Saturday Drive out Lakes Pre49 (Into the Jaws of Hell
I awoke pretty early with a bit of a Fuzzy head and a hollow stomach. The Met Office forecast that I had read a couple of days before said "Gale Force winds, Heavy showers with chance of Thunder"
for today... I wanted everything to go well and to plan and so never told anyone what I knew....... I was afraid they may bottle it and mind you every other local forecast was for light showers with sunshine. So that is what I brian washed myself
into believing was going to happen. I put the hollow feeling in my stomach down to being just plain hungry so off I toddled in search of some food. My Wife is a good sort usually when we go caravanning she gets up with the lark and cooks her hard working husband a full English. This morning she was dying, but very considerately dyeing very quietly, so no breaky for me, well not in the caravan anyway. I didn't get a photo yesterday of Lee & Julie Hall's Neat A Sedan so I got one a I walked in search of some grub.
The NSRA guys were already up when I stumbled to the car park around 8:50am the restaurant was closed so I ventured in to the shop and went all continental with a couple of fresh croissants ooh la laa ;o) If you look close at the above photo you can just see (yellow arrow) Colin Parkinson and Mark McHardy doing star jumps, I didn't know they were so into there keep fit. By now the restaurant was open and Craig Dixon (speedemon) who lives about 60 mile away in Penrith came down to help with the planned Drive out, he was to be back-up so no tail enders got lost and breakdown crew with spare fuel and tools on board his works van. We all went and got some breaky and felt that hole in me gut filling. The planned start today was 10am prompt and it was getting on now so we went to see who had made it up for the planned days drive.
Steve (Bert) Murray and Laura Gallacher had made the trip south to the Lakes from Dundee in this neat Hillman all hi-tec'd with a Vauxhall Cavalier er or was it Carlton motor?
Other early riser's were the Armstrong and Hay Camps with their respected 3hole'd Anglia and 36 Dodge.
By 9:30 the line-up was looking impressive, with just a couple awol, a couple of names who had booked in didn't bother or couldn't make it for the weekend. and from those that had made it up I think at this time we were just waiting for Maurice Takoor and Richard Black. Richard had set off for the Pre49 in his T but he had diff problems 30mile out and had to get a recovery truck home and then came up in his daily now that's keen so he hitched a ride with Maurice for the weekend. I think like Bikers T drivers have an affinity. I counted 17 cars or was it 18? and 22 where booked in. I knew of 2 that had broken 1 being Richards. I was told a further 8 cars or people had shown interest and asked if they could attend the drive outs, but as of yet none had arrived. A Lass/woman from the Village has a 34 and she hadn't bothered either and she only lives 1 1/2 miles away? and Lanky aint bothered his arse either and he lives about 10 mile away.. but I was happy enough 17 would look impressive and to be honest far more manageable..
There was a very relaxed atmosphere from the assembled Pre49 er's all seemed to be getting on great. I had a couple of people to sort who needed a lift, one being me ;o) My miss's was a DNQ so I managed to get a ride with Lee in the A Sedan and my Daughter and her Boyfriend where very privileged to hitch a lift off Langy Look alike Brian Watson... the story is this, Bakey said to me Friday, "Langy is here I have just seen him" "I said no way is he what's he in his T or his truck?"... "er not sure" said Bake's it turns out he saw Brian watson who has the flamed 47 Sedan... and I do see what he means he does have a look. ;o) See photo at Garage below. Billy Marshall with the stunning 48 Chevy Truck said he wasn't doing the full run today as he needed to see to the kids but would do some of it, which was a shame after coming all that way, but the family must come first.
At last Maurice and Richard arrived so we were now all ready to T off. At Haven the weather was Ok but I pointed out to a couple of them where we were heading, it did look bleak and I said to Lee who was great and had offered me a seat in his A that we were going that way into the dark clouds and mountains. "Into the Jaws of Hell" I think he sort of kak'ed em a bit :o) so that was it we were ready for the off, bang on 10am... "Gentlemen Start your engines"
We sidled out onto the road that leads out of camp slowly so everyone could line up. But I got a call from Craig the anchor man that someone's wife had gone into the shop and left her husband looking quite anxious as we all drove past and left them in the car park... It was Alan Spittle in the 37 and we just couldn't leave him there could we. ;o).. so we lined up on mile end road (Moor Lane) while we regrouped and had our first photo opportunity.(see top photo)
The route was straight forward enough, here we pass through the first town/village Grange over Sands. I got my first phone call from backup crew Craig Dixon (speedemon) that Billy in the 48 Chevy Truck had already turned round and gone back to camp about 6 mile into the run.
Here is Brian who Bakey thought was Langy, doing our first fuel stop before we go into the lakes. This cool 47 Ford which is a stuning car is for sale if you fancy it 25large and a bargain if you ask me, a more reliable rod I doubt you would find and my daughter and her boyfriend John will vouch for its comfort and smooth drive. So don't just gawp at it buy it!
Looked ace seeing all these cool cars fueling up, those with bigger tanks or full ones drove round the back and waited there. not seen in this photo, a pillock in a delivery van came in and tried to get through where the Merc is now, but Ali and Chris had there 36 there. Chris had gone into pay and this numpty was parping his horn for Ali to move the 36 so he could get past with his very important delivery.....the knob thought cus Ali was sat in the right hand seat she was the driver. He was peering round trying to look into the cab to see why this bloody woman wasn't driving off ;o).. errr mate its a left hand drive. You should of seen his face when Chris came out got into the car and drove off, you could of toasted bread on his stoopid hot face ;o)
I got my next call from Craig, where are you? I am just passing a garage with a pub on my left????? I couldn't think where he was? I am on a dual carriageway?... Where?.... turns out our local back up crew man who was to look after the tail enders had gone and got himself lost already ha ha... I found that so funny. It was quite a few miles before he caught us up to.
Photo opportunity 2 while waiting for the gas guzzlers to fill up Carbon foot print Ha i've sh*it em! Maurice and Richard were in high spirits. Maurice to me is an absolute hero. All the way from Croydon in a T in not the best of weather, with bad weather forecast. He didnt bottle it, nore would of Richard either if his T hadnt broken. When ever I was telling anyone about the planned Rod Run up here or down here if you came from Scotland. I told them all, that two guys are traveling all the way from down south in T's.
If anyone should of said sod it I am staying home by the fire it should of been Maurice. He gets my Hero of the weekend award ;o)
We drove along Windermere and out through Bowness up to Ambleside, Dunmail Raise, Grasmere and on to Keswick. In my opinion on the best roads in the Lakes with some stuning views. The weather started drizzling back at the first fuel stop and was getting worse and worse as we got into the Lakes. Near Helvellyn it was at is worse.
Nobody was complaining, just driving, enjoying the views and the experience of the Lakes. I love driving in the lakes, on my bike in my Rod when I had it that is, I even enjoy it in my daily. It is stunning, I wish I could show them the west side of the lakes which is quite mind blowing in parts. Though this route was cool enough and I think though sunshine would of been nice, the lakes take on a different mood in the rain an almost cozy mood , with the waterfalls cascading down all over the fells and mountains and the walls and greenery looking fresh. Mind you maybe Ali an Chris might not agree as they had no paint on the 36 or a rear window but they were still smiling .. ;o) Lee's Rainex was working good we never even needed to switch the wipers on, marvelous stuff.
Craig finally caught us up and said we had a couple of stragglers, so we stopped just outside Grasmere and re-grouped. Which gave us another photo opportunity. I was really enjoying the Run being chauffeured By Lee in the A it felt so good to be part of such an event, I would of loved to have done something like this when I had my 34. An unbroken line of Rods in the lakes now how cool is that. I know this was an NSRA event and the Rod's and Rodders where here because of their respect for the NSRA, not me.. but I couldn't help but feel so honored that people in such great cars had come to where I live and were doing events I had put on (with Bake's help I must add). My confidence was growing I could feel it.
We were now on the last part of the run before the planned meal break at Eamont Bridge (where Craig lives) Craig did a cracking job of pulling out at the rear of the pack and stopping any traffic passing while we all peeled out together real impressive. After here it was a short jaunt to Keswick and a right turn and we were onto the A66 which is the local and not so local bikers favorite stretch of road with special 150mph tarmac apparently ;o) Gave us a golden opportunity to blast out the pipes. Lee's ally headed 302 was straining at the leash and when he gave it its head it didn't half squat and boogie. I forgot what its like to feel the power of a V8 I cant wait to get mine on the road. I will do this route on my own for sure.
This was the 2nd planned fuel stop a massive service and conference centre Rheghed near Penrith. I think only one needed fuel though so we just had a park up for a few mins and the rain was still lashing down and down Ali and Chris's necks to as they had no rear window. but still they were smiling and everyone was still very enthusiastic about the run which was cool.
was hoping we would be able to park on the nice tarmac part, but the place was choker. I go on a big bike ride out in the summer 180 -250 bikes and we always stop here and get on the tarmac section, but not today. Just a few miles from the welcomed meal stop now. Craig suggests we drive through Penrith. oooowww venturing away from the planned route "risky". I don't know Penrith at all I have never been into the town centre, but Craig assured me it was very straight forward and nobody will get lost "honest".. this is from the only man to get lost on this run and that was straight forward and he had 16 Rods to follow. I bowed to his superior knowledge and announced to those that were in ear shot we were to do a quick tour through Penrith town centre if they agreed that is and everyone said yeah they were up for anything and I left Craig to tell the others parked up top.
So it was back out onto the busy A66 to negotiate some tricky roundabouts and umpty dumpty traffic lights.. I got a real panicky phone call from Bakey who has sat in the middle of the group that everyone was getting lost and going the wrong way. I phoned Craig in a bit of a panic to saying..we should never of done this. But as it happened all went well and everybody made it to the Crown Inn for some refreshment see page 2. Bakey said the look on peoples faces when the Rods drove through Penrith was amazing they were just totally gob smacked, taking photos and waving and some just standing open mouthed and dribbling so it was a great idea in the end. Next page the meal stop ( I am still writing page 2 be tomorrow all being well)