West London Branch Chase the Whippets Oop North.


At the beginning of May, twelve HOWLers travelled up North for a week’s riding in the Yorkshire Dales and beyond.

A cottage to hold nine of us had been chosen (John used his campervan as did Sean and Jan) and the Sainsbury order for supplies put in.

On Saturday the gang arrived in dribs and drabs and eventually the Sainsbury order arrived with much needed supplies. Meanwhile Jon S and John F had biked over to Burnley to see the Clarets in action against Villa. 

Sunday we all went for a mooch around the Lake District having met up with the Lakes and Coast members Mike Bell and Steve Robinson and Steve Davenport and some of the Manchester gang at Devil’s Bridge.

After a slight bit of off roading down a farm track we eventually ended up in a farm yard – I can’t imagine what the farmer thought!  We hastily turned round and bumped our way back onto the main road and then had a lovely ride through some great scenery with a brief stop at Silverdale, and then onto the Bluebird Café at Coniston.

We then invaded Peter Steen’s garden for a lovely BBQ in the afternoon sun. Many thanks Peter. Later in the week our numbers were swelled further when John F’s brother-in-law Peter Brown and sister Carol joined us.

After this we rode every day and worked our way through a number of pre-planned and not planned rides in various groups. It was very much – ’We are going here if any one fancies joining us’.

Between us we covered a great deal of the Yorkshire Dales encountering many hump-backed bridges and twisty roads as well as sheep jams, cow jams and kamikaze lambs! The various groups also tackled the Lake District passes of which there is some excellent video footage. And visited a number of biker haunts – Devils Bridge and Riverbank Tearooms in Slaidburn.

All in all a fabulous week and the weather was great – we are now planning next year’s Branch holiday….

The location of the cottage was excellent – it was within walking distance of two pubs and had secure parking. And was extremely well equipped.

I have never been to the Dales before but I would heartily recommend it if you love challenging roads, great scenery and not many people! If anyone is interested I am happy to let you know where we stayed – it slept ten people and had secure parking and was near a bar made famous by Jeremy Clarkson.(Simonstone Hall) and a great Pub – The Green Dragon Inn in Hardraw which was an atmospheric and very friendly country pub with bunk room accommodation for £25 pp and a waterfall in the back garden.