John’s Run to Kettlewell 21 Sept 2019

Eight members started off from the Bluebird Hotel, Samlesbury, on a lovely sunny day and headed up the A59 until we turned off at Chatburn, went into the village and turned left along some lovely lanes to Rimington and on to Gisburn where we joined the A59 again. It was a bit difficult joining the A59 with the traffic flow but eventually a polite car driver stopped and let us all cross as a group and on up the road we went towards Skipton for just over a mile where we took our first stop at Dick Turpins Diner. Plenty of bikes here at the diner and whilst we were there a very smart 3 wheeler with a 1300cc Rotax engine with 2 wheels at the front pulled in. A bit different to the usual trike with chopper forks and VW engine in the back!

After a good rest we set off again and took the turn for Little Stainton, Bank Newton and finally into the pretty town of Gargrave. The town looked lovely in the sunshine with all the flowers and hanging baskets on the houses and shops. It seemed to be having a fete day as there were special car parks open on the approach roads.

From Gargrave we went on to Kirkby Malham and passed over Malham Moor where a large number of visitors were parked up and walking to the Cove and Gordale. On then to Arncliffe where we took the road on the south side of the river Skirfare and then crossed it over a small stone bridge before it joined the River Wharfe. Here we turned north up to Kettlewell for Lunch. Those who had brought sandwiches ate them here but those who hadn’t were disappointed to find that there were no reasonably priced cafes to be found so we made do with the drinks we carried and probably did our health good by fasting!

After a good rest on the grass by the river we set off again towards Grassington and turned here to pass through Cracoe and Winterburn to get to Settle. Settle was crowded with motorcycles, bikes and tourists in the lovely sunshine, a real tourist trap. One rider was looking in his small sports tank which seemed to be running a little low and hoped to find some petrol here but the station was being rebuilt and was not in operation. We were told by a local that the nearest petrol was in Ingleton or Skipton. So a decision on the route home had to be made

It was decided that the members from Lancaster and Morecambe would leave us at the A65 and travel up to Ingleton where there is a garage and then home from there. The others followed John across the A65 and on to Tosside where a slight navigation error was made, but after retracing our route for a couple of miles back to Tosside we ended up on the right road to Slaidburn for our final rest stop and some nice fruit cake.

After the rest stop the two riders from north of the Ribble decided that when we reached Newton in Bowland we would head back via Dunsop Bridge, Whitewell and Chipping to get to Broughton, whilst the others headed for Waddington and Clitheroe to get back to the A59 and home.

It was a thoroughly lovely day out on the bikes with wall to wall sunshine and warm breezes through some of the most scenic parts of the Yorkshire and Lancashire countryside.

As we rode the last miles home heading into the bright sun, which by now was getting lower in the sky, visibility was sometimes a problem as we had to adjust to flashing bright patches and shade under trees and back into bright sun again, but driving sensibly we arrived home safe.

Thanks to John for a lovely scenic route.

I clocked 150 miles home to home.