muddy ride report

Check out this (only slightly doctored) picture from the Muddy Muni Weekend, Joe Rowing looking well Extreme Dudeish heading straight down an incredibly steep slippery muddy hill, we could hardly walk up it.

Saturday’s ride was wicked, turned a bit epic in the end, 6 hours riding time, we rode or tried to ride everything from ridiculous downhill to technical singletrack and some serious bombholes.

More pictures to come after todays ride…



You must be at and extreme north or south location. The vegetation is all growing at an angle toward the sun. :slight_smile:


Re: muddy ride report

yoopers <> wrote:
> You must be at and extreme north or south location. The vegetation is
> all growing at an angle toward the sun. :slight_smile:

Joe and Joe were riding in surrey, on the hills just along from my parents
place, and I can confirm that so steep are the slopes and so stiff the
prevailing brezzes, that photo was barely doctored and the plants round
there really do grow at that angle. They start out straight, but a
combination of wind presure and relentless mud creep down the hill means
they end up leaning over like that.

Sundays riding was good too. 6 of us tackled the single track round , up
and down leith hill. Some of it is very new just been built trail that
Joes been working on, some of it was not quite so muddy. Mostly it was
wet and slipperry. We got the pub so covered in mud that those who didn’t
have clean trousers in the car had to take in something to sit on as the
land lord wouldn’t like mud on the seats. Mud splatter from heel to hip,
was the order of the day. Both Joes had very fetching mud smears acoss
their faces too.

I have a few pics, but havn’t done anything with them yet.

2nd Darmstadt International Unicycle Hockey Tournament
Nov 30th - Dec. 1st 2002

We were at the extreme north downs in the UK. The trees grow like that because they’re trying to escape the pollution from London.

Actually the undoctored photo is at along with a few other ones.

Here’s a proper little ride report for saturday,

Saturday morning, we get up at 8.30, look out the window, the weathers looking great. Cold (in UK terms anyway), but not cold enough to freeze the mud up, a nasty wind, a little bit of drizzle. Perfect muni weather indeed. So off we head, deciding to be lazy, park up the top of the hill at Ranmore Common to start off with. We discover that some kind soul has left money in the parking machine for us, today luck is truly on our side. Given our excess of fortune, there’s nothing to do but head out onto the trails. Five minutes later we’re at the top of a steep muddy slope, heading down through the woods. So down the hill we go, first UPDs of the day as we discover just quite how hard it is to slide a steep hill in the mud. Whoosh down, over some beautifully smooth little dropoffs only to fall off just after them as always. After several dismounts we get to the bottom and head off along a long wide muddy track. Quite soon we get bored of the muddy flat track and a narrow singletrack that heads straight up the hill offers the chance for more downhill. We have to work hard to gain gravity karma here, it’s hard work walking up, the path is slippy and muddy and pretty steep. Ten minutes to walk up, a bit over a minute to get down, it somehow seems unfair, but definately worth it really. Funnily enough 5 seconds off the bottom, my mobile rings, so I finish riding down and answer the phone and it’s Sarah and Paul saying they’re coming out on tomorrow’s ride.

At this point I refuse any requests to ride more downhill here because we’ve got some wicked trails coming up and more importantly we want to get to the snack shop in Peaslake for lunch and it’s a decent ride away. So off we pootle round some field edge paths, some easy single track, over a few little bumpy hills to the highest point of the ride, Holmbury Hill fort. In summer this is a beautiful viewpoint where you can see for miles, today our view was more limited by mist but still very pretty. We meet a mountain biker here, turns out he lives where we’ve just come from and knows all the trails.

Anyway, by now we’re hungry for some snackery and whilst a lone dog seems tempting, the snack shop in Peaslake is located 100 metres from the end of a long technical trail, Reservoir Dogs which starts from here. We head off down Reservoir Dogs, the going is muddy but not too bad, I’m slowed down by fear for my life on the bombholes and several big dropoffs, of which I manage to clear one out of five, whilst Joe Rowing with characteristic fearlessnes / stupidity rolls over them like he’s riding in a flat sports hall. Twenty minutes later it’s big fat grins again as we finish this wicked technical trail and get to the snack shop for huge sandwiches and samosas. We meet another few mountain bikers here, it’s got a well deserved reputation as a wicked place to grab a quick lunch on a ride.

Refueled and raring to go, off we ride back up to the top of Holmbury Hill, via some rather indirect single track paths that seem tempting. Now it’s time for the big scary thing of the ride, the Bombholes. This is a whole bunch of bombholes one after the other, there are about 15-20 in all and the first few are pretty big. Whilst I chicken out of most of them, Joe R performs a splendidly acrobatic fall coming down a big one, landing on his back. We decide not to ride the last few because they’re full of water and head down to the top of telegraph hill. This is a long very narrow track that heads along a line of telegraph poles, the first section is muddy, but going onto the next sections we’re really blasting it down this narrow track, this is a definate big grin factor trail.

Now it’s almost five hours into the ride and it’s looking like being dark quite soon, so we really have to ride back, the downhills are still great fun, but the uphills are really not working by now, the area is pretty bumpy and all the mud riding is taking it’s toll. Off we go, back through the woods, passing a rather astonished elderly couple who obviously didn’t expect unicycles on their dogs walk. We’re almost back when it gets too dark to ride without lights so we light up and unashamedly walk up the last hill.

This was an absolutely epic ride, mostly because I had lots of different options for trail to ride, expecting a shorter ride and then we went out and rode all them and more.

and a ride report for sunday…

Sunday’s ride was planned to be a bit more relaxed, centred around a pub which I know does great big yummy lunches. We head out to the start point to discover it’s misty and icy cold. Undeterred by that, a team of six intrepid unicyclists arrive and prepare themselves for the ride.

For the start of the ride I’ve planned a big uphill to warm everyone up. We all try riding up the hill, but only Paul Selwood manages it to the top. After this we head off through the woods quickly because it’s jolly cold, to the top of Summer Lightning, a newly built trail which I had a hand in building along with another 30 (bike) riders from the area. Now I’m slightly biased here, but I think it’s an incredible trail for unicycling, it’s twisty, tricky and well built, so well drained even in winter so not too muddy.

At the end of the first section, which is mainly flattish with berms and little ups and downs and humps, we all fall off at a particularly innocent looking little root dropoff followed by a very tight corner, part of a design feature we put in to slow people down before they cross a shared track, basically by pointing the rider straight at a tree so they have to slow down to avoid hitting it.

Fortunately, at the end of this section, everyone agreed that it was fantastic so off we headed down the next section, this is on the edge of the hill heading slowly down, it weaves around trees and gets a lot more difficult than the first section. I rode part of this section behind Luke, 11 who was riding incredibly fast on his Onza 20" and putting us to shame on this quite technical trail section.

The next section is a smooth rolling track through the trees, without anywhere near as many difficult bits, this was a great blast although not without the inevitable UPDs.

After this, the trail hasn’t been built properly and gets a bit muddy, after trying one section, we headed off down a bigger track on route to Simon’s Copse. During this brief but quite muddy part of the ride, someone I shall not name (Sarah) postulated a measurement of muddyness known as the Marshall factor and some sections on this reached well into the tens of Marshalls, it was fun trying to ride them and many falls occured on this section. This was followed by a nice downhill, which goes through a twitten, where it was dark and you couldn’t tell what you were riding.

From this we headed up to the top of Leith Hill, the highest point in Surrey at a heady 1000 feet above sea level, a long rocky climb led us there. At the top of the hill, we saw the large castle like tower which was built on top of the hill by a king to make his hill bigger than someone elses hill! Hungry as always, we blasted down the steep downhill from the tower and rode all the way back to the pub for a nice big pub meal.

But aha, it wasn’t over yet, after the meal, Joe Rowing and I were not dead yet, so we just had to head back to the Tower to ride the short rocky rooty downhill from it and then over to Summer Lightning to ride it again. This was done at high speed, which made the trail a very different beast, easier in parts, but more difficult in most and led to somewhat more painful crashes, but much much higher grin factor.

All in all, a wicked weekend and I’ll definately run another one sometime. Thanks to everyone who came and if you didn’t, you missed a really great one.

Wow - what a weekend.

Epic ride on saturday - complete with BIG dismounts and much pain. I strongly recomend not diving into trees or diving into bombholes face-first.

Cool ride on sun - particularly me heading at max speed past Joe, who slowed up and shouted “mind the fence”
I was forced to save my teeth in a most un-graceful panic dismount. Close, very close.

I can recomend joe’s summer lightening - It rocks, it’s nice and technical to keep it interesting whilst not savage enough to lunch you if it goes wrong.
What’s more it seems to work at almost any speed.

Altogether it was a completely insane weekend and we scared legions of cyclists.

Thanks Joe

P.S. That slope was insanely steep- right on the limits of traction - I think I slid half of it.
The photo was taken on the shallower bit on out walk up, I couldn’t resist it.

Pictures here, thanks joe

I’ve posted a ride report too on