Scenic Forest of Bowland forum ride,108 km (67 miles) from Waddington, Sat 21st August 2021.

@ColinJ @colly , I trust you've both made it home by now? I rolled in at the traditional time, for a ColinJ Dales / F of B ride, of three minutes before sunset. I really must bring lights on these things!

A great day out. Thanks again for the company.

I'll leave Colin to expand on the cows, calves, bull excitement, with photos I hope, and perhaps Colly to provide additional photos, including the one we saw you taking of us from the smug side of the second herd whilst we cowered manfully by the wall. I've looked at the gps recording and determined that we lost 25m on the first herd and another 16m on the second. Still probably less than turning back and going the very long way round, not to mention more 'fun'. Plus, Littledale and Roeburndale are pretty special little 'hidden' valleys; not to be missed due to some bovine ambling.
 
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ColinJ

ColinJ

Puzzle game developer
I made it home eventually at... 22:05! :wacko:

It was looking like I might just catch my 19:10 train but I made a stupid mistake. I didn't fancy the steep little ramps at Sawley and West Bradford and got it into my head that the A59 was the answer. It wasn't! I just checked the map and found that I was thinking of the A671. The A59 was unpleasant and slower overall.

And so we arrived at Clitheroe station 4 minutes after the train's departure time. I said goodbye to colly and went to my platform. I checked the notice board and saw that the next train would not be until 20:25. I spent 20 minutes eating various biscuits and drinking carbo drinks.

I was going to have a nap until the train arrived but decided to check the noticeboard again first... 20:25 service cancelled because of a fault on the train. Oh bloody super! I didn't hear any announcement. If I hadn't checked I would have waited nearly an hour longer for a train that would not arrive...

I decided to cycle to Rose Grove station to catch the train that I had intended to catch at Blackburn. I rushed over there but missed that one by 10 minutes. If I had not wasted 20 minutes at Clitheroe, there would have been no problem at Rose Grove!

So, I finally cycled home from Rose Grove. It was dark by then but I had lights.

I am now a battered, knackered spent force! My ride stats: 149 km (93 miles), 2,350 m (7,710ft) of ascent. About double what I am fit for! :laugh:

Some kind of report after sleep... :okay:
 

colly

Re member eR
Location
Leeds
I made it home eventually at... 22:05! :wacko:

It was looking like I might just catch my 19:10 train but I made a stupid mistake. I didn't fancy the steep little ramps at Sawley and West Bradford and got it into my head that the A59 was the answer. It wasn't! I just checked the map and found that I was thinking of the A671. The A59 was unpleasant and slower overall.

And so we arrived at Clitheroe station 4 minutes after the train's departure time. I said goodbye to colly and went to my platform. I checked the notice board and saw that the next train would not be until 20:25. I spent 20 minutes eating various biscuits and drinking carbo drinks.

I was going to have a nap until the train arrived but decided to check the noticeboard again first... 20:25 service cancelled because of a fault on the train. Oh bloody super! I didn't hear any announcement. If I hadn't checked I would have waited nearly an hour longer for a train that would not arrive...

I decided to cycle to Rose Grove station to catch the train that I had intended to catch at Blackburn. I rushed over there but missed that one by 10 minutes. If I had not wasted 20 minutes at Clitheroe, there would have been no problem at Rose Grove!

So, I finally cycled home from Rose Grove. It was dark by then but I had lights.

I am now a battered, knackered spent force! My ride stats: 149 km (93 miles), 2,350 m (7,710ft) of ascent. About double what I am fit for! :laugh:

Some kind of report after sleep... :okay:
Sorry to hear about the train Colin. I would not have fancied riding much more tbh.
I guess you had no choice.:sad:
 
Oh dear - sorry to hear all that Colin. I'm surprised you had the energy to write the above after that epic of not-travelling on trains! I noticed last night, looking at Colly's Strava track, that you'd gone along the A59: ugh! The A671 might have been the answer, but certainly cycling all the way home very much doesn't sound like the top result :-\ I hope you're feeling better today than you did last night.
 
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ColinJ

ColinJ

Puzzle game developer
Oh dear - sorry to hear all that Colin. I'm surprised you had the energy to write the above after that epic of not-travelling on trains!
I was too tired to watch TV but also too tired to go to bed! I typed that while trying to gather the energy to climb the stairs... :laugh:

I definitely didn't eat and drink enough during the day. I drank half a bottle at Clitheroe, finished off my chocolate biscuits (which HAD melted by then), and ate a cereal bar that I'd bought in Wray, but forgotten about. My ride home was hard work, but I felt slightly better than the ride from Rathmel to Clitheroe so the refuelling had helped.

Anyway, back to the ride... I only took one photo, which was of my bike crammed into what was supposed to be a suitable space on the train from Blackburn to Clitheroe in the morning. @colly took a lot of photos, which I hope he will post later.

I thought the route was fantastic, but harder than expected. It was great on our clear, warm, sunny day but I really wouldn't fancy it in poor conditions. Some of the steep descents would be dodgy in wet conditions and lethal if there were any ice about.

The views from Littledale between Quernmore and Crossgill were spectacular. We could see over Lancaster to Morecambe Bay and the mountains of the Lake District beyond. Looking to the east we could see the big hills of the Yorkshire Dales. The Forest of Bowland itself was looking lovely yesterday.

'Close Encounters of the Bovine Kind'... @Sea of vapours has made reference to the cattle above. We had descended to a gate (near Haylot Farm?) and found a herd of cattle on the other side blocking our way. The cows had calves, and there was also a large bull. We were not going to take any chances with them!

It would have taken a huge detour to go back the way we had come and taken an alternate route so we waited. And waited... Eventually, we made enough noise to gradually move the cattle on to pastures new and were on our way again. Not for long though - we soon found another herd in front of us. No bull this time, but wise people do not take chances with cows with calves. There was a thread elsewhere on the forum recently where some people seemed to think that cows are gentle, timid creatures that are no threat. No, they are big, heavy creatures that are a bit slow-witted and can easily get spooked. They are also very protective of their young. You don't want something like that jumping up and down on you! Once they moved out of our way we continued.

We decided to save time by skipping the cafe stop at Wray. We stopped briefly at the village post office for supplies and then did a detour from our original route because of roadworks on Mewith Ln.

We made a few more small changes to the route after that as I was starting to suffer and wanted the easiest route back. We went via Rathmel and Wigglesworth rather than Long Gill and Tosside.

A fine day out with @colly and @Sea of vapours but I would like to be much fitter next time we tackle something like that. If I'd been fitter then I wouldn't have missed my train and could have avoided the tedious slog back from Clitheroe.
 
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ColinJ

ColinJ

Puzzle game developer
I forgot to mention...

On the way back through Great Mitton I usually take quiet Church Ln and I did so again. It turned out the B6246 was closed from the church hall to the junction with the B6243. Traffic was being sent along Church Ln instead. There were signs saying SLOW but some drivers were just treating the little lane like the main road. I heard shouting ahead of me and saw an angry couple in front of their cottage pointing at the SLOW sign and berating speeding motorists - "Oi, can't you bloody read!!!!" I quite agree! :okay:
 

colly

Re member eR
Location
Leeds
So after the exertions of yesterday I realise I am not going to expire. Which is good, because it means I can post some of the photos I took.
I know the first one I took is first, as for the others?
@Sea of vapours will most likely be able to tell you which mountains and hills are which.
and again.jpg


another somewhere else.jpg



Morecombe Bay:
morcombe bay.jpg







once more.jpg


somewhere else.jpg



Bull stops play:
20210823_145848.jpg


20210823_153947.jpg



From a position of safety I took a view of Colin and Mike in fear of their lives:
20210823_154853.jpg


Once past the fearsome mini cow they sped into the distance PDQ:
yet another again.jpg



Thanks for organising @ColinJ. A terrific route which we will have to do again. :whistle: And thanks to @Sea of vapours for the commentary about where we were and which hills were which.
 
"Well, that's no ordinary calf! That's the most foul, cruel, and bad-tempered bovine you ever set eyes on! It's got a vicious streak a mile wide! It's a killer! He's got huge, sharp-- eh-- he can leap about-- look at the bones! " (And I have turned my back on it! Aaarghh.)

I checked up on weights of cows and we were worrying unduly. A normal sized cow is only a little over half a tonne, and that bull is probably only in the 1 to 1.2 tonne range. Perfectly fine then. Nothing to worry about after all.

Good set of photos. That's Ingleborough in the last one; beginning of the Trough of Bowland in the first, large watery bit, you've correctly labelled as Morecambe Bay. Other hills identified on request ;-)
 
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ColinJ

ColinJ

Puzzle game developer
Once past the fearsome mini cow
That aint no fearsome mini cow... It's a fearsome mini bullock!

Anyway, it wasn't the mini bullock himself that was bothering us, it was his mum giving us the evil eye as if to say "You just try going anywhere near my lad!" :laugh:

I checked up on weights of cows and we were worrying unduly. A normal sized cow is only a little over half a tonne, and that bull is probably only in the 1 to 1.2 tonne range.
I was fairly sure that the weights were more like those, but as we said at the time, it wasn't really that important... If a (hornless) bull weighing 1 tonne was giving you trouble, it wouldn't be that much more trouble than an angry cow weighing half that. Roughly equivalent to being eaten alive by a ravenous lion as opposed to being eaten alive by a ravenous lioness! :okay:

Come on everybody - after seeing colly's lovely photos, aren't you ever so slightly sorry that you didn't manage to make it to the ride? :whistle:
 
The 2 big climbs in the middle of the FoB (Cross of Greet and Bowland Knotts) have some great views from them, but I think yesterday's were even better.
Speaking as someone who's been up a fair few quite high mountains, I think that's often the case. Yes, you can see further from higher up, but it's often more specifically scenic lower down, on the shoulders of mountains or part way up valley sides, where you get a better sense of perspective rather than just spectacular or long views.

Great photos Colly. Thanks for those :-)
 
Well done guys! That bull looks a right bruiser, must be the gated section through Roeburndale I presume. The one in the field behind my house, known locally as Roger, has just been introduced to the cows this week, complete chaos! Pleased you enjoyed Littledale, that’s quite close to me. The view from the top before you plunge downwards is excellent. The view across the bay from @colly photo is at Harris end fell, nice to get up on the moors.
 
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ColinJ

ColinJ

Puzzle game developer
That bull looks a right bruiser, must be the gated section through Roeburndale I presume. The one in the field behind my house, known locally as Roger, has just been introduced to the cows this week, complete chaos!
Ladies, meet Roger, Roger Medaily!

Yes, it was down in a dip there. I think it was at Bladder Stone Beck?
 
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