Ride Report: Whiteways Loop, 21 Jan 07

22 01 2007

Mud, Glorious Mud!

Good old Sussex clay, glooped up by lashings of rain the night before and given texture by the tree detritus blown down during the storms on Thursday. All of which provided a challenging mix of Mother Nature’s obstacles for the Muddy@rsers to negotiate around this loop at Whiteways. What an excellent loop it was too…

Starting from the car park – famous for its motorbike meets which we massively outnumbered, 34 Muddy@rsers in total and not an engine between us! – we headed straight onto the woodland singletrack.

Tumbled trees crossed the first few tracks, interesting lines were found to get round / over, not a good time to fiddle with your GPS (eh Rick!). More rooty, slippy singletrack followed putting smiles on faces and got our blood pumping.

After a quick trailside fix (broken chain), a re-group at the dodgy road crossing saw layers removed and plenty of chatting going on. Here we split into two manageable groups. Next came a deceiving little climb that made your legs burn and the slick chalky surface challenged the grip of some of the best rubber on the market. More flowing singletrack along the ridge (with the odd 8” log manoeuvre thrown in) and into a smile inducing fast doubletrack decent, and more mud, the thick claggy kind that sticks !

Re-group again, quick cake munch, then up a short road climb, then even more mud (definitely the theme for the day). This was comical mud, the type so thick and sticky you can barely go forward and manages to lock up just about everything on your bike. Plenty of sticks were used to free up bike bits here. Nasty … but fun J

Out onto the South Downs into streaming sunshine and a tail wind that got us up the deceiving climb along the ancient Roman Road ‘Stane Street’. A climb with mystical powers, doesn’t look that steep but is a killer every time. After a rest and more chat, a quick blip onto the Monarch’s Way, then off again into the woods for even more rooty, slippy, muddy, twisty, exhilarating singletrack. All topped off with a 30ft drop in, woo hoo what a buzz ! What a ride….what a day….

The ride finished off at the car park with tea, maltloaf (thanks Mike) and big smiles all round. Hope you enjoyed the day, it was all thanks to Muddy@rser Mike (founder of MTB Nomads blog linked right) who generously shared his trail knowledge and time to lead us round. We will be back in the summer when hopefully the trails will be nice and dry so keep your eyes peeled on our events calendar for dates.

Happy biking! Lisa

Lisa (Club Founder) descending

The original Whiteways post can be found here.

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