack, and a familiar face in Sanjay. Rods latest Bull the immaculate 65, and Pibs' Asbo powered bull, a real one-off character of a bike, and the first one I've ever seen with forward controls! So it was a damned good turn out as well, altogether there were 9 bulls and a Suzuki.

Set off from Quatford and had a great ride down to Ludlow then Knighton. Some of the roads were a bit treacherous with gravel wash from all the days (weeks) of rain that we have had, mud and damp patches were also there to catch you out. No problems and a tea and pee stop was had in the market car-park there. The next leg to the valley was real nice, Red Kites, roads with cattle grids sheep and cattle wandering about free, very nice all round.

As we passed out of Rhayader, some cheeky BMW and KTM Mounted foreign Johnnies cut right out from a layby on the right, in front of the 612 equipped Victoria, it was all I do to hold her back, she being rightly offended at the mess that is a GS! :D We made good time at hit the Elan Valley visitor centre for lunch. The pasties it has to be said are bang on and I know there's a few Pasty aficionados amongst us, decent selection of cake as well!

A few of the more able bodies went a walk round the dam while others relaxed in the cafe. Then when we had had a good nosebag and a little wander round and a natter it was time to go. No surprise that the dynamic duo Rod and Priit decided to go further still and it was off to the seaside for them, weren't Barmouth this time was it lads? The ride back was as pleasant as the ride down, nice bit of sun and dry roads, and oddly enough, very few morons on the road, a surprise seeing as it was Friday!

We pulled up for a cuppa and a snack at the Swan Pub on the road from Craven Arms to Bridgenorth. Nice enough spot, the pub has a sign up which says Dick Turpin stopped here, why dont you? They neglected to say they were the only establishment in England to swizz him! ;) By the time we were almost home it was getting damned uncomfortable even with the new seat, and I think it's been the longest swines yet, but altogether a brilliant day out with great mates, great roads and scenery, and even a good feed. With no breakdowns (as I know to) it don't get much better than that! :)


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