Another International event with members joining us from France and Wales as well as all over the country. This is our fourth year of running the rally and until this year the weather has been perfect. However, onward and upward as they say. Sunday dawned and it should have been the East Cornwall Run. Torrential rain made the roads dangerous with standing and running water, mud and twigs so we took the decision to cancel this run.
Monday – South Cornwall Run
Although still light rain and drizzle at the start, the day was much better. We even saw glimpses of blue sky and sunshine. Shadows on the road— WOW!!!!! Over 60 bikes and riders signed on for the today’s run. Taking account of pillion passengers 70 mad biking enthusiasts went exploring the lanes of South Cornwall. After a few wrong turns our first stop was at Penryn at the Quayside Café. Teas, coffees and bacon sandwiches served with great efficiency and much appreciated. We then rode off around Helford Passage and the Lizard, ending up at Coverack for lunch. Coverack was the village devastated by floods earlier in the year and it was great to see how much they had recovered and getting back to something like normal. After leaving Coverack we headed through Helston, passed RNAS Culdrose to a lovely roadside café, Smokey Joes, near Redruth, for a welcome cuppa. From here we rode back to camp.
Tuesday – North Cornwall Run
Weather report – better than yesterday, but not as good as last year. Despite this 60 riders signed on and ventured into the Cornish weather. Trouble was….it was mizzle which really is wet rain!! Anyway we headed for the lovely village of Blisland and a coffee stop in their café. The village is the only one with a green and the church, pub and houses surrounding it. The church is the fifth in a hundred best churches and was favoured by John Betjamin and recently visited by the Duke and Duchess of Cornwall. The pub is also an awarding winning CAMRA pub of the year. From here we ventured across the moor. Swopping pleasantries with the sheep, cattle and ponies as we made our way to Tintagel – home of King Arthur. After a restful lunch break and the weather threatening to improve we rode along the north coast, sometimes in thick fog, to Trevose Head and visited the lifeboat station there. Unfortunately there had just been a shout and we missed out on the opportunity of going on the boat. The RNLI was our chosen charity to support this year and we were lucky to be given ice cream by Kelly’s of Cornwall to sell with all proceeds going to the RNLI. We rode back to camp in lovely sunny but windy conditions.
Wednesday – Leisure day
A day off riding and would you believe the best day of the week, weather wise. Every cloud has a silver lining and this meant that our BBQ evening was dry, warm and a great success, as in previous years. Some colleagues rode the previously cancelled East Cornwall Run, others explored the County in general while some visited one of our member’s narrow gauge railway which runs around his garden. A good day was had by all!!!
Thursday – West Cornwall Run
We were pleased to welcome Rod and Carol Hann on today’s run which took us to the west of the County and almost to Land’s End. Heading out of camp we rode towards Chacewater tentatively going through two fords. After the recent downpours its a wonder they were passable, but they were. No swimming involved! Approximately 15 miles further on we stopped at Stithians Lake for a drink and chat. Our lunch break was in St Just, only a few miles from Land’s End. After here we rode through St Ives and Hayle and stopped at Hell’s Mouth café for yet another break. Lovely sea and cliff views from here. Camp is our next stop.
Friday – Mid Cornwall Run
It’s the last day of the rally, so its a short run to enable us to get back to camp and load the bikes for the journey home tomorrow. After fives days I’m fed up mentioning the weather – but I’m going to. It was awful. Strong winds and rain overnight resulted in strong winds and rain in the morning. By the time the run started the rain and wind had decreased and it was just mizzle. The run went through the coastal town of Mawgan Porth and onto the Birds of Prey Sanctuary for a coffee stop and a display from the birds. From here we rode our way through the lanes to Fowey, a lovely seaside town and port where the occasional cruise ship docks. Then onto the famous Charlestown for lunch, Charlestown is known for its tall ships and is used for filming in Poldark. From here it was straight back to camp. Although the wind had dropped, the rain lashed down again. Some colleagues went home early because of the weather but those who didn’t enjoyed an evening of fish and chips and a good natter about the week.
Thanks to all who were involved in putting this event on and a big thanks to all who attended. Here’s to next year. It won’t be long.
The following photos are of the bikes in Charlestown and were taken by Nigel Pamment, a member of the public who came to see the bikes.