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Exeter Bike Bus - Ride Reports - March 2011

31 March ~ Exminster Golf Course

Last Week

Mike Booth writes:-

Hi Kirby - report on today's post coffee ride ...

Several of the more stalwart members overcame their colds & turned out today (although it did seem to lift the Moaning Index higher than usual, if that's possible). Weather not looking promising, so decided on an 'iggly-wiggly' ride to stay close to home in case we all wanted to abandon if the rain came. Nothing particularly eventful happened (15 riders, up Haldon, Haldon Grill lunch, down Haldon, yawn) so will skip the usual & just claim 3 new Bike Bus roads:-

    from Lat. 50.646200 Long. -3.515655 to Lat. 50.643537 Long. -3.506815;
    from Lat. 50.660621 Long. -3.573739 to Lat. 50.674987 Long. -3.586578;
    from Lat. 50.673523 Long. -3.558019 to Lat. 50.675551 Long. -3.534060.**

Pleased to report that, despite the absence (again) of the Routemaster Whistle Blower, 3 whistles were duly emitted at the appropriate times (seems like you've got to do everything yourself these days - is this what the Big Society is all about?). Penny claimed the last road void as there was a noticeable lack of tarmac in parts, but with the present condition of Devon roads I do not think we can make that a criteria.

Anyway, the most important thing to report is that M&S is open again, so perhaps things can get back to normal now. Incidentally, anyone heard from Judy or Tim recently, as they were last seen at 1015 Thursday heading the wrong way up the Canal Path - they were 50 metres apart so could easily have lost each other, its happened before!

** NOTE: The Bike Bus Technical Team have been tasked with de-coding these mysterious symbols.

Stephanie reports briefly:-

Thanks Mikey for a splendid ride! Glad I made the top of Mamhead, enjoyed the bucket of tea and loved the meander off the hill. We made good time today!

Hope Sue has now blown her nose in the privacy of her home – most considerate. We don’t want epidemics wiping out BB passengers.

I finished on 55 miles – last 12 powered by Lucozade shot and final mile by Exotic Solero (strongly recommended). Bonnie, our friendly shopkeeper in Feniton, asked if I’d cycled to Honiton today! Bless.

Tuesday Bike Bus ~ North Curry

You no doubt know about the Richter Scale - but you may not have heard of the Linsday Scale. Read on ...

Ian Lindsay reports:-

This week, the Tuesday Bike Mini-Bus started its Refreshment Facility Task

In order to find which refreshment facility is best, the fairest way is to award each establishment points and then list them in order in a table.

After many hours of deliberation, going on late into the night, the 192 countries of the UN finally agreed a resolution outlining the rules for the Tuesday Bike Mini-Bus Refreshment Facility Table (Exeter Branch).

There were 2 Cafes that made the list week - the Community Cafe at North Curry and the Colour Wheel Cafe outside of Honiton (there was a third facility sampled on the Deluxe Version of this week's ride - Premium Subcribers will receive full details including GPS co-ordinate of this special facility - those that were fortunate enough to visit this facility commented on the superb Value for Money rating (it was off the scale!!) (ps - thanks Mum!!))

Cafe Standings
Cafe Lindsay Score
North Curry - Community Cafe 14
Honiton - Colour Wheel Cafe 13

So we have an early leader in the Community Cafe in North Curry - next week Buckfastleigh Station and another venue will receive the Tuesday Bike Mini-Bus Refreshment Facility Test

Yell.com reckons there are over 500 potential facilities to try in Devon alone!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Stop Press

After a heroic over-night effort the Bike Bus Technical Team have succeeded in unravelling the mysterious code above**. The whole Team is now being considered for a White Sheep Award.

The results have been plotted on the map below.

<googlemap lat="50.66" lon="-3.55"

      width="600" height="400"  zoom="13">
  1. ff2222

50.674150, -3.535200 50.674390, -3.536550 50.676590, -3.540340 50.677210, -3.543470 50.676740, -3.545980 50.675340, -3.548560 50.674800, -3.552550 50.673880, -3.554920 50.673630, -3.558230

  1. 22ff22

50.675280, -3.586780 50.673780, -3.586850 50.672810, -3.587870 50.671400, -3.586910 50.667840, -3.585560 50.665200, -3.583350 50.664720, -3.578510 50.664190, -3.577820 50.662710, -3.577110 50.661660, -3.575870 50.660540, -3.574170 50.660520, -3.573160 50.660800, -3.573020

  1. 2222ff

50.646180, -3.516010 50.646640, -3.514590 50.646140, -3.513260 50.646100, -3.510730 50.643380, -3.506550 </googlemap>

News from the Far East


Four of our number have been travelling in the Far East.

You can find out more about what they've been up to at this link

24 March ~ Orange Elephant

Mike Booth writes:-

I’m beginning to see this thing about leading being like herding cats – I started out with 12 & ended up with 6! Ok, so Pottsie doesn’t really count, as he only tagged along from the Orange Elephant through Kenn & southward until a suitable time to peel off home to Dawlish. But the others, such excuses! Roger & Steve left next at Gulliford (just before the hills started – say no more). Roger claimed a sore throat & imminent London weekend, whilst Steve muttered something about “Bradninch by 3pm”.

Luton Church

So 9 took the country lanes up the Dawlish Water valley & through Milton Hill to the B3192. Here 3 more passengers abandoned ship with Debbie, Glenis & Ian disappearing. So it was just 6 that made the lunch stop at Luton Church. We sat in the charming little porch to eat our sarnies, & noticed that the church seemed to be supplying electricity via an extension lead to a nearby house!

Lunch over, we rode on through Ideford & passed Ugbrooke House to Chudleigh, then took the Trusham road & Holden Cross to Belvedere Tower. Some lovely stretches of road here, but tired legs complained at the sections where we lost height to have to regain it later. Even so, it was good to try a different way up on to Haldon.

We sat with afternoon tea at Forest Park, then began to feel the cold despite the welcome thin sunshine. We headed home, spotting Tim “offroading” through the woods as we left.

Judy reports breathlessly:-

Wow what a day! Early start to put in a loop to Ayelsbeare Cross. Just arrived and thought it was John disappearing but no - it was Ian arriving at speed. Spanking new shiny blue Ribble Bike selfbuild thanks to Youtube and the skinniest tyres ever seen!

Pauline and Mike modelling their jerseys

Back to Woodbury to collect Glenis who was looking for Almond Essence and Rice Paper! Don’t know which bit of the bike that belongs too! Any way on to the Orange Elephant and John arrives with a huge cardboard box on his shoulder. Is it Xmas? ! No - out come our new bike bus tops! Just by holding them one can swim in the sea, sit in the beach hut and ride a muddy track! Hidden on the collar is a Rectasorus - hope he doesn’t bite! Thanks to the Chinese stitchers, Keith, Kirby, Steph and John for design and dispatch.

Then with some fear and trepidation we went on to the Haldon Mountain Bike centre. A whole new experience! You will love it shouts Steph! Mountain bikes measured and adjusted and away we went to meet Josh - a very enthusiastic but careful instructor, mounted on a double suspension bike.

Lots of Mountain Bike speak which basically meant 'lift the front when leaping a tree stump, lean back, hang on tight and peddle, block out the panic button'! Well he soon had us peddling round around an obstacle course which seemed more like riding the back of the Loch Ness Monster, with trees growing out of its sides! Exhausted and breathless, on we rode!

Stephanie flying!

Next we had to learn how to stay upright without peddling too much! Finally we had to abseil down a step and whizz round a tight bend more like a dirt velodrome. Steph turned Pegasus, there is photographic evidence!

Lesson over and we were to be turned loose onto the Red run! Josh told us of the hazards ahead and off we went. Nine miles of rocks, switchbacks, trees, hillocks, humps, small river crossings, and steps. Hairy scary, exhilarating, exhausting! Brilliant! Do it again!

Even after tea and cake Step had to sit down to get her trousers on and we had to peddle home.! Thanks Josh & Kirby for organising it.

John Rowland reports rather more soberly:-

Warily we approached the sawn off tree stump then pulling back on the handlebars we attempted to jump over what seemed to be a high obstacle, to cries of “not bad” as we circled in line to tackle the challenge once more.

This was phase one of an afternoon’s off-roading instruction, which six of us had volunteered for after recommendations by previous brave souls, two of whom had enjoyed it so much that they had come for a second helping. Josh the instructor with his £2500 bike showed us what to do while our experienced pupils Stephanie and Kirby showed us what they had learnt a month previously. Pauline, John, Tim and Judy followed faithfully growing in confidence as Stephanie’s shrieks of joy and the familiar back chat from us all built up spirits. Next came the circuit with many bends and humps and fairly tight corners banked up like the wall of death. You were supposed to be able to get round without pedalling but for me just to stay upright was success enough.

Not content we were led to the skills arena where we were shown how to stand stationary on our bikes, before being led unwittingly to the jumps. There were three grades each in turn rising in height. The idea being to jump down from a rocky step standing above a drop then turn rapidly across a banked curve. We got the message and were soon going round and round with photographs being taken.

Josh by now realised that we were a happy go lucky cheerful bunch so thought he would quieten us down with the 8 mile red route which contours along the Haldon ridge. We did not hurry but enjoyed the pleasing and rewarding specially built course which took us through trees and alongside steep banks, crossing streams while providing occasional difficult challenges which by now we felt able to take on. Every now and then we paused to take breath while Josh talked bikes, techniques and answered questions as we stood in the sun and enjoyed a mental rest from the scary track Too soon we were back at base with a visit to the Haldon Ridge café (they now have mugs) for a well earned cuppa and cake. To those faint hearted who are undecided we can thoroughly recommend a day off-roading on Haldon ridge.

Tuesday Bike Bus ~ Bovey Tracey

Ian Lindsay reports:-

One day (hopefully soon, so that the RSI currently affecting my diaphragm can be brought under control), I'll rock up at the start of a ride, do the ride, and then just go home - no incidents, no dramas.

Today was not a contender for this elusive day in my cycling life.

What with watching a pensioner trying to explain to another pensioner what a Mocha is (full details from M Booth), cyclists talking about forming a breakaway walking group (full details from T Bishop), British Rail shareholders coming on the Bike Mini-Bus (full details from K James)(obviously!!) and homophobic Seagulls in Teignmouth (full details from S Booth), I assumed that the cycling events of the day were fully covered.

And then I got this report from Judy:-

Our ride today after we left you was totally knackering! As you know we were heading for the reservoirs. What I didn’t know was that TIM thought he was looking for Bridford Resovir,( even though he has walked and cycled there before!) I had forgotten my mobile, You can guess, I turned off following the signs, to the usual Totti ford etc, he sped on in the mist to Moretonhamstead! We then spent some time trying to catch each other and just missed. I finally found him on a bench at the swing bridge.! Fortunately he had a bought a rhubarb pie in Bovey. I had to steal it from him, to get me home!

I must insert at this stage, that Tim & Judy were enjoying their first Bike Mini-Bus experience (good to see you Greens), which was uneventful until they decided to go "off-piste"!!!

PS Bike Mini-Bus Executive Committee have decided that as the Thursday Bike Bus has taken the "New Road Search" as it's own, it was decided that the purpose of the Bike Mini-Bus should be to search out and try new Tea Shops, Bakeries, Cake Shops and other Hostelleries as the weather of the day dictates. Full reports will be available to Premium Subcribers on the quality of each establishment as they are put through their paces!!

17 March ~ Escot

Last Week

After the recent poor performance of the Woodbury contingent it was decided to route the bus via the village and appoint a native to lead the bus after coffee. This appeared to have a positive impact ... with Judy, Glenis and amazingly even Sarah joining the Bus on time ... this brought the total number up to 25.


Despite the good start Mike Bowden felt compelled to depart from the official route and so has picked up his first Black Sheep award.

Judy reports:-

Well, a finger has been pulled out and herewith the Thursday Bike Bus report.

It’s a brave soul who volunteers to lead after Thursday morning tea! I had to scour the map to find a patch on the map near Escot which was free of the black snail trail which meant "they had been there before"!

Then its rounding up a few unsuspecting cyclists to take them on a journey! It turned out to be two peaks, three whistles and a hedge. Seventeen wanted to start out, but Graham had a call to go and replace his laptop. 16 cycled out towards Feniton, the leader had an idea of going to the Donkey Sanctuary!

Laura and Gerald, who had departed earlier were found trying find Talaton. Fortunately someone put them on the right track. Talaton was in the opposite direction!.

Don stopped at Feniton Court to buy a sandwich. He vanished into the hairdressers, with Steph shouting Doris! We thought he might come out with a perm! It was then discovered Steph was actually talking to an elderly lady in a car.

On towards Buckerall. Steph left for home. Up the 1st climb from Gittisham (Whistle 1), onto East Strips. Ian took a phone call. He had someone to attend to back at the office!

Along the top before soaring down to Sidbury (Whistle 2). All thought of flogging up to Donkey Sanctuary dissipated. The back road to Sidford seemed a better prospect! We were afforded stunning of Sidmouth and the sea in glorious sunshine.

Down through the Byes (Whistle 3) and lunch at the seaside. Cake and ice cream! Well we had Peak Hill to scale! Could we beat 5 mins set by the Tour of Britain?

Congratulations 9 out of 11 managed this time to get the Peak Hill award!


Racing down the other side, Kirby turned to Roger and said they would have to go faster than 20 mph on a Time Trial! With that, I understand from an eye witness, he also tried to ride the top of the hedge (telemetry below). The stunt was unsuccessful! Neither bike or rider were injured!

Well, on down the Otter, to Budleigh and the bike track. Getting bored in the trees leader, headed up the path top Keepers Cottage. It seemed Trevor lost momentum at the top of the rise and fell over onto Mike. Oh dear are we to get this bunch back home in one piece! I think we safely negotiated Littleham and the seafront.

Without intending, congratulations to the Exeter contingent you must have done a 100k Audax.

Will that leader be sacked!

Extract from P O Spurr's Official Report

Official report of incident CPR 170311

Following a minor mechanical malfunction pilot officers James and Spurr were separated from the squadron and descending at speed from an altitude of 174 metres when P.O. James, distracted by the electronic readout on his handlebars, turned and remarked to P.O. Spurr (following close and starboard) that they were doing 23 mph.

Raf roundel.png

On resuming eyes-front P.O. James suffered a momentary failure of inertial navigation, resulting in an involuntary yaw to port. There was a violent contact with a Devon bank, resulting in a substantial eruption of debris, the degradation of flora for a distance of approx 20 ft and a spectacular ground loop resulting in P.O. James being pinned under his machine. On being released from the wreckage he appeared to have sustained only an increased blink rate and declared himself fit for further duty. The machine, suffering guidance and mobility malfunctions, was restored to service standard 2 by the combined brute force and ignorance of the personnel present (it is not recorded who provided which) and the sortie resumed after an interval of three minutes.

The only other witness to the incident was a certain 'black sheep' which has so far failed to report in. Devon Wildlife Trust has deplored the collateral environmental damage to the bank and may demand a court marshal.


Kirby's descent of Peak Hill: Showing Speed (mph) vs. Time

Fashion Corner 1

Laura conyngham fashion.jpg

Our normal fashion correspondent is sick this week so Glenis, despite her heavy workload, has agreed to take over.

She writes:-

Were people aware that last week there was a display of the latest fashion accessories for cycling? Forget the 'lycra look' - with the style below, that image may become so 'last year'.

I understand the Crediton branch of the bike bus may be taking orders.

PS Am I right in thinking that last week the bike bus driver took a group past one (or was it 2?) 'cyclist dismount' signs - but didn't allow time for the passengers to dismount? Er - Black Sheep award?

Fashion Corner 2

First sighting of the Bike Bus Jersey

You may recall that Stephanie has borrowed her mother's sewing machine ... and has been desperately busy for the past four weeks.

Bike Bus Intelligence has obtained exclusive images of the products of her labours.

Tuesday Bike Bus - Sticklepath

Ian Lindsey writes:-

Keeping up appearances, this week's bike mini-bus left bang on time at 09h00. Ian's planned route went to pot early on, but we still made good progress throughout the morning. Refuelled after coffee, a ride amongst the country lanes ensued. Big hills obviously came in to the equation. Yet more hills before lunch were the order of the day in the lovely weather.

Just before the lunch stop, it became apparent that the planned cafe was closed, so a trip to a local hostellerie turned out to be just the ticket. After lunch, Mike forced us up and over more hills. Eventually Sue said enough was enough and we took a downhill route home - during this time, the group wanted to give out a BLACK SHEEP AWARD FOR ABSENTIISM, but not wanting to upset senior bike bus management, this course of action was not pursued further.

10 March ~ Cullompton ~ Padbrook Park

Last Week

Sometimes I despair ...

... this is one of those times ...

Between them the Bike Bus passengers have a collection of Cycling Proficiency Certificates, GCSEs, O-levels, Pilot's Licences, A-levels and even (I know it's difficult to believe) Degrees. However the concept of a timetable appears to be alien to 90% of them (I'm conscious I'm pushing my luck mentioning percentages as 75% of Bike Bus passengers haven't got the foggiest idea what they are).

To remind you a bus timetable

  • contains a list of places and a list of times
  • the places and times are linked, and (remember the next bit)
  • the bus goes through each place at the time indicated

In a mistaken attempt to add some interest to Bike Bus rides the Executive decided to periodically change the routes used. (This means it goes through different places). So, for example, last week the Bus should have gone through Aunk at 09:55.


Well the leader plus Don and John did. But Mike, Sue, Jill, Trevor, Glenis, Sarah, Steve, Tim and Hugh seemed to be pre-programmed to follow a route from earlier weeks. This was despite the first four having aready got lost leaving Exeter.

Thus it won't surprise you to learn that they are now 'leading' the Black Sheep Awards.
Trevor reports:-

The Thursday coffee pot ride began well with 5 folk turning up at the Barn Owl including Jill with her shiny new bike which we all made appropriate oooh's & aaaah's at & suggested a few tweaks she might benefit from (the bike that is )!

Distracted as we were we didn't notice the Bus Leader had whizzed off leaving the remainder of us to try & follow the trail of burnt rubber on the road, alas we only caught up at the New Inn where the leader was suspiciously waiting at the door for it to open, mmmm?? (should we introduce random breathalysers), several others also joined us at this point & we all merrily wound our way along country roads to Padbrook Golf Club for a well earned cuppa ..

After refreshment it was up to me to lead the (foolish few, 8 to be exact) for the FIRST TIME on the follow up ride, (I only hoped that my many sleepless night of worry & poring over numerous maps would be ok). My original estimate of 65 miles was met with a lot of coughing & choking which I assumed to be the consumption of too much Cake?

Bike bus leaders badge.png

Anyway on we went first NW past Rull Farm then passing through Brithem Bottom / Halberton / Samford Peverell / Ayshford & on to Westleigh passing a nearby Quarry as a special treat to our resident Geologist who I was sure would want to write a "something interesting about the local STONE" ... Sometime later with several of the group beginning to glaze over, I decided to short cut the intended route to Holcombe Rogus & instead head to Culmstock & the lovely shop cum cafe for lunch, EXCELLENT!

On the homeward stretch we followed familiar ground passing through Craddock / Smithcott / Bradfield where there was a chance to go off piste along a bridle way through the estate but decided to keep the pack together & save it for another day. Shortly after Stephanie decided she'd had enough & veered off but not before the ceremonial presentation of the much coveted "herding cats ride leaders badge" a moment that I shall remember for some time ........!!


The seven of us remaining carried on via Mutterton, Hele (another section of off piste, is that a black sheep award manoeuvre?) & on to Killerton for ANOTHER refreshments stop, & then onward via Poltimore / Westclyst & finally home.

Certainly for my first "Thurs post coffee pot leaders ride" it was a grand day out...... 50 ish miles ?? not 65.

Mike & Sue write:-

Sus & I would like to express our delight (& amazement) at the apparent new policy implemented by Bike Bus Management on the post-Coffee Pot Excursion. Contrary to the shambolic way the pre-coffee potters were treated (we lost count of the times we were abandoned by the Driver), the later tour was a real pleasure.

The new Driver, Trevor, actually appeared to show genuine concern for the well-being of his passengers, & at one point he demonstrated quite touching (not literally!) passenger bonding by refusing to allow the party to split up. Definitely not the sort of exceptional customer service we are used to, but most welcome; long may it continue.

Regards, Sus & Mike

Brunei Bike Bus Launched

Crocodile pretending to sleep ...

Meanwhile further afield Richard Eales is doing sterling work setting up a new Bike Bus Franchidse in Brunei.

Richard reports that one of the challenges faced in Brunei is crocodiles. This has given the Bike Bus Executive an idea ...

... in future passengers will have to think more carefully before straying off the approved route.

Extract from Wikipedia

The larger species of crocodiles are very dangerous to humans. The main danger that crocodiles pose is not their ability to run after a person but their ability to strike before the person can react. The Saltwater and Nile Crocodiles are the most dangerous, killing hundreds of people each year in parts of south-east Asia and Africa (and few in East Devon). Mugger crocodiles and possibly the endangered Black Caiman are also very dangerous to humans.

Spies Uncovered in the Bike Bus


For some while now Bike Bus Intelligence has been aware of malevolent forces at work ...

A shady organisation called EGO has been steadily infiltrating the Bike Bus.

It turns out that Trevor is one of their main players and that Sarah S, Jill and Pauline can all be revealled as EGO subversives. Ostensibly they aim to encourage people to walk! Hence Trevor's numerous attempts to take the Bus off-road last week. However in reality they have darker aims. More will be revealed in due course ...

In the meantime be careful what you disclose about the inner workings of the Bike Bus to any of the above.

Tuesday Bike Bus - Ashburton

Ian Lindsay writes:-

After much deliberation, no black or white sheep awards have been issued today. Senior bike bus management needs to issue criteria for each award in order to avoid any ambiguity!!

Today's ride was a long drag out to the Dartmoor Lodge at Ashburton (Kirby arrived courtesy of British Rail and a local taxi firm). Not a particularly pretty route, but the refreshment standard was good!! After coffee, Mike and Sue took the flatter route to Bovey Tracey, whilst Ian, Graham, Trevor and Kirby took the more scenic but slightly hillier route via Buckland in the Moor and Widecombe.

Widdecombe church.jpg

Chris Boardman won the National Hill Climb Championship in 1990 on the Widecombe Hill and still holds the record at 4 mins 10 seconds - only slightly faster than the bike bus.

  • Ian - 11 minutes
  • Graham - 11 minutes
  • Trevor - 14 minutes
  • Kirby - 17 minutes 30 seconds (includes ice cream half way up)

Lunch in Bovey Tracey followed before the slog up and over Haldon Hill dragged the last remaining joules of energy from our bodies.

Hopefully a flatter route next week

3 March ~ Crediton Station Cafe

Last Week

I thought that the Bike Bus for once had made it to the coffee stop uneventfully ... but I was wrong (see later).

Geoff Cockram reports:-

Even though we were learners and had forgotten our L plates, Kirby entrusted us to be relief drivers today after coffee. We chose a route that was almost flat and set out from Crediton Station Tearooms and got all the way to Morrisons just round the corner before the first stop, due to some cyclists' fuel tanks running low and requiring a refill.

Bike bus leaders badge.png

While the remainder waited outside, first noisy brakes were investigated, then a half-broken chain repaired. The journey was resumed, heading north on lots of virgin roads (do we get points?) with good progress being made until a chain got jammed, finally freed by removing the back wheel. Onwards, upwards and northwards, then just short of Black Dog a rebellion broke out. Having achieved the plateau, a breakaway party decided to return via the hilly terrain we had so carefully avoided. No black dogs in sight so we continued on to lunch via Puddington and Pennymoor. We ate our goodies in the church at Cruwys Morchard where it was surprisingly cold and windy and Sue fed us with snippets of church history.

After a brief break we took the ridge road to Cadeleigh, losing 2 towards Bickleigh before returning to chez Cockram for tea, to toast teacakes in the toaster and ourselves in the conservatory. We remained and saw the others off with a virtual driver, last seen heading for Thorverton.

Mike Booth adds:-


Just thought you'd like to know, Geoff & Penny's house is built on the junction beween the Cadbury Breccia Formation (above you) & the mudstones & siltstones of the Bude Formation (below). The Breccia will contain porous sandstones, with the percolating groundwater moving down through these to the relatively impervious mud/siltstone boundary. Here it appears as springs at the surface, cascading down through their garden. Hope that has put everyone's minds to rest!


Meanwhile unbeknown to those enjoying tea cakes two newcomers (Sarah and Steve) were frantically searching for the Bike Bus. Their day started badly when they arrived at the Arch in Woodbury at the appointed time only to find the three regulars missing. Judy had set off extra early to catch Bike Bus 2, Glenis had got up extra late and taken the unofficial main road route to the Quay, and as far as we can tell Sarah S didn't get up at all. Bravely Sarah & Steve set off all alone to Topsham Station (to find no one there) and then to the Quay only to find the main Bike Bus had departed - and to cap their day they then had a puncture.

The Bike Bus Executive takes a dim view of these events and so Judy and Glenis have been awarded Black Sheep Awards. Sarah S's position is under investigation. Graham also receives an award for extreme neglect of his chain.

DIY Bike Bus Jersey - Week 1

Bike bus jersey part 1.png

For some time now Premium Subscribers have had access to instructions on how to make their own Bike Bus Jersey.

It has been recently decided to offer this same facility to the remainder of the Bike Bus clientel. Instructions will be issued in sixteen parts at random intervals of time. If you miss a particular week then individual back issues can be obtained from Bike Bus Management for just £5.00 each.

This week you will need to

print out the above template
enlarge it by a factor of 6.31
cut it out allowing a 1 cm hem all around
... to be continued ...

Tuesday Bike Bus - Dawlish

Mike Booth reports on Susies Magical Mystery Ride ...

Sus & I met Kirby at Trews Weir & headed for the Swing Bridge meet. As this was supposed to be a gentle ride after our Audax efforts on Sunday, I was surprised at the 15mph that S&K maintained down the cycle path! Increasingly I fell further behind. Fortunately, as we neared the bridge, they met Trevor & Ian by one of the canal side bird viewing points, so I caught up. Not wanting to attract too many to the rather exclusive Tuesday Bike Mini-Bus franchise, we craftily hid out of sight of the official start at the Swing Bridge bench, but despite this we were discovered by Judy on her first Tuesday outing.

We left on the dot, to reduce the chance of any others joining us, powering on towards Exminster, but as we approached Kirby took a call from Graham. He had misread the email & thought we were meeting on the Quay (Black sheep award?). Ian gallantly went to collect him whilst we continued through the town, up the Hill & out towards Kenn. Whilst I adjusted a troublesome front changer, they caught up & we all then went through Kenn & on up via Haydon Common & Black Forest Lodge to Dawlish. En route, it was noted that Ian chatted continually about bike rides, bike bits & bikes, which prompted some to consider he may be getting just a tad obsessive on the subject. Would be interesting to see if anyone else has noticed this, as we can't be doing with obsessives, so we continued our ride across the Heavitree, Alphington & Dawlish sandstones & breccias towards our goal.

Having coffeed & caked in the town, we tried to find the steepest way back towards Powderham - up Strand Hill. As we gasped for breath, Trevor told us of the challenging ride he had lined up as his first shot at being a Bike Bus Leader after next Thursday's Padbrook Coffee Pot - the words "65 miles" had barely passed his lips before it was suggested he re-think! We descended into Cockwood down such a steep hill that 2 riders had to dismount; one as her brakes were worn to nothing on the Audax, the other due to mass & gravity overcoming brake force! This does not fit well with a this rider's new nickname - 'iPad 2' (on the basis that like the new iPad, he is 33% lighter after 8 months than the previous model).

Approaching Powderham, Judy & Kirby continued on towards home with other commitments, so 5 lunched in the pleasant sunshine at the cafe picnic tables. Then a gentle meander back to Exeter in the cool bright afternoon, including a new route for Trevor to see the bird watch area near Marsh Barton.

Apologies for absence were received from Marilyn & Roger (attending elderly relatives), Tim (ailing) & dozens of others who just couldn't be bothered.

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