As daft rides go, this one was right up there with the daftest of them. Postponed from a clear, windless night some weeks ago we were now attempting a big offroad route on a windy and snowy night – basically meet at 9pm and ride all night, aiming to get home at 9am. To meet at 9pm Dave would have to ride from Preston, making my 45 minute spin to Peel Tower seem very tame indeed. Phil was also riding tonight – he lives 5 minutes from the tower. The basic route was join the MTL, ride that to Calderdale, ride a big loop over there then return via the MTL then the 3 Towers route as far west as possible in the time allowed before returning home.
After the usual pleasantries we set off towards Rawtenstall on the road, eventually joining the MTL at Lumb and started to gain some altitude. As we travelled further eastwards the snow got heavier and we all got wetter. We were also getting slower due to the poor conditions. Eventually we reached a road and decided to ride down it towards Hebden Bridge – by now the wind was gusting ferociously, the road was rapidly disappearing and we were having to bow our heads to one side to stop the broadside of sleet and snow from hitting us in the face…it was obvious we were going to have to abandon this ride; we were all soaked, we were cold and spirits were getting low.
Once back to Hebden we headed along the road back towards Rochdale, Phil headed back to Ramsbotttom and Dave and I rode to my house where we threw his bike in my car and I drove him home to Preston – by now it was after 2am.