Not to go into the finer points of route planning, but on this particular occasion, although the ride leader had created the route digitally, he had not memorised it, aside from knowing the first part of it, to Ladock, rather well, and was relying solely on the services of a certain electronic device, aka Garry the Garmin.
Consequently although the ride set off in what can only be described as a “gung ho” style, up the now familiar territory of Moresk Road, Park and Ride, Tresillian, Laddock Valley, it was whilst pausing at Laddock, that the mood took a downward dip. This was caused by a certain degree of milling around as the Garmin was fired up, and it grudgingly attempted to digest the route it had been fed the previous night, I say grudgingly, because it more or less immediately exhibited symptoms of indigestion and threw up “route calculation error” and went into a sulk.
After giving it “a good kicking” (to use a technical term) it consented to display its helpful little directional arrows on its oh so small map screen. This resulted in a sharp left past the Ladock School. It was somewhere around this point that one of the riders commented that, despite living 2 miles away for a number of years, he’d never been up that particular hill. The warm glow this generated was unfortunately swiftly dispelled when Garry Garmin seemingly arbitrarily suggested an even more acute right at the end of that road, and an acute left at the bottom of the next hill.
At the next junction in Trelion, the Garmin decided not to re-orient itself to the junction, and the ride leader’s guess at a left turn was proved false. Having re-selected the correct right turn, the ride proceeded to the next 4 way junction, where Garry, as it was now being known, again refused to be at all definite about which way to go, so again the ride leader made a guess, which was again, but only after several hundred yards, challenged by Gary, who uni-laterally called for a U turn at the next available opportunity. So a retracement was made and the correct “straight on” route was taken. This led down to Coombe and up an extraordinarily steep hill in the direction of the A390.
It was somewhere about this point that contact was made with the “easy group”, who did marvel at why even the intermediate group would have wanted to climb the hill that it just had.
After this progress was more smooth, with Garry Garmin confined to muttering imprecations in the background, across the A390 at Hewas Water, by the lumpy route, through the hedge, a move not necessarily appreciated by the accompanying tandem set… Thence to Lower Sticker and down through the village of Polgooth itself before thankfully encountering the Polgooth Inn (“16th century pub in rural valley, according to the ever helpful “Google Maps”).
It was at this point that the sneaky navigational tricks played by Garry Garmin were brought to the fore. To whit the planned route, with its extra loops, had been in the region of 19.5 miles. However the group had arrived only covering 17.2 miles. Obviously Garry, whilst appearing to be dumbstruck by the junctions, had been secretly re-navigating a shorter route, presumably thinking that on balance, that those extra loops were taking us the long way round and the humans presumably didn’t really want to go that way anyway…
Distance 17.2m avg 11.2mph (HR bpm avg 108 max 140)
Having arrived at the inn, due to the extra guest riders, our allotted table space was exceeded, so it was decided, reasonably, given the unseasonable warmth of the day, that we should sit in the garden. Although there was a huge multi faceted table that amazingly just accommodated the whole group, in fact the sun was no longer shining and a cool breeze was blowing, so some members of the group were somewhat chilled.
The food was of course delightful and substantial, with the usual complement of large sandwiches, humongously accoutremented baked potatoes, extremely solid, but not baked chocolate cheese cake, mussels with garlic and so on. Oh and of course not forgetting the obligatory cheesy chips, which were of an extremely good standard, and thoroughly complemented the cheese cake and flat white…
The route back was helpfully navigated by the human hand of the “easy” ride’s leader. Consequentially the intermediate ride leader, played “follow the leader” and had even less idea where he was going than usual. However the route was approximately thus:- through Lower Sticker, Tregony, right up towards Golden Mill, through the Trewithen Estate, down through Probus, before coming to an “official” halt in Tresillian.
Distance 15.1m avg 11.5mph (HR bpm avg 108 max 139)
On a historical note I found this report of what I take to be the previous ride to Polgooth (and in fact the only time I think I’ve previously been there)
Club Ride – Polgooth – 30th Dec 2012
Given the bedraggled state of the weather it seems bizarre that anybody would care to venture forth this year. Anyway, four hardy souls left Truro for the final TCC run of the year – and, of course, it was raining! Bob Jewell left us at Tresillian (not too well – hope you’re better now Bob!) thus leaving Jude, Niq and the Tour Director to take a pleasant enough route via Ladock, St Stephen and Sticker to Polgooth. We almost made Polgooth before the heavens opened (again) and we took refuge in the ‘Christmas Decorated Bus Shelter’ at Sticker. Niq noticed that the shelter appeared to be bolted down, either presumably to be better prepared for whatever the elements threw at it or to avoid theft – the mind boggles…………
We were joined at the Polgooth Inn by the car contingent (Jennie, Christine & Mike) for lunch and although the attraction of motorised transport home has never seemed more relevant the official Club Run departed in due course to tackle the 17% hill out of Polgooth up to Commerce Common (it was very wise to avoid the roast lunch!) At least the rain held off as we battled back into the South-westerly gale to Tregony and onward via Trewithen to Probus. Surface water everywhere – what’s’ new!
Anyway, hats off to Niq who would certainly have covered over 50 miles before getting home to Mount Hawke. He exceeded expectations on the day – perhaps we all did…..
Riders – Bob Jewell (retired at Tresillian), Jude Lawrence Niq Carter-Rowe and JK (director la Tour).
Weather – Pretty awful, frankly
Miles – 36