North Wales 25/03/18

Sunday the 25th of March, and a few of “our little group” had arranged to meet up for a day’s greenlaning in North Wales…
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Starting at the Ponderosa Cafe at the top of the Horseshoe Pass just north of Llangollen (bottom right on the map above) and ‘laning west and then north to end the day at Henryd!…
Alan had plotted the route on paper maps and I had transcribed it onto MemoryMap to email the route out to the others…
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We arrived at 8:40am to find everyone else already there! They were keen! ๐Ÿ˜‰
From left to right then… Alan and I leading in the S200KYS Jimny, Brett in the Jalapeno Green Jimny (bringing up the rear for once), Kev and his dog “Freyja” in the dark blue Jimny, Riccy in the dark silver J999MNY, and Steve in the big red Jimny.
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Time for a nice good value breakfast in the Ponderosa then! ๐Ÿ˜‰

Brett’s Introductory Video of us leaving the Caf’

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Along the C-roads to the first ‘lane of the day…
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…not this one close-by though, as it’s still closed for repairs, as an email to the main man at Rights of Way had recently confirmed.
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So, on we went on the yellow C-road south on the map* above, to our position at the crosshair where we were to drive the inverted W of ‘lanes…

*Maps… there-in lies a recent discussion on one of the 4×4 related group pages on Facebook, someone questioned, and a debate started, on whether we should be showing maps of where we were when greenlaning. We’ve discussed this ourselves too, and we believe it is in the interest of our hobby to show these maps of where we were, we have always hoped that people (you lot!) ๐Ÿ˜‰ enjoy reading our blogs, and hope that it shows that we do it in a very responsible manner, and that others will be inspired to do the same. Greenlaning has long been seen as a behind-closed-doors secret society where we couldn’t possibly tell you where these ‘lanes are. So others have to go out and look for them, and may end up driving ‘lanes that are not legal rights of way, impassable, sensitive or subject to restraining orders, etc… So we believe it is in the interest of our hobby to promote and educate based on how we do our hobby. And as is often said “use them or lose them”, our blogs are also catalogues of usage of greenlanes over the years…

Anyway, on with the blog ๐Ÿ˜‰
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Looking back on one of the hairpins at the others behind… Kev must be rounding the bend, as that’s Riccy, Steve and Brett at the back.
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There’s Kev behind us… His Jimny ‘only’ has a 2″ lift and tyres, no traction enhancing devices and no winch, so we positioned him behind us as S200KYS has a rear winch as well as a front one, so we could help if out if needed… ๐Ÿ˜‰
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Another hairpin and there he is again, with his faithful dog “Freyja” in the back…
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And Steve behind.

Brett’s Video of the first bit of these ‘lanes
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And up the second half as you can see in –

Brett’s Video of the second half of these ‘lanes…
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A new one for us, Alan spotted this one in a Total Offroad magazine, in one of their ‘Roadbooks’.DSCN7460.jpg
Tarmac turns to three-ply…
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And we’re through the gate and…
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… up a mostly flat ‘lane, BUT, it was on the way, and as said earlier, use them or lose them! ๐Ÿ˜‰

Brett’s Video of this, the second ‘lane of the day.
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The third ‘lane, down from Gwyddelwern, north of Corwen.
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I see Brett’s booked the weather again ๐Ÿ˜‰
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A bit scratchy, as you can see in…

Brett’s Video of this, the third ‘lane of the day.
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If we go back to the map above, it appeared that the ‘lane would finish when we got off the UCR (Unclassified County Road, a “white”) with ORPA (Other Route with Public Access) dots on it… But, Alan had been looking at “Streetview” again, and the yellow C-road on the other side of the crossroad looked very green and narrow? So it was worth a look…
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Hmmm, tarmac gives way to a three-ply again…
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Blimey! No-way this should be a yellow C-road on the map! Don’t follow SatNav down here! LOL
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Here we are on the map again.
DSCN7469.jpgFlooded corner

Brett’s Video of this smashing yellow C-road!
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Next, another UCR with ORPA dots…
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Pretty flat, but again, on the way!

Brett’s Video of it.
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Lovely series of weirs along the way.
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And then, a bit of an eyesore, but probably the future?, a field of solar panels!
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A quick trip west on the tarmac and we’re heading north to Bettws Gwerfil Goch, another UCR with ORPA dots…
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Passed the meditation centre… “HUMmmm”! ๐Ÿ˜‰

Brett’s Video – at 1:14 you can see we pass the right fork we should have taken, and we end up…
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Slightly west of where we should have been, by the river, and looking into…
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… a field!
We debate what to do, and decide there’s nowhere to turn round, and if we did it would be hard to swing onto the fork we missed, so we all reversed all the way back to…
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… the right fork we missed…
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On we go…
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A bit tight along here, bigger 4x4s watch out!
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And up to the village.

Brett’s Video, starting again at the right fork we missed earlier.
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Next! I forgot to take a photo of the iPad screen, so here’s a map extract.
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Again, leaving the road…
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Oooh! Remnants of snow.
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Kev behind coming through a stream.
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A narrow gateway onto more open land…
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The others behind in the sun ๐Ÿ™‚
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Yet there’s still snow on the ground?
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Alan opening yet another gate!

Brett’s Video up to said gate…
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Standing water, and a new shiny wind generator in the distance…
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Looking back again (arm-out-of-the-window photography!)
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More snow…

Brett’s Video up to the point where we emerge onto…
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where the ‘lane has been widened and graded for access to that new shiny wind generator behind us… I hope the whole rest of the ‘lane isn’t like this? ๐Ÿ˜ฆ

Brett’s Video along the graded bit…
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Flat and wide to allow the sections of the generator to be brought in by lorries.
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Aha! The new access road sweeps left, as we go right to rejoin the ‘lane… ๐Ÿ™‚
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Up to “Ty Mawr” (Literally translated as Big House) in the distance…
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Brett’s Video of the rest of the ‘lane.
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ORPA dots running west below Llanfihangel Glyn Myfyr (easy for you to say!)
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Joining the ‘lane…
The second lot of gates are twined together, Alan manages to pick most of them, but we carry cutters and spare twine to gain access and make good as we go…
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Another gate, but with a big drop just before it, as you can see in…

Brett’s Video of the rest of the ‘lane, with Alan directing us safely off the ‘lane.
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A few road miles, and we’re at the next ‘lane over to Ysbyty Ifan.
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Hmmm, as you can hear on the video further down, all the gates are open? So we decide to leave them as we found them…
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Fantastic views await us…
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And lungs full of fresh air too ๐Ÿ™‚

Brett’s Video up to before the gate ahead of us.
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Dropping down and a gang of Flossies are having a sunbathe on and around the ‘lane…
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They stubbornly move and as sheeps do, they run along in front of you?! Daft! They eventually decide to run off to the right though, up the bank to safety, but not before running straight down the ‘lane for a hundred yards ๐Ÿ˜‰

Brett’s Video of the middle bit of the ‘lane…

And again, Brett’s Video to the end of the ‘lane through the two little ford before the farmyard…
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Approaching Ysbyty Ifan and a voice from the back asks us to pull over for a bit?! Huh? Brett-who-rarely-stops wants to refill his coffee thermos mug ๐Ÿ˜‰ LOL
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Lined up for a quick break then…
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The pink ORPA dots heading west away from Ysbyty Ifan, leaving the tarmac again…
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And a nice stoney climb up to…

Brett’s Video up to the rock step
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Here in front of us…
A couple of attempts to get the right line, and we’re up and over, and pull over…
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… incase Kev behind us needs a hand. Hmmm, there’s plenty of hands pointing for him there though! ๐Ÿ˜‰
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Yup, quite a step! Shown using Kev for reference ๐Ÿ˜‰

Brett’s Video of Kev having a damn good go at it… But it’s best to…
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…have a tug up rather than break something…
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I can see him coming up in my door mirrors as I operate the winch with the dashboard switches as the others shout instructions…
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Behind Kev, Riccy makes it look easy with his twin ARB airlockers!

Brett’s Video of Riccy coming up… blink and you’ll miss it! ๐Ÿ˜‰
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Steve next…

Brett’s Video of Steve coming up…

Brett up easily, so he decides to remove the rocks and have another go! ๐Ÿ˜‰

Brett without rocks! LOL
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All safely up…
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Brett shutting the gate behind us
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And onto the next bit of the ‘lane towards Ysbyty Ifan
DSCN7527.jpgMy favourite sign!
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Here we are
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Lined up at the little bridge and gate ๐Ÿ™‚

Brett’s Video of us up to this point.
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Another narrow “Suzuki Gate” ๐Ÿ˜‰
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And over the top, more stunning views…
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Dropping down towards the end of the ‘lane…

Brett’s Video of the rest of the ‘lane
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A few more road miles and we’re lined up for Dolwyddelan down to the outskirts of Betws-y-Coed…
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Off the road again…
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Pulled over for a group of ten ‘crossers to pass…
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Onto the ‘lane proper…
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Brett’s Video up towards the gate in the middle…
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Another narrow gate that keeps swinging closed…
“Alan, deploy the new gadget!” ๐Ÿ˜‰
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I’ve been making a few bits in the garage recently, and knocked up this gate prop!
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Complete with comedy pointy-finger hand and thumb, which can be used to hold various gates open by having it either way up…
Brett retrieves the gate prop when we’re all through, without someone having to hold the gate… I made it as we sometimes ‘lane “just the two of us” which is awkward as I have to hold a gate for Brett, he has to then get out and hold the gate for me, etc…
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Nuclear devastation? Or de-forestation? ๐Ÿ˜‰

Brett’s Video of the middle of the ‘lane, and…

… more
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… to the gates at the top of the drop down to (the outskirts of) Betws-y-Coed…
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Brett’s Video to the bottom, much better coming up, but today we’re doing it downwards…
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Next ‘lane, round towards Capel Curig on the road and then over the top again and down back to Dolwyddelan…

Brett’s Video of him following Steve up…
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… to the rock steps above.

Brett’s Video to the gate top / middle

Brett’s Video to the gate off the moors

Brett’s Video to where we stop for the lone lady walking up the ‘lane from Dolwyddelan.

Brett’s Video to the end…
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Next! The ‘lane up from Llanrwst Cemetery…
DSCN7551.jpgOooh! That’s a bit low, and indeed the waffle boards on my roof protector bars take a hit.

Brett’s Video up and passing the two groups of four walkers.
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Next, down south-west to Llanrwst…

Brett’s Video of it… odd how it pops out at the end of a residential street?!
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Uh-Oh! We’re getting nearer… We have a love/hate relationship with “Henryd”, lots of panel damage and snapped driveshafts over the years, but we keep going back now and again to re-conquer it ๐Ÿ˜‰
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Onto the beginning of “Henryd”.

Brett’s Video of us through the gate
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Ok, up we go then…
DSCN7557.jpg“Henryd”

Brett’s Video up to the first corner, where we get out to let the others have a look at what we’re up against…
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Kev’s dog “Freyja” having a look round… But our eyes are on the rocks that shunt you left into a big rock that stops your front left wheel…
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Ah well…
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I’ve got my line in my head and return to S200KYS…

Brett’s Video ofย  me going up… first time! Probably easier going first before everyone else has polished the rocks, and lucky I got the right line…

Brett’s Video of Kev’s first attempt…

And his second attempt, ending up in a good place and line up ready for…
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My rear winch to haul him up…

Brett’s Video of me winching him up… it’s loose, rocky and steep, and Kev’s Jimny has a 2″ lift and no traction aids (ARB / Lockright / LSD), so he did well all day following us around… I’ve often said we’ve over-specified our Jimnys, I think Gary was right when he said we just need some good tyres, a 2″ Lift, a rear Lockright, and a winch to get us out of any trouble we get into…

Brett’s Video of Kev coming up behind me after winching, I must admit I didn’t think he’d get going again up there, but he did!

Brett’s Video of Riccy’s first attempt, as he says on the VT “A bit slow for my liking” ๐Ÿ˜‰

Brett’s Video – Ricky straight up on the second attempt, a bit more power! ๐Ÿ™‚
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Steve next!

Brett’s Video of Steve’s first attempt, as I said at the start of this section, the rocks throw you left into the big rock that stops your progress…
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Backing down Steve gets into an iffy position by the edge of the ‘lane, so we guide him up and down at various steering locks until he is safely back in the middle of the ‘lane, and ready for…

Brett’s Video of Steve’s second attempt…
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If in doubt! Steve winching up…

Brett’s Video of his attempts – you can see at 2:00 that the front of his Jimny gets thrown left into that big rock.and then I here his winch power out and come to assist…Notice theย  “I’m not coming down” comment at 4:50 ๐Ÿ˜‰
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Here’s a photo I took of that rock that stops your progress…
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Brett winching up the first corner…
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Hmmm, second corner, I hate this one more that I hate the first one…
And Brett hates coming down it more than I hate going up it! ๐Ÿ˜‰

Brett’s video of the second corner… power on and keep steering! Urggh! I hate it!…

Brett’s video to top of ravine section… I was waiting at the top expecting to have to assist Kev, but his Jimny appeared under it’s own steam! Amazing! A credit to his driving skill no-less!

Brett to the top and chatting at the top by the little church…
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A photo I got of the group…
We were turned round and about to head down… But, time was ticking away, it was nearly five, so we decided for once, to head…

Out passed the little church for once…

Here’s Kev’s video of his ascent of “Henryd”, you can hear at about 4:00 that he mentions about whether he can get moving again, and at about 9:00 you can see us waiting for him, but we weren’t needed! ๐Ÿ˜‰ Nice one Kev! ๐Ÿ™‚
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Another little UCR with ORPA dots on the way back to civilisation… ๐Ÿ˜‰
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Nice leafy ‘lane towards the end of the day, a vast difference to “Henryd” ๐Ÿ˜‰

Brett’s Video of this the penultimate ‘lane…
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Hendre next then, an old favourite…
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A scratchy tight ‘lane behind a property that encroaches onto the ‘lane…

Brett’s Video of this lovely ‘lane…
And that was it, I pulled up to unlock my free wheeling hubs ready for the journey home, and the others began doing the same, and then airing up their tyres for the long journeys home, which eventually brought the homeowner out, and I assumed he was going to “kick off” about the noise and why had we stopped there, but instead he stayed for a good jangle, and in the end we had to make our apologies and slip away, as he wanted to keep talking 4x4s, and we needed to be heading home, especially as some of the lads lived miles and hours away..

Brett’s Closing Remarks, indeed another fantastic day…
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NOOOooo! Riccy had a lift home! ๐Ÿ˜ฆ An RAC flatbed (saves on fuel though!) had to take him home as a rear bearing failed…

APART from that, another great day, THANKS to all! Alan for plotting and navigating and opening all the gates, Brett for videoing and closing the gates, and Kev (and “Freyja” of course) and Riccy and Steve for making it another excellent day’s greenlaning in North Wales! ๐Ÿ™‚


 

South Shropshire “Milestones”

Sunday the 25th of February, and a few of “our little group” had arranged to meet up for a days greenlaning in South Shropshire and a bit of Staffordshire –
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Brett had emailed out the route so we could all load it on our tablets, we were to meet near Bridgnorth and eventually finish the day at Ellesmere…
So Alan and I left at 5:45am to meet Brett on the way. We ended up ahead of him for once, so we pulled into a layby on the A483 near Rossett to wait for him, and then fell in behind him for the journey down, when he roared passed us… As you can here on –

Brett’s Introductory Video Part 1 ๐Ÿ™‚
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We’d arranged to meet in the car park of the Acton Arms in Morville. When we arrived, Phil S was there already, waiting for us in his new build! A reincarnation of his previous Jimny, now very neatly converted into a pickup bed, complete with twin winches, very smart!
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While we were chatting, Steve arrived, making four Jimnys for the day, we were to be a five, but Gary F had to pull out as he was still repairing his Jimny after a day at a pay’n’play site, as you’ll hear in…

Brett’s Introductory Video Part 2 ๐Ÿ˜‰
Right then, not even time to eat my bacon and egg sandwich, and we’re already off, to…
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… the first ‘lane of the day, a short tarmac trip away… “Lower Faintree” on the map above, a BOAT heading south…
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The sun has only just come up, we met at 8am to get a head start on the daylight this time of year…

Here’s Brett’s Video of the first ‘lane of the day.
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A little further on after this first ‘lane, Alan pointed out the Ordnance Survey marker on the map (above), the little blue triangle between the numbers 196 and the words “The Baytree”, so I stopped for a quick look –
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A bit overgrown, but it’s between the hedge and the two pallets forming a temporary gate, in the above photo. Follow the link above for more information on these ๐Ÿ˜‰
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On we go, second ‘lane of the day… “Duddlewick to Pickthorn Farm”
DSCN7268.jpgNice photo of the others in front of us as we round the edge of a field…
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A Jimny gate!

As can be seen in Brett’s Video of this ‘lane…
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Along the way there’s a ford on a C road close by, so it would be rude not to take it in? ๐Ÿ˜‰
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Shallow, but worth the detour, especially as it cut the corner off (map above).
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Next ‘lane then?! Hampton Loade…

Bit flat as you can see in Brett’s video, but always worth driving them… “Use them or lose them” ! ๐Ÿ˜‰
Next ‘lane then…
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Interesting start, under some water pipes…
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Dropping down…
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And entering a stream?…
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Cool! ๐Ÿ™‚
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Ahead the others have stopped and we catch them up…
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Out for a look… having added some recycled water to the stream ๐Ÿ˜‰
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Ahhh… Phil out for a shakedown in his new build, discovers those pesky vacuum hubs aren’t engaging properly when you need them to (learnt that the hard way too!)
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So he winches up the bank off the back of Brett’s Jalapeno Jimny…
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Back to the Jimnys then…!

Brett’s video up to the point of stopping for Phil when he couldn’t see him in his rear view mirror…
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Steve in the big red Jimny…
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Up he comes…
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Me next – thanks to Alan for taking the photo!
DSCN7294.jpgNice signage by Shropshire’s Rights of Way team ๐Ÿ™‚
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Next ‘lane then, and you can see our crosshair on the map below Turleygreen.
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Flat and obviously heavily graded fairly recently…

A good drive though, as you can see in Brett’s Video above.
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Next, Coton Farm to Quatt Farm, another BOAT

Here in Brett’s Video.
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After this ‘lane Phil decided that was enough, he’d given his smashing new vehicle a bit of a shakedown, discovered the vacuum free wheel hubs weren’t operating correctly, and didn’t want to hold us up by not having four wheel drive properly…
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… and bid us thanks and farewell, and said he’ll see us for another trip real soon…
Good! Be nice to see you and your lovely little pickup soon mate ๐Ÿ˜‰
“And then, there were three”…
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Onto the next ‘lane then, a BOAT with a little –
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Ford in the middle, as you can see betterer once again on…

Brett’s Video ๐Ÿ™‚
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Ah, as we discuss over the CBs whilst on the ‘lane, the Ford on the map actually refers to a ford on the tarmac road –
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The depth gaugeย  indicates it may get quite deep, but not today, it’s just a “tyre wetter”…
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Next, another BOAT the one in the middle heading north.

Here, in Brett’s Video, and then we drive the one adjacent to it heading west on the map…

Brett’s Video of it.
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Next! Another BOAT heading north Upper Farmcote to Woundale.

Here’s Brett’s Video of it.
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Next… a series of ‘lanes around Claverley, the first starting below Chyknell, a BOAT –

Brett’s up where it crosses the white road…
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Quite deep ruts.
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Sneaking past the back of building as seen in –

Brett’s next video

Brett’s third video of us looping back under the word Claverly on the map above, and below for that matter –
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Where you find us heading up another BOAT to the east of Sandford.

Brett’s Video of it…
DSCN7321.jpgNext, yet another BOAT heading north to Draycott –

As seen in Brett’s Video above ๐Ÿ™‚
The next ‘lane looked an awkward one, the map is below, we’d seen it on trailwise the national database of rights of way, and videos of the TRF using it, but the start appeared to be a bridleway, so we couldn’t see any way onto it, so we started at the other end…
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Here, from the B-road up to the gap between Castle and Hill…?
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Up through the scratchy bushes…
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And avenue of trees…
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Where you can see we stop at the top and find there is no way down except the aforementioned bridleway…

Here’s Brett’s Video up to the top…
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Here’s our crosshair just above the second-o in Common., so we turn around and head back north east…
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Back down the ‘lane… we were at the back and last to turn round, so we had some catching up to do…
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Steve in the distance…
Then there was a bit of tarmac to next lane-
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Buildwas Lane, I didn’t take any photos as we did this ‘lane on our last trip, but here’s…

Brett’s Video of Buildwas Lane.
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Next, from Overley up to Wrockwardine…

Brett’s Video of it.
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And then around Sheriffhale (Manor)

Again, in Brett’s Video…
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And then off to find this one at Whiston, on the map as a BOAT yup?

Brett’s Video though shows us finding a locked gate, and a footpath sign though? –
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A Padlocked gate…
DSCN7337.jpgAnd a footpath sign pointing up the field, where the vehicular ruts are… Definitely the right of way we were looking for though, so time to take advice off the local council’s Rights of Way, and report back to Glass and Trailwise.
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Here weย  at the other end of it…
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And more locked gates…
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Ah well, onto the next one took which took some finding! Again a BOAT…
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Nothing much is getting down that Byway Open to All Traffic!!
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Next ‘lane then, above Upper Cowley…
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We find the ‘lane half obscured by a white van, and lots of other vehicles around? As you can see in…

Brett’s Video of us meeting the treasure hunters!
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Without a word of a lie, there must have been about FIFTY people decked out mostly in drabs and holding their metal detectors! The farmer had just recently ploughed the fields and they’d organised some mass scan so see if anything was unearthed?…
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We stopped to walk over to where the canal goes through a tunnel just to the right of the ‘lane…

Brett’s Video of the rest of the ‘lane to –
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A bridge over the canal with nice properties backing on to the waterfront…

Brett’s Video of a little lane we missed earlier on the loop / diversion…
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And then we found a millennium stone with a plaque that read –
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Interesting!
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Next ‘lane leads to Sutton then…
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Plenty of warning signage “Don’t follow Sat Nav”, hence the comment on Brett’s Video below…
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And a hand painted version of the signs I always “collect” ๐Ÿ˜‰

Hmmm, Brett’s short video stops abruptly?

Ah, problems with his camera? ๐Ÿ˜‰
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Through a big sandstone cutting along way…
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A loop of UCRs with ORPA dots east of Croxton next then…?

But as you can see on Brett’s Video –
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It’s too narrow even for us to push through down there?!
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Quick drive around “The Bogs”??!
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Or…

As Brett calls it more politely on his video “The Wellings” ๐Ÿ˜‰
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Another little ‘lane along the way…

Brett’s Video of it….
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Another loop at Mucklestone (great name!)

Brett’s Video of it…
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Another ByWay…
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Nice! As you can see in…

Brett’s Video of it.
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Lane below Dobson’s Bridge next then, heading west from the crosshair on the map above…

Brett’s Video
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And then south on the next one…

Brett’s Video
DSCN7374.jpgThen this ‘lane south from Bilmarsh, contrary to the map we drove this one heading south after coming in from the C-road top right of the ‘lane….

Brett’s Video of the first part of it, up to…
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The point where a fallen tree blocks our way…
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Soon chopped up with the cordless chainsaw though ๐Ÿ˜‰

On we go…
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As in the video below we carried on through a rocky ravine…
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Cutting more fallen trees as we went…

Brett’s video of the last bit of this great ‘lane…
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Next ‘lane heading west from B-U-R-L-T-O-N (video reference ๐Ÿ˜‰ )
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You sure we can get through here Brett?

Brett’s Video of it…
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Back around “Cockshutt” (Titter!)

Brett’s Video of the first bit going anti-cockwise (LOL)
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There was indeed some deep standing water on the ‘lane!
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Then we reached the crosshair on the above map to travel west back to the A road…

But as you can see in Brett’s Video we were met with…
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A gate with a combination lock? Part of an angling club’s patch it would seem?
Ah well, off we go… one more ‘lane to go…
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Hmmm, straight off a busy road, and…
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… rather overgrown?! Brett and Alan go for a walk down it while I take a photo and devour a bag of Prawn Crackers ๐Ÿ˜‰
They return saying it’s not worth it as the last ‘lane of the day with the light due to fade soon… Time to head home…

Brett’s traditioal closing remarks ๐Ÿ˜‰
Indeed, a great day out as always, some fairly flat ‘lanes today, but that’s life, “use them or lose them”! ๐Ÿ˜‰
Thanks to Brett for planning, plotting, checking and liasing… and for leading and videoing! Thanks to Phil for making a short-live comeback, but with the Scorpion having had a shakedown he knows what needs sorting ready for next time ๐Ÿ˜‰ And to Steve for coming up all the way from darn sarf to spend another days ‘laning with us!
And finally, thanks to Alan for also making a comeback after a recent ailment that kept him from “his seat” in my Jimny ๐Ÿ˜‰ He’s now back to his usual self and shutting the odd gate we encountered and following the route with his maps and Potti, and still sneaking a glance at the iPad now and again to check where we were ๐Ÿ˜‰ And, back to the sub-title of the day… “Milestones”, as well as seeing the Ordnance Survey marker stone, the Millennium stone, we also reached a couple more milestones – this was Alan’s fortieth trip with us, and during the day he added the 500th (unique) ‘lane to his catalogue so far!
Another great day! Thanks to ALL! ๐Ÿ˜‰


 

Shropshire 28/01/18

Sunday the 28th of January, and a few of us had arranged to meet up for a days greenlaning in Shropshire –
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Brett had plotted the route (as per usual!) and we’d arranged to meet up at the McDonalds in Shrewsbury, for breakfast at 8am –
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Ummm, as it happened, in the end, there was just me & Brett in attendance ๐Ÿ˜ฆ
Brett had no-one with him for the day, and I was missing my co-pilot Alan as he’d been rather ill of late, and wasn’t up to the day. Riccy and Joel were scheduled to come down from Cumbria and had booked a Travelodge locally, but they were beset with mechanical problems at the eleventh hour… So just two Jimnys and two Drivers, “Billy-no-mates” ๐Ÿ˜‰
As you can hear on…

…Brett’s now customary introductory video ๐Ÿ™‚
And then, just a quick trip south from Shrewsbury to the start of the day’s route at Leasowes Bank Farm just south-west of Pulverbatch –
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Here on my iPad MemoryMap GPS screen.
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Here’s the start of it…

And here’s the rest in Brett’s Video… You can hear us arrange to do relay-gates, he opens one for me to drive through, then I open the next one, etc…

On we go to the end of the second lane…
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A short drop south to the next ‘lane “Gatten”
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Through the farmyard (Slowly!) then we’re faced with this great climb up…
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A standing start with the gate shut behind me, so airlocker on, and up we crawl…
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Awesome!…
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And then catching up with Brett (above the first fence post!) ๐Ÿ˜‰

Brett’s Video of this great ‘lane… ๐Ÿ™‚
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A quick trip north-east and then we’re heading south-east on the map above from our crosshair position…
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Just one nice photo of Brett’s Jimny infront of a small lake here, and the rest is…

… on his video above.
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Next, north by my finger.
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Small ford…
DSCN7104.jpgThen a nice climb up…
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To the horizon…

… as on Brett’s Video of the first half of this ‘lane.

And the second half, where you can see me…
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… pulled over after opening the gate for Brett.
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Next heading south New House to Adstone Hill
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Spectacular view to our right, although the camera doesn’t do it justice…

You can see in the middle of the ‘lane we meet a small fallen tree… We could have driven around the left of it, but chose to tidy it up, for ourselves, and other route users ๐Ÿ˜‰
DSCN7110.jpgBefore…
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After… Buzz (the cordless chainsaw) and I had trimmed it, and Brett had stacked the offcuts on the other side of the ‘lane…
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And on we trundle…

… to the double gates at the end.
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Next, Adstone to Medlicott
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Down from the farm at the top…
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Through a small ford…
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And then up a scratchy ‘lane…

Brett’s Video of it…
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The north-west and onto the ‘lane from Coates heading east…
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Nice view to my right (behind the big pile of manure!) LOL

Brett’s Video, up to…
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…another Long Mynd sign.
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Lost Brett after pausing to shut the gate.

Onwards and eventually back to the tarmac…
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Quick trip on the tarmac south-west and then onto “Stanbach”
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Down off the moors…
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Pausing to capture Brett in the distance…

Brett’s Video of this nice little ‘lane
(Excuse the ‘lame pun on the video!)
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Next ‘lane, under the ridge where the paragliders fly above, mad-men, like my brother!
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The start…

Brett’s Video of the ‘lane ๐Ÿ™‚
On we go…

Until…
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Another tree down, you can see the nice new break on the trunk.
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Out comes Buzz again, and we tidy everything once again…
Some crossers go round as we’re doing it, and some ramblers THANK US (!) for clearing the way ๐Ÿ™‚ ๐Ÿ™‚

Rest of the ‘lane…
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A bit of tarmac later, and we’re just leaving Clunton heading west and I noticed a BOAT (ByWay Open to All Traffic) in Sowdley Wood below us on the B4368, so we turned round and went for a look…
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Looked promising!
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Brett’s Video of the first half…
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A nice little ‘lane / find… nothing that taxing, but on our route and better driving that than tarmac ๐Ÿ˜‰

Clunton Ford… just a foot deep, surprising given the rain we’d had recently…
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West through Clun. and then onto –
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Whitcott Keysett BOAT east towards Bicton
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BYWAY sign… nice signage here in Shropshire.
DSCN7139.jpgOooh, this looks nice!
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What a daft place to put (another!) gate though?!
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Another gate in the middle, where…

Brett’s video ends…
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Through the gate and there’s a big hump, where Brett shouts over the CB (in his next video below) that S200KYS is flexing well, so I climbed back out for the above photo ๐Ÿ˜‰

On we go…
Cracking ‘lane that!

Through Bicton Ford at the end of the ‘lane…

Then Brett…
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Nice bow wave ๐Ÿ™‚
Next ‘lane…
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Acton to Brockton… is a bugger to find, as you can see on…

Brett’s Video, and through another ford at the end…
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Next!
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“Lower Down” BOAT heading north
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Another couple of fords along this one…

Here’s Brett’s Video of the full ‘lane.
Next! Another great ford! –
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Again…

Here’s the whole ‘lane on Brett’s Video ๐Ÿ™‚
Next? Yup, another great ford…
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At Cheney Longville…
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PUBLIC RIGHT OF WAY ๐Ÿ™‚
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Old railway bridge embankments
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Leaning over
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Squeeze!
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And through the ford proper, with a steep climb up the other bank…

As you can see on Brett’s Video ๐Ÿ˜‰
Next… a personal favourite!
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Up from Church Stretton…
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My favourite blue sign ๐Ÿ˜‰
Fist bit…
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… is a nice little ‘lane
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… that pops out into a residential estate?!

Brett’s Video of it… and then we struggle to find the second bit, and he kindly waits for me… ๐Ÿ˜‰
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Here it is… over the kerb?!…

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And onto an old favourite…
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Funny place to leave a strop? LOL

Anyway, the video gives you a better idea of this awesome ‘lane!
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And then up the rest… inquisitive sheeps come for a look…

Brett’s Video of the middle bit, up to another gate, where we relay again.

And the last bit of it…
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Pulled over for a group on a charity bike ride…

And then through a really deep ford at the end of the road… LOL
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Next… a BOAT around Soudley

Odd having a ‘lane running right passed the back of your house? Four in all, as on the map above…
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Next, a BOAT running west below Middlehope / towards Harton Wood.
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BYWAY!

Brett’s Video of it…
…Where, Ummm, you can hear him mention I’d just rear-ended him ๐Ÿ˜ฆ I slammed on, but yes, rammed him up the rear… sounds like I might owe him a new Hi-Lift jack ๐Ÿ˜ฆ Whoops!
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Larkfield Farm to Milford Lodge north-west of Diddlebury…

Brett’s Video of it… (I must have got tired of taking photos?)
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Little ford along the way…
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Clee St. Margaret Ford…
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More like a flooded road?
And then onto Peckledy…
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Again, one of my favourites…
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Down we go…
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Ummm, down all the ruts and steps?!… Errr…
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Drop into the splash pool?!… Ummm…
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Along the rocky river bed with it’s foot high step?!…
NOPE… Graded! Ruined ๐Ÿ˜ฆ

Brett’s Video of it… ๐Ÿ˜ฆ
DSCN7202.jpgI still stuck a fiver in the collection jar on the gatepost though, it’ll make up for all the times I won’t come back now it’s been ruined… ๐Ÿ˜ฆ
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Ah well, onto the next one… BOAT north-east out of Beambridge… The sun was shining ๐Ÿ™‚
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Brett swings in…
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Another nice ford in the middle…

Brett’s Video of it…
At one with nature? He mentions Blue Tits and Snow Drops in this video…
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Bush Farm BOAT below Shipton

Brett’s Video of it.
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Next, a ‘lane above Bourton

Brett’s Video of the first half of it…

And the second half… (After a Pits Stop)
You can hear Brett mention a nice Pheasant carving made out of a tree –
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So I zoomed in at it over the gate…
The we’re onto the second ‘lane on the map above, past the mast…
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There’s that blue sign again ๐Ÿ˜‰
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“Past the Mast”

A reference to Brett’s comment on his video above ๐Ÿ˜‰
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Last ‘lane of the day then… Up north from Buildwas…

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At the top…
Free wheel hubs off, and ready for home…

Brett’s Closing Comments, says it all ๐Ÿ˜‰
Hopefully we’ll be joined by some of our mates next time, and we won’t have to go as Billy and Billy (no-mates!) ๐Ÿ˜‰


 

Christmas run in the Ceiriog Valley 27/12/17

Wednesday (?!) the 27th of December 2017, and a few of us from “our little group” had arranged to meet up for the traditional Christmas Run in and around the Ceiriog Valley just south of Llangollen –
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That’s Llangollen in the top middle of the above map, and the blob in the bottom right corner is Oswestry, to give you an idea where we were…
So how come we’re all out on a Wednesday? ๐Ÿ˜‰ We normally ‘lane on a Sunday, but the lads had said we’d go out on the Wednesday after Boxing Day this year, I said it wasn’t a public holiday and my shop would be open, but they pointed out that Wednesday is my day off! My missus agreed, and so I set the shop up (Newspapers, bread, milk, etc) and then escaped at 8am to go and meet the others –
DSCN6961.jpgLined up, as is the norm, left to right – Colin and Gary in the Red Rooster, Riccy and Joel in the J999MNY Jimny, Brett (on his own, no TLB Becky or Dave the Handyman this time) in the Jalapeno Jimny – leading as usual, and Alan and I in the blue S200KYS Jimny. So where are we?
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Halton McDonalds for breakfast! ๐Ÿ˜‰
A good meet and greet, as we haven’t seen Colin and Gary since the July trip(s) to the Lake District, and Riccy and Joel have joined us once again… from Bowness-on-Solway! They stayed over the night before in a B&B.
And that leads us nicely onto…

Brett’s Introductory Video ๐Ÿ˜‰
And the onto the first ‘lane of the day…

Interesting to see that when they are building the new houses at the beginning of the ‘lane that they have already fitted dropped kerbs where the new road crosses the byway ๐Ÿ™‚
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This was the little loop we took to take in this first ‘lane.
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Second ‘lane is Bronygarth just up the road –

But as Brett said at the end of his video…
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… that fallen tree is a bit big for my 36V Cordless Chainsaw! LOL ๐Ÿ˜‰

Next ‘lane then! “Starlings Castle”, and then down through the woods towards Graig.
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As on the above map…
Next?
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Pantfadog Loop… (so anti-clockwise on the above map)

Brett’s video of the first bit…

And the second bit, upto where the byway (to the right) is blocked by the Vauxhall.
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Our view from the back…
I went and knocked on the door of the house and explained that they were blocking the right of way, and would it be okay – rather than disturb them (at just gone ten in the morning) – for us to proceed through the yard to the left to access the rest of the ‘lane? The lady said this would be okay on this occasion, rather than them having to move the Vauxhall…
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So on we went…

As shown in Brett’s next video ๐Ÿ™‚
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Up to the VW Beetle at the top… “Aย nice patina” says Alan – he’s been watching to much “Fast & Loud” I think! ๐Ÿ˜‰

Note the sign at the beginning? A bit ambiguous? It should say “DON’T FOLLOW SAT-NAV!”, it’s a great drop down though! ๐Ÿ˜‰
Brett mentions on the video “It would be nice to come up here, rather than down!” – something I’ve been meaning to do for a while! ๐Ÿ˜‰ Maybe in the summer though?!

Next, up the “storm drain”
At the top Brett says “I can’t remember which way we’re going”… right through that gate mate ๐Ÿ˜‰

Climbing up from Tregeiriog…
Across the C-road at the top…

And then up into the sun, and then right onto “Splashy Lane” (CefnHir-Fynwydd on the maps)
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Snow on the hills ahead and to the right of us…
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Splashy Lane living up to it’s name! ๐Ÿ˜‰
And we rejoin…

Brett’s video… where after coming through the water trough he gets out to record the rest of us coming through –

And then up to a tippy bit on the next incline…
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It feels worse in the vehicle…
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35 degrees at worst!

You can see us waving a wheel in Brett’s next video!

From Riccy and Joel’s perspective ๐Ÿ˜‰
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Quite a trough that! I remember it being a lot deeper before it was filled in a bit!

On we go…

Through the deep trough after the gate, and then onto the end of the ‘lane…
PMSL, I don’t think Brett meant to film the tinkle at the end?! LOL
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On towards the snowy hills…
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And we’re coming down the left side of the route on this map, over a mountain pass –
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Here on Brett’s videos –

and

And then onto…

“Hafod”
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With the little ford in the middle (Eh? That’s a Suzuki, not a Ford… Ummm, sorry!) ๐Ÿ˜‰
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And another one behind ๐Ÿ˜‰

Again, from Riccy and Joel’s perspective…
Next ‘lane then?

Hmmm… we’re not going anywhere on this one…
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There’s a farm trailer parked in the ‘lane…
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So we go north, east and then south to get round it, and take in another ‘lane on the way instead…

Nice little detour ๐Ÿ˜‰
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At the bottom of “Pheasant Steps”
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We gathered up for a break…
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And traditional Brett’s Sausage Rolls and my wife’s Diabetic Mince Swirls!
Before…

Up we go… Nothing like what it used to be in the old days ๐Ÿ˜ฆ
(Anyone else worried about Brett taking to himself? LOL )

The rest of the ‘lane… back to the crossroads above Treigeriog, so Splashy Lane is to our left…
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And lovely views to our right.
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Next!

and through the water trough –
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As seen in Brett’s next video –

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Around the muddy corner and on we go…

To the end by the farm…
Next…
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Up the BOAT…
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We’re doing the route in reverse to what we normally do, if we were doing it the ‘normal’ way round, we’d usually stop here for the festive munches!
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A bit of snow starts to fall, and settle!
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Next! Heading west from the crosshair that marks our position on the map…

Now you can see the snow! ๐Ÿ˜‰
And then…

The second half…
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Up from Pandy next then…

This is what Brett was referring to at the start of the video, another UNSUITABLE FOR MOTORS sign, my favourite road sign ๐Ÿ˜‰
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Lining up for the next bit…
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Brett’s initial comments! ๐Ÿ˜ฎ

Makes you realise how just a small tug can help!
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Next was Riccy –
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Front and Rear Air-Lockers on, and after a couple of attempts, he…
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was up!…
Next, Colin –

And with a bit of a run, he was up in one!
Next then?
ME…

And eventuallyย  up, after getting the front LSD wound up good and proper!
And…

On we go… ๐Ÿ™‚
Onto the next ‘lane –
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“Cefn-Canol”, or as we know it… the V-Gulley!

Brett’s video of him going up, note how he bridges the ‘V’ with a tyre on each side, I did the same when I went up, and then dropped in at the end…

Riccy’s video of the same bit ๐Ÿ™‚

Up through the ruts to the end of the ‘lane, and we turn round…

… and go back down again…

….down the V-gulley ๐Ÿ™‚

Riccy getting a good line with a tyre on each side ๐Ÿ™‚

From his point of view ๐Ÿ˜‰

My video of the others coming down the V-gulley
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Coming down passed the start of the Red Bull downhill mountain-bike course
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With a nice view of Llangollen to our left…

From Brett’s perspective…

To the bottom where we turn back up-hill…

To a gate…

To the end of the ‘lane where we line up, for…
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The final group photo ๐Ÿ™‚

Hmmm, hang-on? Brett’s accidentally taken a wrong turn and done the final ‘lane of the route on his own…?
Only one thing to go then? –

Brett’s closing comments video! ๐Ÿ™‚
And a BIG THANKS from me.. to Brett for plotting and leading, videoing, and opening all the gates, without a gate girl/boy!, and the traditional sausage rolls as well of course! For Alan for sharing the plotting with Brett, closing most of the gates, and coming along this time! ๐Ÿ˜‰ Not often my trusty passenger misses a day out with us! ๐Ÿ˜‰ To Colin and Gary for coming along! ๐Ÿ™‚ Missed you guys, last time was July, I hope they’ll join us sooner next time around? Particularly if we’re in Shropshire next time, close to home? And to Riccy and Joel who where nowhere close to home! What a journey to come and join us, you must be as mas as the rest of us! ๐Ÿ˜‰
’til next time folks…!


 

 

Lake District Day Trip 10/12/17

Sunday the 10th of December 2017, and we’d arranged to meet up in the Lake District just south of Carlisle to drive the best ‘lanes all in one day…
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As usual, Brett had plotted the route and sent it out to us all so we could follow it on our iPads.
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We’d arranged to meet up at 9:30am, so that meant a 6:15am start for me and Al….. errr, hang on? Where’s my faithful companion / gate boy / winch bitch / navigator / long term ‘laning buddy… Ah, bother! Last minute he couldn’t make it, so I had to go it alone…
The silence was deafening! ๐Ÿ˜‰

Brett’s introductory video, he’s also riding with Billy (no-mates) today!
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We met the others in the small hamlet of Welton, close to our first ‘lane of the day…
Left to Right, as is customary, Me & Billy in the blue S200KYS Jimny, Riccy & Billy in the J999MNY Jimny, Brett & Billy in the green Jalapeno Jimny, Gary & Billy in the silver Jimny with a black bonnet and Phil and Rob in the big FUN Jimny… At least one of the group has a friend to come with them… the rest of us are with Billy… LOL
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First ‘lane of the day then?… just to the right on the map above, Borran’s Hill Ford…

And Brett’s second introductory video as we head for the ford, Brett reiterating the lack of friends today, and the fact that Phil and Rob are at the back as there’s two of them, so Rob us on gate-shutting duty today ๐Ÿ˜‰

Brett’s video down to the ford…
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Here’s the ford, the exit is up a railway sleeper at the top of the opposite bank with a sharp right turn onto the lane in the distance…
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Brett leading the way…

Brett’s video of the crossing, and onto the lane and leaving enough room for the rest of us to line up behind him…

Me next…

Riccy
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My photo of him coming through…
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And up the bank…

Gary next
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And then…

Phil and Rob…
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There’s the FUN reference…
On to ‘lane to then… “Petterilgreen Cotts” just up the road…

Brett’s video of the first bit… up to calling for the chainsaw to trim a fallen tree back a bit…
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Trimmed!
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And back to the Jimnys…

And on we go…
To the top where we meet some pheasant breeders coming the other way, so we reverse back to allow them access to their pens…
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On our route we were intending to come back down this ‘lane, but we thought it wise to give it a miss today.
Lane Three then… Barrow Mill Ford –
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ROAD UNSUITABLE FOR VEHICLES BEYOND FARM DEEP FORD
First though…

… we have to wait for the flossies to cross the narrow bridge! They take some convincing (sheep aren’t known for being bright!), as when they see the shimmering water they apparently think they’re heading for the yucky sheepdip, so they all back up! LOL
Nice deep ford though, worth the little wait, and it’s amusing watching the sheep file across the bridge!
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Phil and Rob last, they weren’t on Brett’s video as they were surrounded by sheeps and couldn’t move!

Lane four – Pallet Hill
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Here on the map…

And then onto ‘lane five ‘Newbiggin’… the shaky ‘lane!
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And in this spectacular photo (if I do say so myself!) you can see why, the field seems to have been deliberately ploughed / tilled to shake any vehicles around…

Phil & Rob getting a shaking! ๐Ÿ˜‰

The rest of the ‘lane after the bumpy bit…
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A little bit of scenic tarmac along the way to our next ‘lane, along the side of Ullswater ๐Ÿ™‚
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And then rising up to the start of… the Old Coach Road
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This beast was in the car park, a modified Toyota RAV4… nice!
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Just enough time to make a brew before we’re soon off again…
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Passed a working party from GLASS (The Green Lane Association) of which most of us are members…

And we rejoin Brett’s videos ๐Ÿ˜‰

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As Brett says, stunning scenery!
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And somewhere along here Rob captured this stunning photo too ๐Ÿ™‚
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And the Jimnys!
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A better angle from Gary’s camera ๐Ÿ˜‰

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To the gateway where some other volunteers are repairing the gate

Passed some wild ponies, and you can see that from passed the gate we’re the first ones up here today, as Brett’s Jimny becomes an ice-breaker… This video goes up to the start of the washed out are, so he gets out for a look…

You can see at the start of the video above that Rob was videoing, this isn’t on YouTube (yet?) for me to link into the blog, but I did take a couple of screen grabs from it –
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This one surprised me, as I was worried my new springs were a bit stiff?! No worries there! Chuffed with that articulation!
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Oooh, that looks almost tippy there though! ๐Ÿ˜ฎ

Carrying on, and it’s getting more and more washed out…DSCN6914.jpg
Up round this bit…
Downhill to the gate it looks worse still, so we get out for a look…
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Nice place to park though! ๐Ÿ™‚
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rob7.jpgThe others behind me…
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It was a job getting out of the door! ๐Ÿ˜‰
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Ahhh!…
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The power of nature is amazing, what a flow of water can do?!
Walking back up to the Jimnys…
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Brett demonstrates how deep those troughs really are!

Only one way down then… ably guided by our-Rob we have to edge around the worst bit…

My turn…

Riccy…

Then Phil…

Then down the snow filled ruts of others before us, through the gate, and then…
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… finally, towards the end of the Old Coach Road…
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Until…
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Riccy behind me shouted on the CB that my shock had come astray… again! This happened last trip but the top mount sheared off the chassis, this trip the temporary bolt I fitted through the shock repositioner sheared, so a ‘quick’ fix on the trail –
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Some time wasted, but once again I managed to make a temporary repair and keep it going for the rest of the day…
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Back onto tarmac, and varying the route slightly from the planned one, we’re off along Coniston Water… to drive up Higher Nibthwaite –

Brett’s video of the first bit…
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Awesome view along the way…

The first climbs up…
That’s me honking behind and shouting “Don’t forget to lock your hubs!” ๐Ÿ˜‰
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The second nasty bit where both Brett and I took a couple of attempts!

Phil powering up it though!

To the top, and arranging for the inevitable –
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Group Photo! ๐Ÿ˜‰
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As you can see, we’re losing the light, time is ticking away… it took two hours to drive the Old Coach Road, and my repair didn’t help things either! ๐Ÿ˜ฆ
So we decide to cut short the route and squeeze in another four ‘lanes before heading home though… Gary decides to call it a day though, he’s had a new addition to the family and is keen to get home to –
gary2.jpgTheir new puppy “Caz“. Gorgeous, can’t blame you for heading home Gary ๐Ÿ˜‰

Down we go then…

To the gate at the bottom where we bid farewell to Gary…
And we head off to the next ‘lane –

Gawthwaite, the other way to the usual way we drive it.
Up to the…
DSCN6953.jpgCollapsed little bridge… one thick slate piece has completely fallen into the stream, and another is left at an angle…
We lay a waffle board across, but as Brett edges onto it, the earth at the end slides down the slate, and as he backs off it quickly…
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His other front wheel slips off the side of the thick slate bridge!
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We quickly get my winch rope onto the back corner of his Jimny through a snatch block off a tree, and try and winch him out…
The axle is on the bridge though, and his front nearside wheel dangling over the edge makes it impossible to winch back… even with Riccy and I roped together, the winch pulls us both forward instead of Brett’s Jimny out…
So more thought is needed…
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We eventually use Brett’s winch to pull his front round off the bridge, with his Hi-Lift jack first inserted under the bumper to get the axle off the bridge, and the wheel level with the thick slate bridge so that as he winches the jack brings the wheel onto the bridge, then the others shout for me to winch in and pull his Jimny’s back round as well so all four wheels are back on solid ground! Phew! We thought we’d be there for a while, but with our combined ideas he was out fairly quickly…
That’s enough! We’ve lost the light and it’s time to head home!!! ๐Ÿ˜‰

Out we go back the way we came!…

Brett’s closing remarks ๐Ÿ˜‰
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A bit late, but should be home for 8pm…
Another excellent days greenlaning! Thanks to everyone that came along… without their mates! LOL
Thanks to Brett for plotting and leading as usual, and videoing of course, and thanks to Rob for the photos I’ve lifted via Facebook ๐Ÿ˜‰

Cheers! See you for the next one! Christmas ‘laning the day after Boxing Day, see you then!


 

Oldham to Holfirth 19/11/17

This is a re-run of the route we did back in June
So a similar route had been planned –
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North-West of Manchester then.
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So I set the SatNav on the iPad to guide us in, and it said 1 hour 20 mins, and arriving at about 8:15am, as we’d arranged to meet up at 8:30am, so that gave us time for a petrol stop on the way too…
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Brett text’d me a couple of minutes before we arrived to say he was there, and as we pulled up behind him, the others arrived and pulled in in front…
So from left-to-right : Alan and I in the blue S200KYS Jimny, Brett and his daughter (the lovely) Becky in the green Jalepeno jimny, and Riccy and Joel in the grey Jimny.
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Time to disconnect the Anti-Roll-Bars. all three of us have them… safer on the road, and better articulation offroad.
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And then onto the first ‘lane of the day…
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A nice frosty morning!
Hey, before we start, you’ve forgotten something Brett! –

Brett’s Introductory Video… he nearly forgot then didn’t he? ๐Ÿ˜‰
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A fantastic ‘lane this up into the silhouette of the rising sun…

Whoops, he’s forgotten to lock his hubs as well…!

The second ‘lane, and Becky now driving (as it turns out for the whole of the day! Brett only got to drive the first ‘lane!), cracks the ice on all the large puddles –
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We’re at the back as usual shutting the gates (not many today though) and can see the ice all broken up.

Lane three, down a cobbled old route

Lane four, previously blocked by a farm tanker trailer…
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Now has a more permanent blockage…!

Lane five ๐Ÿ™‚
As you can hear at the end of the video Brett & Becky were discussing whether they had drive or not… It turned out the transfer box stick had popped out, so we stopped for a while and stripped the stick out, realigned the selector rods with a big screwdriver and then reassembled everything… Luckily, it has happened to us for a while, but does from time to time! LOL

Onto lane number six then! Lot’s of dogging going on on this ‘lane! A small group of motorbikers stop behind us to leave a gap between us and them ๐Ÿ™‚

Lane seven.
I did take some photos of these ‘lanes, but I thought I’d keep the photos to a minimum, as they are all repeated within the videos, and as I said at the top of this blog, we did this route fairly recently too.

Lane eight.
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Sign looking back at the bottom… Yup! Unsuitable for Motor (Car)s! You can hear Brett mention it on the video above… ๐Ÿ˜‰
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Turning into Lane nine…

What a driver TLB (The Lovely Becky) is, Huh?! ๐Ÿ˜‰
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It certainly looks tippy!
Carrying on…

Bit flatter along here, Brett and Becky stop to talk to a walker who can’t believe we’ve come up from the road below!

The last third…
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A couple of photos of the last bit…
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Carrying on…

Through the little ford…
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And then onto a fantastic ‘lane –
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Watched by a big shire horse behind the gate… and apparently the home owner, more on that later on in the day and the blog…

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Photo from the climb up…

And then along the top of the reservoirs below us to our right –
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Here at the crosshair roughly in the middle of the iPad’s screen…

On we go…

Dropping down to the reservoirs…
And the chap with the black Labrador asked if we’d taken a wrong turn somewhere?! ๐Ÿ˜‰
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Down to the Jimny at the bottom.

And then across the reservoir dam…
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And then we’re soon off tarmac again –
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As in Brett’s next video –

Our next route. over another dam –
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Is still blocked off with diversions round it…
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So we make our way back to Holmbridge to drop down the yellow C road to just above Crossley’s Plantation…
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Passing the ranger while turning left onto the ‘lane…

Excellent driving from TLB again ๐Ÿ˜‰
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And Riccy behind showing some nice flex as he goes around the corner and into the axle twisters…

Carrying on…
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Another sign for the collection at the start of the next ‘lane…

Brett’s video of it.
The next one…
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… is a no through road? ๐Ÿ˜‰

At the beginnning of the video you can see a tour bus, as this is “Last of the Summer Wine” country ๐Ÿ˜‰
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We then pulled over for a break in a (closed) pub car park…
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And Brett pulled out a (diabetic) Birthday Cake for me! It was my fiftieth a few days before this trip! Very nice rich chocolate cake, and made with sweeteners rather than sugars, as I’m a diabetic… what a nice thought! Cheers Brett! ๐Ÿ˜‰

On to ‘lane seventeen then!

Lane eighteen, Meal Hill, to the point where we have to stop for some repairs, again…
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Whoops!
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Nice place to stop though!

Soon repaired and off we go…

Lane nineteen, a BOAT around a farm….
And then we reached the end of the route, so we turned around and went back the way we came taking in some of the best ‘lanes on the way back, doing them the other way round…
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Ahhh, along the way though, my Jimny developed a knocking noise from the rear…
On investigation the offside rear shock has come away from the crossmember bracket, taking some of the steel with it… bugger! That will be a job to get to!
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That’s torn it! ๐Ÿ˜‰
Ah well, only one thing to do…
Carry on! LOL it’ll be alright, the spring is the right length to stay in place… hopefully!

Back down ‘Ramsden’.
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Nice shot of Riccy on the axle twisting section
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And towards the bottom… twisting up nicely again…

New little ‘white road’ discovered along the way ๐Ÿ™‚
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Over the dam…

And then that little white gets us back towards the reservoir run.
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The others turning left as we shut the gate…

Up above the reservoirs…
And then back to the UCR by the shire horse we drove earlier upwards…

Where the chap at the bottom writes our number plates down, supposedly so someone can send us the bill for driving a legal byway, a UCR…?
I stopped a good six feet infront of him so he could write my registration down to, and also explained that it was an unclassified county road we were driving fully legally, not sure what he’ll do with our registrations, but we’ll keep you posted…
Anyway –
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Some nice angles coming down there…
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It seemed more than 22 degrees though?!
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Back through the little ford… well we did! ๐Ÿ˜‰

Back down the rutted bit to the A road below…
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Riccy and Joel in front.
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Nice angle…
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29 degrees this time…

And then the first great ‘lane of the day becomes the last great ‘lane of the day…
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And back out and onto tarmac…
We gathered for a chat, shake of hands, reconnect the anti-roll-bars, and then headed off on our separate ways home…

Brett’s closing remarks, indeed ahead of us somewhere as we stopped for fuel and a cold Diet Coke…
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My trusty SatNav said we’d be home for just before six… time for a kebab, shower and a good soak in the hot-tub! ๐Ÿ˜‰
Jimny now awaiting repairs ready for the next run, to the Lake District in three weeks time…
An awesome day, thanks to everyone! ๐Ÿ™‚


 

Greenlaning Locally 29/10/17

Sunday the 29th of October 2017, and Brett, Alan and I had arranged to meet up and go and drive some local ‘lanes around my area… so Landranger Map Number 116 basically!
Alan had plotted the route for us, and I’d plotted it on MemoryMap for myself and Brett to follow as we drove –
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We arranged to meet up again at the WhistleStop Cafe in Rhuddlan –
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So, just the two Jimnys, Alan and I in my blue S200KYS, and Brett with his daughter (the lovely) Becky for the day out with her Dad. ๐Ÿ™‚
Another excellent Breakfast devoured and we were off –

Brett’s customary introductory video.
First (two) ‘lane(s) of the day then –
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“Pant-glas” Between Llanasa and Axton. coming down south is a BOAT, and then going East it’s actually on the Landranger map as a RUPP (Road Used as a Public Path) that were mostly reclassified under the NERC Act, but this one remains driveable as there’s a ByWay sign pointing up it –
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This is at the end of the RUPP on the map, I didn’t take any other photos as it’s flat, but a gentle introduction to the day, and, here’s Brett’s video of it –

Lane two – from Llanasa down to Gronant, is a BOAT –
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Starts out nice and flat…
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View of the coast to our right, a sea of caravans!
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Dropping down to the coast…

Here’s Brett’s video of the ‘lane…
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Armco barriers? There’s a deep old quarry to our right…
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And here we are at the other end of the ‘lane…
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A few hundred yards down the road, and we’re onto another…
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A funny little BOAT going downhill to the end of the dual carriageway below. You can just see the end of the last ‘lane at the bottom left edge of the iPad’s screen.
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Popping out an the odd crossing at the end of the dual carriageway on the map above…
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Odd as it’s a horse-specific crossing! Even these button panels are high to suit the rider on horseback…

Brett’s Video of this ‘lane.
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Next ‘lane, from Gronant up to Gwaenysgor…
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Up to the trees ahead and then left…
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Under a fallen tree with the sun making a dramatic photo ๐Ÿ™‚
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And then up to the Police Communications compound at the top that gives this area the name “Radar Hill”.

Brett’s video of the climb up…

And then, Brett’s video of us driving down from Radar Hill to Gwaenysgor.
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Map showing the close proximity of these first 4 (5) ‘Lanes…
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Brett and Becky entering the gate to the next two ‘lanes…
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East of Tremeirchion, first BOAT goes south and then the next one East…
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A really green lane!
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Brett and Becky behind us…

Brett’s first video of this ‘lane

And the second ๐Ÿ˜‰
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Start of the second BOAT
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Lovely ‘lane this one…

Here’s Brett’s video of the first bit up to a gate…
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Look at that for a greenlane photo! ๐Ÿ˜‰
That epitomises greenlaning for me, I love the gnarly, tight and scratchy ‘lanes, but I also love the scenic ones too, that’s one photo I’m going to print!
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Approaching the top / end of the ‘lane…

Brett’s video of the second half of the ‘lane.
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This is a ‘lane Alan is currently researching…
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It appears on the Landranger map as black lines so it’s a “path” but not really classified properly, so that’ll be queried with Flintshire’s Rights of Way department before we drive it… The other end appears the same, so it looks driveable, we just need to check the legality of doing so…
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Particularly as it appears as a(n) UCR on the Explorer series maps?…
Lane 7 then…
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Near Brynford (Holywell)
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Another byway…

As Brett’s video shows, it’s much more boggier and rutted than I’ve ever seen it before?

We then drive over the golf course and over a small access bridge over the A55 North Wales coastal expressway, Brett remarks over the CB where are we going, and as you can hear on the video, I just wanted to have a look at the old course of the BOAT as it has been split in two by the A55 road –
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So the bit in the orange oval is the old part of the BOAT

Up the right hand bit and then doubling back to underย  Pen-y-Ball Top, I stopped as I could hear a click from my right front wheel ๐Ÿ˜ฆ

And then to the (dead-) end of the ‘lane, where I discovered my wheel nuts were loose?! So a quick lend of Brett’s rattle gun to tighten the remaining ones up, and I retrieved a spare one from my parts box that sits with the tool box under the internal rollcage… Fixed!
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The end of the BOAT, beyond the hedge is the A55 full of traffic…
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Next, “Narrow Lane” which isn’t! Narrow, or a Lane! It’s on the map as a BOAT, but…

… is wide and pot-holed!
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Looking back at the same portion of map again, this is in the bottom middle to the right of the word “Calcoed”, a BOAT?!
Next, a new ‘lane?! This close to home?
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At the red crosshair, planning to drive south-east…

Brett’s video shows us arriving at the potential ‘lane, and me getting out to talk to the adjacent landowner…

And then the next video shows us turning around, and then stopping at the top for a chat. The landowner had said it was too narrow (and rocky?) at the top for vehicles to pass through. As can be heard on the videos we (Alan) did have a letter from Flintshire CC’s RoW dept to say it was a legal vehicular route, but I think Alan had given me the letter and I’d mis-filed (lost!) it… Without it I didn’t want to drive the ‘lane infront of the adjacent landowner… So I’d turned round…
But then, a group of five bikers approached us as we were chatting! So I flagged them down, and it turned out Alan knew the lead motorcyclist from the trials he organises, so we had a good chat, and they too said it was a bit narrow at the top, but bikes regular used it…
So, that confirmed it was a legal right of way, so we drove around to the other end of the ‘lane to have a look, and met the bikers again, coming off the ‘lane, and they again said it was a bit narrow… Hmmmm, but so are our little Jimnys compared to most 4x4s?…
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At the other end, Alan (pictured) and then Brett go for a walk down the whole length of the ‘lane back to where I spoke to the adjacent landowner in the huge tractor…
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So we’re now here at the other end…
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Ummm?! The gates open? Here we go…
The guys have walked it and think we can fit through in our little Jimnys…

As Brett says on his video, it is narrow! Ok for Jimnys though! And best driven at this time of year from the farm in a North-Westerly direction as we did on the video… In the summer we may try it in the other direction when the ground is firmer…
A nice new find Alan! ๐Ÿ˜‰
Lane 11 next then, at Lixwm that appears to be wrongly signed as a footpath, but that sign should be pointing through the field to the right…
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It even looks like a footpath!

Here’s Brett’s video of it…
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Looking back at Brett & Becky
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Another ๐Ÿ™‚
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Passing the end of the bridleway, here –
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In the orange circle looking west, to our right as we come off the ‘lane above…
The next ‘lane was a surprise as it was a yellow C road on the maps but had an “Unsuitable for Motors” sign at the start of it? –
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Here’s Brett’s video of it…
Some C-Road?!
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That’s this stretch of ‘road’.
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Next three ‘lanes then, all UCRs with ORPA dots…

The first “Rhewl”
A quick bit of tarmac and then –

“Pant-y-ffuon”

And then finally “Garneddwen”…
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Next! Another BOAT, here –
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Heading North (so downhill) above Nannerch…

Brett’s video of it ๐Ÿ™‚
One more ‘lane and we’ll stop for lunch Brett ๐Ÿ˜‰
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This one –
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Above Kevin Keegan’s old house…

Up to the top, through the gate, and..
DSCN6628.jpgA spot of lunch! ๐Ÿ™‚
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Next! A nice big long BOAT along the edge of the Clwyd valley…
DSCN6629.jpgLeafy start…
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But it soon opens up to views of the valley to our left…

Hang on? That was enthusiastic waving from a walker / rambler?! ๐Ÿ˜‰
Oh my god, what a place to meet… Malcolm Price, my Dad’s old partner in Castle Steel… we stopped for a handshake and a quick catch-up, they’d walked the length of the ‘lane from the car park at the other end near the TV mast… Good to see you Mal’! ๐Ÿ˜‰ xxx

On we go…
Ending up as Brett says, for a blog photo of the scenery with the Jimnys in the foreground –
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Worth the stop though?! ๐Ÿ˜‰

On we go again… to the little car park at the end.
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We then turned east at the car park to go down another ‘lane…

And then looped back to the car park again, to go west…
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Another Byway…

And down the other side…
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Great views on the way down.
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A short run of tarmac through Denbigh, and we’re soon onto our next Byway –

A bit of a stand off at the end, but they move the tractor in the end ๐Ÿ˜‰
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Next ‘lane at Nantglyn…

And…
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… out comes my little cordless chainsaw to chop this into pieces to get it off the ‘lane…

On we go again… until… Hmmm, I can’t drive over this Brett? ๐Ÿ˜‰
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Looks a bit big for my cordless chainsaw?
Nope! 36V Bosch gets through it and chops it up into manageable pieces to get it off the ‘lane…

On we go!
Next… Hafod Dafydd! This time, after Alan had seen recent TRF videos on Youtube, it appears the bottom end is now driveable, and not full of slurry as seen previously…

Fantastic ‘lane that!
Last but one coming up then…
On the way there we were overtook by a couple of rally cars, waving as we indicated it was safe for them to pass us.

Gate!

More and more gates! ๐Ÿ˜ฆ
Our last ‘lane of the day was supposed to be at Rhydgaled, but we decided to give that a miss and head home….. via “Moelfre” as Brett had commented by email when I’d sent him the route “What no Moelfre?”, so we added it on the way home especially for him…
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Top-down today, easterly direction…
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Down passed the badger’s sets humps…

Brett’s video of the first bit…
Pausing to cut up and move a small branch…

Up to the bit where we have to get a wheel on each side and drive over a gulley… Only –
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A tree has fallen…
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And although we’ve cut and removed all the smaller branches, the trunk is too low for us to pass under whilst bridging the gulley, so we’ll have to drive into it with our left wheels…

So I tried to climb the left bank… but then reached for the tree strop…
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After a couple of failed attempts, out comes the spade… to dig the diff out!

Next attempt and after a quick tug she’s free and out…
With many thanks to Brett! ๐Ÿ˜‰
Then Becky’s attempt…

Up first time!… What a woman! ๐Ÿ™‚
And in homage, here’s my video! –

LOL… Well Done Becky! ๐Ÿ˜‰

Brett’s closing remarks… ๐Ÿ˜‰
I didn’t mean to spray his windscreen! I was stuck in four wheel drive, and then when it did chunk out I missed a gear, got it into first and ragged it, and (accidently!) sprayed Brett’s Jimny with mud… Whoops!
He is speaking to me again now though! ๐Ÿ˜‰
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And another pin in my Landranger 116 map!… The circle is a ten mile radius from my house… There’s still a few more pins to collect though ๐Ÿ˜‰

MANY THANKSย … to Alan for planning, plotting and liaising with the relevant council’s RoW departments, and for navigating and opening all the gates, and clearing trees and winch bitching! Thanks to Brett for videoing, closing gates, and letting Becky drive most of the ‘lanes… And thanks to Becky for showing us up on the last ‘lane “Moelfre” by getting through the gulley first time! And for driving all day, and looking as lovely as ever…!

Another great day! THANKS ALL! ๐Ÿ˜‰


 

North Wales 17/09/17

Sunday the 17th of September, and a small contingency from “our little group” had arranged to meet up and drive some (favourite) ‘lanes that our- Alan had plotted for us…
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We arranged to meet at the Whistle-Stop cafe on Rhuddlan’s HTM Industrial Estate for breakfast at 8:15am, as they open at 8:00am.
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From left to right then… errr, Me & Alan in the blue S200KYS and Brett and Dave-T “the Handyman” in the green Jalapeno…

Brett’s customary introductory video… Yup, just the two of us today?! ๐Ÿ˜ฆ
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As Brett said at the end of his video, the first ‘lane of the day is “Moelfre”
Alan goes to open the gate…

Then, as you can see in Brett’s video above, Dave-T comes to help, and I pop my head out to remind Alan he’ll have to get in, or walk up the field! LOL
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In the middle of the tunnel of bushes we spy a small sign tied to a cut back bush…
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“This roadway has been cleared by volunteers from North Wales Trail Riders Fellowship” – Good on you boys! The TRF is the motorcycle-bound version of our GLASS – the Green Laning ASSociation…
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Nice photo from Dave-t showing us pushing through the bushes at the end of the tunnel… I remark to Alan that it’s a lot different leading for once (Brett usually gets the honour) as all we can see is a wall of foilage, it’s better being behind when it’s been flattened! ๐Ÿ˜‰

Carrying on… a very short video before we’re through the gate and out for a look at…
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… the usual little trickle of a stream now in full flood…

Brett’s Video of the rest of the ‘lane…
You can hear Dave-T ask where the mounds of earth came from, it’s actually a Badger’s set on the right of the ‘lane, and the little black-and-white buggers have thrown all the earth out to make their tunnels / house ๐Ÿ˜‰
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Supplementing the video… Dave-T catches us bridging the washed out bit… Remember but Brett says about it being “more interesting coming the other way”, as we were coming back via this ‘lane the other way on the way home later… ๐Ÿ˜‰
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This is the big step in the middle of the ‘lane / video.
DSCN6389.jpgNext couple of ‘lanes then… here on the right…
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Nice and overgrown…

Brett’s Video of it, and then onto the start of Pant-Idda
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Dave-T captures us sneaking around a tree stump to get onto the ‘lane proper…
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My favourite bit of the ‘lane! It’s like a steep sided trough with a muddy bottom…

Brett’s Video of the rest of the ‘lane…
Again some stills highlights of the video –
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This is all we could some from the front! Bushes!
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All you can do is aim for the middle! ๐Ÿ˜‰
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Yup, that’s the ‘lane straight ahead!
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The gate at the end of the ‘lane is somewhere level with those trees… keep on pushing forward!
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Alan heads down the middle to open the gate…
Back on the tarmac and it sounds like we have a problem ๐Ÿ˜ฆ
There was a grating noise as we drove along… So I disappeared underneath for a look…
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Thanks to Brett for these next four photos!
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And found the cause of the noise! A bit of wood stuck underneath the front! So we carried on…
BUT!… The propshaft or transfer box were still making a noise… and it got worse when I pushed the transfer stick left ๐Ÿ˜ฆ
Bugger, I thought the transfer box had gone… so I disappeared underneath for a look…
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On my rubber mat I keep inside the rear door this time…
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Aha! What’s this?…
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Sigh of relief! It’s “just” some thick metal wire wrapped around the intermediary prop between the gearbox and transfer box –
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A pair of snips from Brett and we’re soon back on the road again…