Winter hasn’t quite left yet!
A group of five riders met at beautiful Ogden Water on a Sunday morning that promised beautiful sunshine. For this ride, we were fortunate enough to have some local knowledge in the form of Adam Pridmore from EBCC who has ridden this particular area in pretty much every weather from sunshine to snow!
After a brief discussion of the most important ride details (cafe stop!) we headed out onto the moor. After a quick flurry over the dam, we climbed steadily up a rough, cobbled climb which got the legs warmed up very quickly indeed. A brief road section past the windmills brought us to the Yorkshire Water permissive trail which cuts across onto the Hebden Bridge road. By this point, it was clear that the weather wasn’t going to stay sunny all day and the skies darkened alarmingly as we climbed to the top of the moor and descended down to the Calder Aire Link trail.
This particular trail has some excellent descents – loose, rocky dirt, cobbles and no mud – so we all pointed our bikes downhill and went for it!
Dropping down into Oxenhope via Stairs Lane, we headed up a short, steep climb onto Black Moor. This was a cracking trail, with dry, sandy trails and some interesting technical sections. After a short, impromptu coaching session on pedal position (sorry everyone – tell me to shut up next time!) we rode down a sharply rutted trail and, via a final single-track descent, finished the first section of the ride at the lovely Coldspring Mill cafe.
Fortified with lunch, we climbed back onto the moor and started the long climb back to the top. This section included some challenging rocky obstacles and a sharp, gravel climb to the summit which, inevitably, became a competition as to who could get the furthest up. Results will be published and points assigned later in the week…
The final section of the ride was a technical, moorland crossing with a vast number of different options available. This proved to be a favourite and everyone had a great time trying to find a route without dabbing or (worst case) rolling over the bars. I might have failed in the latter…
The last descent to Ogden was a cheerful affair with everyone agreeing that it had been a great ride and, frankly astonishing that we didn’t get soaked on the way around!
Duration: 2.5 hours (moving time)
Weather: Dry (much to our surprise!)