2011 Bike trip - 50cc bike trip Part 2
12 September 2011 12:05
You may remember last year I posted my article titled 50cc bike trip, whereby myself and a friend travelled to Wales and back on our 50cc motorcycles. The trip was full of thrills and (surprisingly) no spills and we vowed to do the same again on much larger bikes the following year...
12 months down the line (now both 17) and we have just returned from an almost 1000 mile, 3 day trip camping in Somerset. As you can see, we are no longer onb
ard our trusty Spanish made 50cc bikes and have both opted for larger alternatives. The Yamaha YZF-R125 ‘The Donkey’ is Luke’s bike, and the hugely impractical Yamaha FZR400 is ridden by myself.
Day 1 – Plan: leave early, ride to campsite, eat, make fire, enjoy well earned rest.
Unfortunately, not much of the above happened... Due to a minor delay (a major service on the 125) we actually set off at 2 in the afternoon and then the initial 170 mile journey down to the site took place down the perilous roads suggested by a well known search engine’s map feature.
The first stint of the journey felt epic, the bikes were going well, the weather was great and not even my overly high rear-sets or Luke’s 6000kgs of luggage were dampening either of our spirits.
However, conflicting maps had caused what appeared to be a minor issue, whereby we were on roads that according to the map were literally 2 inches apart, (surely easily overcome).
After our little mix up was sorted we ended up in Taunton around 6 o’clock.. ish, where we purchased overpriced sandwiches and crisps which we were to feast on later that evening.
After riding 50 miles the wrong way out of a supermarket sort-of set-back, we ended up at the campsite (much to the delight of the owner) at the latter side of 9 o’clock and proceeded to pitch our tent in the dark and then feast on a smorgasbord of the finest Sainsburys' could offer.
Day 2 – Plan: wake up, find breakfast, ride the best road in the world.
Fortunately, most of the above happened! We woke up, had breakfast in acafe run by an elderly gentleman who appeared to think it was 1956 and then road the Atlantic highway to Padstow where we feasted on overly hot Cornish pasties and got told off by a parking attendant.
The Atlantic highway was a surprisingly fun road, lots of traffic but some Rossi-esque overtakes overcame this issue. The FZR felt brilliant. Granted my legs needed to be surgically put right after just a few hours of riding and it felt like Rocky punched my buttocks, but through the long sweeping bends the 21-year-old bike really started to make sense.
As for Luke, the R125 looked like an R6 at a squint and when it was wound up went pretty well too. If you go by what the eBay ads suggest, the bike will do 100mph and that 14.6bhp is most certainly ‘not for the feint hearted’.
Amazingly, day two had no wrong turns and we got back to the campsite at a reasonable time, made a huge fire and ate a tin of beans! Smashing.
Day 3 – Plan: wake up, plan route over breakfast, find the new best road in the world. As with day one, not much of the above worked out. After a night of not much sleep due to some noisy bulls shouting about whatever it is bulls shout about, we woke up to a soggy tent and the sort of clouds that make you question why you’d bothered to get up in the first place.
15 minutes later, the rain came down and we ended up routing through the tourist information guide looking for some ‘cool’ stuff that was inside. Naturally, we went to a weapon collection which was selling hand guns to whom I can only assume were the majority of the UK’s murderers. We then headed back and the evening went much the same as the others.
Day 4- Journey home.
We went home. The ride back was great bar some rain showers. I rode back mainly thinking about the last few days, the trip was great, despite minor set-backs and comparatively awful weather it had met our expectations in terms of ‘fun’.
The novelty had not warn off despite this being the second trip and I hope to do the same again next year, but again on a larger scale.
The trip wasn’t quite the achievement of the first as we could go a reasonable speed and hadn’t been abroad, but again I’d managed to spend not far off 100 quid and had a very memorable few days.
I would urge anyone to go on a trip of any scale as I believe two wheels is the only way to travel.
I’m not quite sure what the purpose of this summary/journal thing was, but I do feel the image of younger riders is somewhat tainted by the media. We’re not all just a bunch of chavs that want to skid around the local supermarket car park on mopeds.
Like the rest of the biking community we simply love bikes and love riding bikes.