Surrey Byways

Ever wanted to ride the byways of Surrey?

Well you can and there are plenty of them….if you know where to find them. After riding the Hafren Ray a few weeks ago I was itching to get out again, so I sent my pal Chris, whom I met at the rally a message about going for a ride and he invited a few more people and I invited a few more people and before long there were nine of us up for a Saturday ride around the Surrey lanes.

car park, all clean and shiny….kinda

We met up at the Rykers Cafe, near Box Hill, and had some breakfast whilst talking bikes and getting to know each other a little. The adventure bike riding scene in the UK seems to be quite small and everyone knows someone who knows someone, and being in the age of social media, people meet up online way before they meet up in real life, so the transition between online persona and chat was slowly making it’s presence known in the real world. I like observing it. it’s a 21C thing. Anyway, I digress.

We discussed routes and levels of difficulty with one main chalk descent being the only real problem we might encounter along the way that day. There was a way around for those who didn’t want to do it. Soon after we were out on the road with Chris leading the pack to the first lane of the day.

Pit Stop

We had a good mix of bikes with varied engine size, a KTM, BMW, HONDA & YAMAHA, which was good because the lanes are the same, but the bikes were different. How would they handle?

fag break

For me the first few hundred metres of tracks are always the hardest. That transition from road to off road, the balance, the feel, the standing up and power on the back wheel, it’s alien for a road rider, but then I remember I’ve done this before and it’s okay! Yes, I might crash, but I’ll have fun doing it! The lanes were a mixture of mud, & leaves with lots of good ruts, rubble, sand and chalk, slippery chalk. The ground was still pretty wet from the previous weeks rain and it’s Autumn so it was as expected and going was good.

Rein & Pete

 

3 bikes all with Anlas CapraX Tyres
Chalk, slippery chalk…

We had a good mix of bikes with varied engine size, a KTM, BMW, HONDA & YAMAHA, which was good because the lanes are the same, but the bikes were different. How would they handle?

fag break

For me the first few hundred metres of tracks are always the hardest. That transition from road to off road, the balance, the feel, the standing up and power on the back wheel, it’s alien for a road rider, but then I remember I’ve done this before and it’s okay! Yes, I might crash, but I’ll have fun doing it! The lanes were a mixture of mud, & leaves with lots of good ruts, rubble, sand and chalk, slippery chalk. The ground was still pretty wet from the previous weeks rain and it’s Autumn so it was as expected and going was good.

Rein & Pete

I was hoping not to crash or have any falls this time around, but that wasn’t to be, but at least I wasn’t the first, that was done by Aton riding the HP2, the rut span him into a mud wall and dinged the bike a bit, breaking off part of the Barkbusters from the handlebars.

I stopped and helped him pick the bike up and we got going again, soon catching up with the rest of the group.

3 bikes all with Anlas CapraX Tyres

The byways were fun and putting a huge smile on my face as I rode through them.

We came upon one point where we had to do a steep downhill slope on chalk. Not good for those who don’t want to come off their bikes, so for those who didn’t there was an alternative way around, for those that did we carried on! I was going well at first, keeping the traction as best I could and trying to ride in the ruts, but eventually the chalk got the better of me and I slipped off to the right and went over! Just a little knock, but the first of the day, but not the last on the chalk downhill! I went over one more time a few feet down and after that found my feet and got down without anymore offs.

Group photo after the chalk ascent.

At the bottom of the chalk, Chris noticed that his handlebars were out of line with his forks, so it was a tools out time, loosen the yolk bolts and spindle, bounce the bike on the brakes and straighten out the bars again! Easy job and on the road again. We rode on taking in more fun trails and stopped for a bite of lunch at the Newlands Corner Cafe which had some amazing views over Surrey.

Great bunch of dudes to ride with.

After lunch we did more of the same riding, some of lanes were really wide and had some lovely twists and turns. We eventually ended up at a chalk ascent which tested a few of us again. I gave a few of the others a hand up with their bikes as tiredness was kicking in and these bikes are not light! We finished up the day at the Rykers Cafe again near Box Hill and talked shit for a while over a hot cup of coffee before heading home to warm up after a great fun days riding!

You can see an edited video of the ride here with all the crashes and fun we had!

 

Thanks for reading! Get out there and ride!

 

 

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