Yet Another Cycling Forum

General Category => Audax => Topic started by: αdαmsκι on 24 February, 2021, 06:43:34 pm

Title: ACH The Way to the Sea 200 from Greenwich 3/7/2021
Post by: αdαmsκι on 24 February, 2021, 06:43:34 pm
Now seems a good enough time to advertise a new Audax Club Hackney ride that's been in the planning during the various lockdowns.

"The Way to the Sea (https://audax.uk/event-details?eventId=8909)" is a new 200 km ride that starts in Greenwich and visits some of the coastal areas of Kent. The ride leaves Greenwich via Shooters Hill and the pretty village centre of Bexley. After ~15 km the urban sprawl of London is over. The first control will be the Tesco in Meopham before the route descends to the Hoo Peninsula. This is where Charles Dickens set some of "Great Expectations". This is what he said about the area: it is a "dark flat wilderness beyond the churchyard, intersected with dykes and mounds and gates, with scattered cattle feeding on it, was the marshes; and that the low leaden line beyond, was the river; and that the distant savage lair from which the wind was rushing, was the sea". Hopefully in July the sun will be out.

The ride heads all the way across the Hoo Peninsula to a control on the Isle of Grain at the Co-op. From there to the next control, in Minster it's ~6.5 km in a straight line across the Medway Estuary, but it's 50 km on the road back across the Hoo Peninsula, through historic Rochester and crossing the Swale at the Kingsferry Bridge onto the Isle of Sheppey. The Kingsferry Bridge is a vertical-lift bridge that is still in operation to allow boats to sail along the Swale. It'll be down to luck if anyone has an enforced rest at this point. The Minster control will be overlooking the sea with an ACH spread of food and goodies.

After the ACH control the ride returns to the mainland, again using the Kingsferry Bridge, and what follows is a lumpy section across the North Downs to get back to Greenwich. At times the ride is within 1 km of the M2 and yet sticks to some typically tiny Kentish lanes. After climbing over the North Downs the ride drops down to the River Medway and then climbs over the North Downs for a second time.

The final control is West Kingsdown (Co-op), after which it is a pretty easy ride back into London via picturesque Eynsford. Hopefully by July the COVID situation will be OK to allow the ride to finish at one of the riverside pubs in Greenwich.

It's definitely a ride of two parts, with the flat coastal scenery for the first 140 km, followed by a hilly section over the North Downs on the way back to London. The rewards are wonderful coastal views, big skies, visits to lesser known parts of Kent, and beautiful country lanes.

The ride is planned for Saturday 3rd July. Entries are currently planned to open in early May to avoid having to refund anyone if COVID restrictions change between now and July.

There'll be a routesheet and .gpx file published nearer the time once the route has been finalised. For the moment here's the outline:

(https://pbs.twimg.com/media/EtO2jgfXcAMJdyP?format=jpg)

Title: Re: ACH "The Way to the Sea" 200 from Greenwich 3/7/2021
Post by: citoyen on 24 February, 2021, 07:34:35 pm
That looks like a most excellent route. :thumbsup:
Title: Re: ACH "The Way to the Sea" 200 from Greenwich 3/7/2021
Post by: tomj on 24 February, 2021, 08:37:48 pm
And a control on my front door!
Title: Re: ACH "The Way to the Sea" 200 from Greenwich 3/7/2021
Post by: Redlight on 24 February, 2021, 09:01:42 pm
Looks lovely - apart from the diversion on to Sheppey, that's pretty much the same as one of my days out during lockdown. I hope the horrible roadworks around the bridge at Rochester are completed by July. 
Title: Re: ACH "The Way to the Sea" 200 from Greenwich 3/7/2021
Post by: jsabine on 24 February, 2021, 09:03:32 pm
A ride starting close to home is always good, especially when it's not a gratuitously hilly one
Title: Re: ACH "The Way to the Sea" 200 from Greenwich 3/7/2021
Post by: αdαmsκι on 24 February, 2021, 09:45:08 pm
@tomj: Some of those are info controls.

Meopham: Tesco
Cliffe: Info
Isle of Grain: Co-op
Minster: Audax club Hackney
Burham: Info
West Kingston: Co-op
Swanley: Info

@Redlight 🤞 about the road works

@jsabine Yeah it isn't gratuitously hilly, but as I say there's a hilly section. Tho if it's windy....
Title: Re: ACH "The Way to the Sea" 200 from Greenwich 3/7/2021
Post by: grams on 24 February, 2021, 10:14:42 pm
A ride starting close to home is always good, especially when it's not a gratuitously hilly one

It's an ACH ride involving Kent. Bring gears.
Title: Re: ACH "The Way to the Sea" 200 from Greenwich 3/7/2021
Post by: αdαmsκι on 24 February, 2021, 10:34:01 pm
Here's the elevation profile

(https://i.ibb.co/12cKrhR/Screenshot-20210224-222522.jpg)

(If it doesn't load click here: https://i.ibb.co/12cKrhR/Screenshot-20210224-222522.jpg)
Title: Re: ACH "The Way to the Sea" 200 from Greenwich 3/7/2021
Post by: jsabine on 24 February, 2021, 11:04:02 pm
A ride starting close to home is always good, especially when it's not a gratuitously hilly one

It's an ACH ride involving Kent. Bring gears.

There's a difference between a route that's a nice one and happens to be hilly, and one that's been designed to seek out every hill going, and happens to be nice.

I'm focussing on the words 'hilly section.'
Title: Re: ACH "The Way to the Sea" 200 from Greenwich 3/7/2021
Post by: Redlight on 26 February, 2021, 11:58:45 am

There's a difference between a route that's a nice one and happens to be hilly, and one that's been designed to seek out every hill going, and happens to be nice.

I'm focussing on the words 'hilly section.'

A windy day on the Isle of Grain and you might as well be climbing Alpe D'Huez  :facepalm:
Title: Re: ACH "The Way to the Sea" 200 from Greenwich 3/7/2021
Post by: citoyen on 26 February, 2021, 12:10:47 pm
Here's the elevation profile

Am I right in thinking that big spike near the end is Birling Hill?

One of my favourites... I hate it.
Title: Re: ACH "The Way to the Sea" 200 from Greenwich 3/7/2021
Post by: αdαmsκι on 26 February, 2021, 12:28:02 pm
Yip Birling Hill :thumbsup:
Title: Re: ACH "The Way to the Sea" 200 from Greenwich 3/7/2021
Post by: cygnet on 27 February, 2021, 02:57:20 pm
Looks good αdαmsκι
I did a version of Greenwich-Grain-Sheppey last year as part of my tour of the SE isles (except I forgot Thanet  :facepalm:)
The Kingsferry bridge is impressive
(https://live.staticflickr.com/65535/50983755632_da3b29fa17.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/2kFg5iw)
Bridges of the Day (https://flic.kr/p/2kFg5iw)
Title: Re: ACH "The Way to the Sea" 200 from Greenwich 3/7/2021
Post by: Tommyp27 on 27 February, 2021, 06:50:58 pm
I won't be able to do this one this year, but if it runs again in the future when I can stay with and maybe ride this with friends from South London I can see myself signing up.
Title: Re: ACH "The Way to the Sea" 200 from Greenwich 3/7/2021
Post by: αdαmsκι on 27 February, 2021, 07:20:43 pm
Cheers @cygnet; the bridges are quite impressive. Tho could suck wasting time if one is unlucky and the bridge is up! The Isles of the SE sounds like it could make a good 400(?).
(PS: hope you're well.)

@Tommyp27 I know it hasn't happened once yet but certainly envision it running in the future too, tho probably earlier in the year when life is a bit more normal.
Title: Re: ACH "The Way to the Sea" 200 from Greenwich 3/7/2021
Post by: citoyen on 27 February, 2021, 08:01:45 pm
could suck wasting time if one is unlucky and the bridge is up!

AIUI there's a very limited window for when the channel is navigable1 - a few hours either side of high tide, or something. And according to the tide tables2, high tide on 3rd July is 7.58am and 8.12pm, so it seems extremely unlikely that the bridge will be up when riders are passing through on the day.

1. for the kind of boats that need the bridge lifting
2. the ones I found on the internet just now, so I don't know how reliable
Title: Re: ACH "The Way to the Sea" 200 from Greenwich 3/7/2021
Post by: αdαmsκι on 27 February, 2021, 08:04:58 pm
That's fortuitous well planned about the bridge ;).
Title: Re: ACH "The Way to the Sea" 200 from Greenwich 3/7/2021
Post by: trickedem on 01 March, 2021, 08:54:47 am
Looks Good. Let me know if you need any local knowledge on the section through Strood, so you can avoid main roads. 
The Isle of Grain is a delight. Although it is likely you will have a headwind on part of it.
Title: Re: ACH "The Way to the Sea" 200 from Greenwich 3/7/2021
Post by: αdαmsκι on 01 March, 2021, 10:52:20 am
Veloboy and I rode this yesterday. We set off from Greenwich in mist that just got thicker as we went up Shooters Hill and it was pretty bad around Meopham as well. It was a cold easterly wind too, but we made progress. Work on a railway bridge just before Meopham caused a re-route partly along an unsealed track, but as this was a fraudax (™ Deano) controls didn't matter.

We dropped down to the Hoo Peninsula and the busy road into Cliffe meant I'll do a tiny tweak of the route that'll add ~100 m to the overall distance. The ride across the Hoo Peninsula was into a stiff, cold, headwind.

(https://i.ibb.co/CtWGfPd/IMG-20210228-100928.jpg)

It's a big, wide, road across the Isle of Grain and through all the industrial areas where the UK's supply of gas comes onshore. It's a surreal area, rather than postcard picturesque. At least the sun was making an appearance, lighting up the massive silos.

(https://i.ibb.co/5RqJ0Ks/IMG-20210228-111200.jpg)

The ride back across the Isle of Grain and the Hoo Peninsula was with a strong tailwind with more and more sun appearing. The approach to Strood is difficult to route in order to avoid the A228. We went via Upper Upnor and the cyclepath that pops out near the Black Widow Submarine (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Submarine_U-475_Black_Widow).

The ride through Rochester and beyond was a bit busy and a bit annoying, not helped by the stiff headwind meaning it was hard work and slow going. However there's not a lot of other route options. The wind continued as we crossed onto the Isle of Sheppey. We stopped at a takeaway cafe on Minster beach and shivered as we stood around eating.

Minster feels like it's halfway, but is in fact beyond the halfway point (117 km there and 90 km on the way back). With a tailwind we were able to make quick progress across the Isle of Sheppey, although another road closure just after Iwade was frustrating. This time it was a static caravan parked on a lane making it absolutely impossible to pass. Hopefully it'll be gone by July!

(https://i.ibb.co/njGd6yB/Screenshot-2021-03-01-at-10-35-35.png)

The ride back through Kentish lanes with the sun out was fantastic, and in contrast to the more urban first part of the ride. This was also most definitely the hilliest section. The first pass over the North Downs was a relatively gently affair, but the cimb up Birling Hill was tough. From Vigo Village there were still a few more uphill pitches, but the worst was done. And the reward was a stunning view of London on the approach to Stansted Village. 

After the final control in West Kingsdown we plunged down Knats Valley, crossed the River Darent at Eynsford, via the bridge rather than the ford, (https://www.google.co.uk/maps/@51.36816,0.2106053,3a,75y,136.58h,93.11t/data=!3m7!1e1!3m5!1sE1IaiHD66YwJKIHSgCWuDA!2e0!6s%2F%2Fgeo0.ggpht.com%2Fcbk%3Fpanoid%3DE1IaiHD66YwJKIHSgCWuDA%26output%3Dthumbnail%26cb_client%3Dmaps_sv.tactile.gps%26thumb%3D2%26w%3D203%26h%3D100%26yaw%3D98.144295%26pitch%3D0%26thumbfov%3D100!7i13312!8i6656) and did the final really noticeable climb out of the Darenth Valley to cross the M25. The approach to Greenwich involved ~12 km of urban riding but there weren't too many traffic lights for suburban London. Home before the need to dig out the light :thumbsup:
Title: Re: ACH "The Way to the Sea" 200 from Greenwich 3/7/2021
Post by: citoyen on 01 March, 2021, 11:04:45 am
Isle of Grain ... a surreal area, rather than postcard picturesque.

You're not wrong there. The Grain Battery Tower is worth a look while you're there - if you continue through the village, the trail eventually brings you out by the tower, and if the tide is out you can walk along the causeway for a closer look, with the Sheppey docks in the background, a short but ill-advised swim away.

(https://live.staticflickr.com/65535/50991851238_ea9d61491d.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/2kFYyQW)
Title: Re: ACH "The Way to the Sea" 200 from Greenwich 3/7/2021
Post by: telstarbox on 11 March, 2021, 10:36:28 pm
Grain and Sheppey in one ride - definitely the Garden of England :)
Title: Re: ACH "The Way to the Sea" 200 from Greenwich 3/7/2021
Post by: Frank9755 on 23 March, 2021, 06:53:25 pm
Look forward to this.
I lived near Cliffe when I was young and spent many an hour riding round the Hoo Peninsula lanes. The hill into high Halstow was always a big challenge, on a 3-speed on which the gears often slipped.
Never been to Sheppy though, would be interesting to see it.
Title: Re: ACH "The Way to the Sea" 200 from Greenwich 3/7/2021
Post by: αdαmsκι on 08 May, 2021, 09:43:59 am
Entries are now open.

https://audax.uk/event-details?eventId=8909&Evno=21-485
Title: Re: ACH "The Way to the Sea" 200 from Greenwich 3/7/2021
Post by: citoyen on 08 May, 2021, 10:20:23 am
Entries are now open.

https://audax.uk/event-details?eventId=8909&Evno=21-485

No dithering about this one... I'm in!

So that means I have slightly under two months to get fit enough to ride 200km. Hmmm!
Title: Re: ACH "The Way to the Sea" 200 from Greenwich 3/7/2021
Post by: Redlight on 08 May, 2021, 02:43:38 pm
No dithering about this one... I'm in!

So that means I have slightly under two months to get fit enough to ride 200km. Hmmm!

I'm in too, but will have the chance to test my legs on the Hop Garden 200 tomorrow. If I'm not fit enough to ride a 200 by July, I'm in big trouble!
Title: Re: ACH "The Way to the Sea" 200 from Greenwich 3/7/2021
Post by: bhoot on 08 May, 2021, 03:57:49 pm
I have entered...first calendar ride since Jan 2020. No idea whether I can ride that far still! I've offered to route check, having figured out I can do that in two rides with some train assistance if necessary, while I test me and my bike.
Title: Re: ACH "The Way to the Sea" 200 from Greenwich 3/7/2021
Post by: Lightning Phil on 08 May, 2021, 06:41:02 pm
I have entered...first calendar ride since Jan 2020. No idea whether I can ride that far still! I've offered to route check, having figured out I can do that in two rides with some train assistance if necessary, while I test me and my bike.

Not on the tandem?
Title: Re: ACH "The Way to the Sea" 200 from Greenwich 3/7/2021
Post by: citoyen on 08 May, 2021, 10:58:15 pm
first calendar ride since Jan 2020

It will be my first since Feb 2019. See you at the back of the field!
Title: Re: ACH "The Way to the Sea" 200 from Greenwich 3/7/2021
Post by: Frank9755 on 10 May, 2021, 01:45:14 pm
Too slow!  Already full.
Hope it goes well.
Title: Re: ACH "The Way to the Sea" 200 from Greenwich 3/7/2021
Post by: LittleWheelsandBig on 10 May, 2021, 01:54:17 pm
We found that last night. Such is life!
Title: Re: ACH "The Way to the Sea" 200 from Greenwich 3/7/2021
Post by: grams on 10 May, 2021, 02:02:17 pm
I suspect more places will be released once AUK updates its Covid guidance.
Title: Re: ACH "The Way to the Sea" 200 from Greenwich 3/7/2021
Post by: bhoot on 10 May, 2021, 02:14:58 pm
Also there may be others like me who have an entry but are likely to help on the day and so potentially free up a space.
Title: Re: ACH "The Way to the Sea" 200 from Greenwich 3/7/2021
Post by: αdαmsκι on 10 May, 2021, 03:16:25 pm
Yes, I am hoping there'll be more spaces from either:

a) Changes to AUK COVID policy as the event is running July after the government claim there'll be no more restrictions.....
b) People will bhoot who offer to help, and people changing their mind

Title: Re: ACH "The Way to the Sea" 200 from Greenwich 3/7/2021
Post by: Tynan2 on 04 June, 2021, 02:35:00 pm
Yes, I was about to post that I am definitely at the dithering stage so I look forward to a relaxing of the restrictions, given we are allowed to sit in pubs with utter unknown strangers, restricting rider on 200km ride seems a bit stingy. Standing by, maybe, perhaps, possibly.
Title: Re: ACH "The Way to the Sea" 200 from Greenwich 3/7/2021
Post by: αdαmsκι on 14 June, 2021, 09:01:27 pm
I'd been hoping I would be able to open this event up to more riders but as the end of lockdown has been pushed back that won't be happening. It also means it'll be groups of six setting off at 10 minute intervals.

There will be a routecheck happening on Saturday, after which I'll send out information on the starting groups, plus gpx files and route sheet.
Title: Re: ACH "The Way to the Sea" 200 from Greenwich 3/7/2021
Post by: αdαmsκι on 21 June, 2021, 10:37:14 pm
Email with COVID information, groups, route sheet, gpx etc has just been sent out.
Title: Re: ACH "The Way to the Sea" 200 from Greenwich 3/7/2021
Post by: αdαmsκι on 27 June, 2021, 09:38:22 am
This was said on the email sent out but to reiterate please could anyone who's decided not to ride let me know. Thanks.
Title: Re: ACH "The Way to the Sea" 200 from Greenwich 3/7/2021
Post by: αdαmsκι on 29 June, 2021, 06:50:23 pm
Hopefully not too many people decide to drop out because they'd rather spend their Saturday evening watching the kickball...
Title: Re: ACH "The Way to the Sea" 200 from Greenwich 3/7/2021
Post by: grams on 29 June, 2021, 06:54:51 pm
Are you running a standby list?
Title: Re: ACH "The Way to the Sea" 200 from Greenwich 3/7/2021
Post by: αdαmsκι on 29 June, 2021, 06:55:53 pm
I've got two more people who had asked on standby (tho they haven't replied to the email).

Otherwise at the moment totally full.

However, I am happy to add any more names to the standby list in case of a glut of people changing their mind.
Title: Re: ACH "The Way to the Sea" 200 from Greenwich 3/7/2021
Post by: Redlight on 30 June, 2021, 09:40:53 am

However, I am happy to add any more names to the standby list in case of a glut of people changing their mind.

I hope that any that do have the decency to let you know asap. I've been hearing of large numbers of DNSs at some other events that were full, with waiting lists. It's very inconsiderate to both the organiser and other members who would like to have taken part.
Title: Re: ACH "The Way to the Sea" 200 from Greenwich 3/7/2021
Post by: αdαmsκι on 30 June, 2021, 10:06:24 pm
I've had emails from some people who now cannot ride, which is great and it's meant I've been able to add others who hadn't originally got onto the event.

The ride is now full :thumbsup:. Hopefully no one else drops out because I won't have time to add anyone else to the start list.

Title: Re: ACH "The Way to the Sea" 200 from Greenwich 3/7/2021
Post by: bhoot on 01 July, 2021, 11:33:22 pm
Looking forward to seeing some of you at the start, but I won't be riding as I have already done it twice - once in a two part route check (tandem based) and once as a "proper" helpers ride on solo.

Adam has already mentioned many of the delights of the route but I would just add that I enjoyed the section down to Grain - I've explored most of the Hoo peninsula many times but I had never ventured that far. The road was surprisingly popular with cyclists - and I now see it is a time trial route, presumably on account of being wide, flat, straightish and with not too much motor traffic. On the route check we were not pressed for time - and if you aren't either then it is worth going the extra 0.5km beyond the Co-op to Grain beach as in Adam's photo. From there you can virtually see your next control a mere 6km directly across the sea but 50km by road!

Having had a "never again" visit to Sheppey many years ago when the motor traffic was horrendous, it was wonderful to use the new cycle path, like being in the Netherlands for a blissful kilometre (each way). Don't be tempted to ride on the road and miss this treat - although if there is a car boot sale on, then the road will probably just be a solid traffic jam anyway. And for good measure there is another remarkably good path just after Burham on the way to Peters Village.

Later on there is another "surely I am not still in Kent" moment when you are suddenly transported to New England in a housing development (I didn't check but I suspect it's all plastic!). That is followed shortly by Birling Hill as mentioned by others. I was pleased to get that behind me!

One tip for supplies/refreshment options - before Burham when you are on NCN17 you go behind a petrol station - it does have a shop and a coffee machine which could be handy, otherwise your next opportunity is Costa/McDs at Snodland about 10km further on.
Title: Re: ACH "The Way to the Sea" 200 from Greenwich 3/7/2021
Post by: citoyen on 02 July, 2021, 08:55:37 am
Very much looking forward to this - although I'm hoping the forecast rain holds off.

I've explored various bits of the Hoo peninsula on foot, but never by bike (though various West Kent members OTP regularly ride out that way). Definitely second the recommendation to visit Grain beach - and if the tide is out (low tide tomorrow is about 1.30pm) you can walk all the way along the causeway to the Grain Battery Tower (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Grain_Tower). And from there, it's just a short swim to Sheerness...

Also agreed about the Sheppey cycle path. That road really is horrendous for cycling and the path has made it so much more pleasant.

As an addendum to adamski's email, the Horseshoe & Castle in Cooling purports to be the pub that the Three Jolly Bargemen in Great Expectations is based on, where Jaggers meets Pip for the first time (although the old building burnt down and the current building postdates Dickens).

I'm in the 8.40 start group so don't expect to see many other riders until the finish. My train is due in at Greenwich at 08.17, which is pretty much perfect - time to get a coffee before rolling over to the start.
Title: Re: ACH "The Way to the Sea" 200 from Greenwich 3/7/2021
Post by: αdαmsκι on 02 July, 2021, 10:18:24 am
I am looking forward to getting you all on the road. I started thinking about this route in May last year when I was stuck at home during the first lockdown. It's great is is now happening, and also good to finally organise a ride after having ridden so many over the past 10+ years.

There's a massive pile of food in the corner of my living room having been shopping last night :thumbsup:

I'm hoping the forecast rain holds off.

You and me both or else the Minster control may be a soggy affair.... I have packed umbrellas for the control...


As an addendum to adamski's email, the Horseshoe & Castle in Cooling purports to be the pub that the Three Jolly Bargemen in Great Expectations is based on, where Jaggers meets Pip for the first time (although the old building burnt down and the current building postdates Dickens).

Thanks for that info. Perhaps I should give Dickens another go! Something to do over the summer hols :thumbsup:
Title: Re: ACH "The Way to the Sea" 200 from Greenwich 3/7/2021
Post by: citoyen on 02 July, 2021, 10:35:03 am
I wouldn't bother. Far more interesting to ride to the locations in the books than actually read them. ;D
Title: Re: ACH "The Way to the Sea" 200 from Greenwich 3/7/2021
Post by: αdαmsκι on 02 July, 2021, 02:07:34 pm
https://www.weatherbagel.com/f/36691dd4-9576-4301-801b-7a5e5e11f44f

Not too bad.
Title: Re: ACH "The Way to the Sea" 200 from Greenwich 3/7/2021
Post by: Redlight on 02 July, 2021, 02:08:15 pm

I'm in the 8.40 start group so don't expect to see many other riders until the finish.

I imagine you'll be seeing me (8am start) well before we both get to the Isle of Grain!
Title: Re: ACH "The Way to the Sea" 200 from Greenwich 3/7/2021
Post by: bhoot on 02 July, 2021, 09:01:23 pm
I have just checked the foot tunnel in case anyone is intending to use it to get to Greenwich. Looks like north lift is out of action but south is working.
Title: Re: ACH "The Way to the Sea" 200 from Greenwich 3/7/2021
Post by: citoyen on 03 July, 2021, 06:20:21 am
https://www.weatherbagel.com/f/36691dd4-9576-4301-801b-7a5e5e11f44f

Not too bad.

Forecast is improving all time. :thumbsup:

There’s been heavy rain in east Kent overnight - the lane to the station was partially flooded this morning, but it’s looking like a lovely morning.
Title: Re: ACH "The Way to the Sea" 200 from Greenwich 3/7/2021
Post by: OMIL on 04 July, 2021, 08:44:24 am
This was a great ride, superbly organised. This was the first time I had been given a selection of gpx files. I chose to load the whole route (6500 points) on my Garmin 1030 Plus and it worked really well, trying to correct me only once after I visited the toilet just after the Minster control; Garmin did not seem to recognise this as a valid waypoint.
The distances were spot on. I chose the e-brevet option which avoided the need to keep hold of receipts but which perhaps took a little longer at info controls: getting the phone out, waking up the app, tapping, putting the app back to sleep, putting the phone back etc. This is slightly more time consuming than either making a note of the info or (in time honoured Audax fashion), asking another rider or a volunteer at the next control.
Congratulations to the organiser and all volunteers, and thank to the weather for not implementing the BBC yellow weather warning. No torrential rain as on Tim's ride last week.
Title: ACH "The Way to the Sea" 200 from Greenwich 3/7/2021
Post by: citoyen on 04 July, 2021, 09:46:50 am
Later on there is another "surely I am not still in Kent" moment when you are suddenly transported to New England in a housing development (I didn't check but I suspect it's all plastic!).

OMG! It’s horrendous! They’ve obviously gone to a lot of trouble to create a ’village’ feel (there’s even a village hall!) but it all looks so fake and soulless.

Anyway, what a splendid day out that was. Would like to be fitter so I can properly enjoy the lumpy bits more, but I got round ok. Some lovely new lanes I’ve not ridden before. Had a couple of close passes coming out of Minster (feckin’ Sheppey drivers) but neither they nor the few spells of rain spoiled my enjoyment. Great organisation by My & Mrs adamski and assorted ACH crew.

Would definitely do this one again (although seeing as it comes down to my local territory I’d also be happy to offer my services as a controller/helper, adamski, so let me know if you run it again)
Title: Re: ACH "The Way to the Sea" 200 from Greenwich 3/7/2021
Post by: citoyen on 04 July, 2021, 10:35:34 am
I chose the e-brevet option which avoided the need to keep hold of receipts but which perhaps took a little longer at info controls: getting the phone out, waking up the app, tapping, putting the app back to sleep, putting the phone back etc. This is slightly more time consuming than either making a note of the info or (in time honoured Audax fashion), asking another rider or a volunteer at the next control.

Interesting - that's the opposite of my experience. I had my phone easily accessible in my top tube bag, so was able to whip it out, tap in and be on the move again very quickly.

At the Burham info, I arrived to find another rider already there, scratching his head wondering where the fire hydrant was. I had to point it out to him! But within seconds, I was on my way, leaving him to work out which number he needed to write down.

At Sheepcote Lane, I was with another rider when we arrived at the info. Again, I was checked in and on my way while he was still getting his card out and looking for his pen.

At the commercial controls, eg Grain, the e-brevet was definitely time-saving as it meant no need to queue in the shop to get a receipt (I arrived at Grain just after the Islington posse...).

So I'm completely sold on the e-brevet from a rider's perspective. I'll be interested to see what it's like from an organiser's perspective though.

The only minor issue I had was that when I uploaded the GPX to my Garmin, it stripped out the waypoints so painstakingly placed by adamski, so I wasn't always entirely sure where the controls were. For future reference, I'll make sure I have waypoints in place for controls.
Title: Re: ACH "The Way to the Sea" 200 from Greenwich 3/7/2021
Post by: OMIL on 04 July, 2021, 12:28:38 pm
I'm completely sold on e-brevet too. Obviously I am not as quick at whipping the phone out of my toptube bag as others. I just hope more rides offer this option.
Title: Re: ACH "The Way to the Sea" 200 from Greenwich 3/7/2021
Post by: citoyen on 04 July, 2021, 05:26:28 pm
I've just remembered the weirdest thing I saw yesterday: a pub with its own zoo.

The residents were being very noisy as I rode past.
Title: Re: ACH "The Way to the Sea" 200 from Greenwich 3/7/2021
Post by: jsabine on 04 July, 2021, 05:37:10 pm
You spent quite a bit of time at the pub with a noisy menagerie I thought.

Then you got the train home
Title: Re: ACH "The Way to the Sea" 200 from Greenwich 3/7/2021
Post by: αdαmsκι on 04 July, 2021, 09:12:37 pm
Well that worked a treat.

I knew some of the route was decent but I was a bit worried how much Rochester would detract from the ride.. however all comments are very positive. It seems I'll be running it again 👍 perhaps just having a checkpoint with lots of food overlooking the sea makes up for Rochester 😂

Thanks to all my riders for making the event what it was and the help from loads of people. Definitely a team effort.

Title: Re: ACH "The Way to the Sea" 200 from Greenwich 3/7/2021
Post by: αdαmsκι on 05 July, 2021, 09:02:02 am
(although seeing as it comes down to my local territory I’d also be happy to offer my services as a controller/helper, adamski, so let me know if you run it again)

From what I understand the co-op on the Isle of Grain didn't really cope well with the number of riders turning up on Saturday morning. That was despite having people setting off over 1½ hour spread and there being less than 50 riders on the road.

If When this runs again I imagine there'll be more riders and a smaller spread of times at the start*. Therefore someone stamping cards on Isle of Grain control would be a great help. That would also allow me to move the control to the beach car park https://goo.gl/maps/RL4LAiacbMqzXfwd9 and force everyone out to the coast rather than just turning at the co-op.

* As we discussed, and you mentioned in your thread about start times, I'd look at still having a few waves of people starting, something like 07h40, 08h00 and 08h20 to avoid a whole peloton rolling out from Greenwich together.
Title: Re: ACH "The Way to the Sea" 200 from Greenwich 3/7/2021
Post by: citoyen on 05 July, 2021, 09:20:16 am
From what I understand the co-op on the Isle of Grain didn't really cope well with the number of riders turning up on Saturday morning. That was despite having people setting off over 1½ hour spread and there being less than 50 riders on the road.

If When this runs again I imagine there'll be more riders and a smaller spread of times at the start*. Therefore someone stamping cards on Isle of Grain control would be a great help. That would also allow me to move the control to the beach car park https://goo.gl/maps/RL4LAiacbMqzXfwd9 and force everyone out to the coast rather than just turning at the co-op.

You know, I almost suggested that when you first announced the ride, but selfishly decided I wanted to ride it instead. But as long as I'm available next time, yep, no problem.
Title: Re: ACH "The Way to the Sea" 200 from Greenwich 3/7/2021
Post by: trickedem on 05 July, 2021, 11:18:23 am
(although seeing as it comes down to my local territory I’d also be happy to offer my services as a controller/helper, adamski, so let me know if you run it again)

From what I understand the co-op on the Isle of Grain didn't really cope well with the number of riders turning up on Saturday morning. That was despite having people setting off over 1½ hour spread and there being less than 50 riders on the road.

If When this runs again I imagine there'll be more riders and a smaller spread of times at the start*. Therefore someone stamping cards on Isle of Grain control would be a great help. That would also allow me to move the control to the beach car park https://goo.gl/maps/RL4LAiacbMqzXfwd9 and force everyone out to the coast rather than just turning at the co-op.

* As we discussed, and you mentioned in your thread about start times, I'd look at still having a few waves of people starting, something like 07h40, 08h00 and 08h20 to avoid a whole peloton rolling out from Greenwich together.
I might be able to run this, calendar permitting. Definitely worth going out to the sea front.
Title: Re: ACH "The Way to the Sea" 200 from Greenwich 3/7/2021
Post by: αdαmsκι on 05 July, 2021, 11:38:52 am
I might be able to run this, calendar permitting. Definitely worth going out to the sea front.

 :thumbsup:
Title: Re: ACH "The Way to the Sea" 200 from Greenwich 3/7/2021
Post by: cygnet on 05 July, 2021, 11:03:15 pm
Possibly, and rather freakishly, the football game in the evening contributed to long queueueues at the unmanned controls, it certainly was the case at Brands Hatch. But thankfully that was just queueueues of shoppers, and not (many) cars on the way back over Blackheath.
Title: Re: ACH "The Way to the Sea" 200 from Greenwich 3/7/2021
Post by: αdαmsκι on 27 July, 2021, 06:31:16 pm
FYI the 2022 edition is now in the calendar for Saturday 2nd July. There'll be a slight route adjustment in the first leg with a control at Nurstead rather than Meopham. It means 2½ km less on the B260 after Darenth which can only be a good thing. And Isle of Grain control has been moved out to the beach.
Title: Re: ACH The Way to the Sea 200 from Greenwich 3/7/2021
Post by: Redlight on 29 July, 2021, 07:42:04 pm
In the diary - and I'll tell my neighbour to get his bike serviced beforehand  ;D