Moonrakers become Sunseekers! Ride through the night under a full moon to the coast. Return via a few Dorset hills passing Glastonbury Tor, use the Strawberry Line to Bristol.
WHEN: +iCalFri 11th November 2022 22:00 - 18:32 Sat 12th November 2022
WHERE:Felix Road Adventure Playground Felix Road Easton, BS5 0JW
Route notes and a variety of navigation files will be available usually the Monday before the event. Use the interactive map for an overview of what lies ahead (subject to change); toggle the elevation & grade on/off by clicking the key. *Please note plugin's 'grade' is experimental so take it with a pinch of salt.
Moonrakers & Sunseekers is the winter 300 to do! Described by some as a new classic audax. Come join the fun!
Head straight out of Bristol through Bath and watch the trail of lights climb the Cat 4 climb of Bathwick Hill; the biggest of the ride. Continue on easily navigated roads to Devizes, passing The Crammer where legend has it Wiltshire folk were caught by the Excisemen raking for ‘the moon’. Continue down the Avon Valley through Salisbury and edging The New Forest, along the coast to Poole Harbour. Moonrakers wane as Sunseekers come into view; those luxury yachts at Poole Quay! Heading home pass through the chocolate box village of Milton Abbas and past the Abbey in the Dorset Hills and on. Into Somerset passing Glastonbury Tor and across The Levels to Axbridge. Then use The Strawberry Line railway path through the end of The Mendips and pass orchards to stop at The Strawberry Line Cafe before returning to Bristol.
Route: It is an advisory route, you may take a different one to that supplied as long as you visit all the controls within time and answer the info questions; no allowance will be made for any extra distance this may occur.
Groups: Whilst COVID restrictions have eased I may still use large groups and a staggered start time to ease the pressure on controls of every one arriving simultaneously. Please include any body you wish to ride with in a group in the booking form. Your average moving speed will help tier groups but isn’t vital.
Provided: Tea and coffee at the start. Breakfast jackets, hot drinks & bananas at Lilliput Sea Scout Hut about half way. Probably tarka dal at the finish and hot drinks. Cake!
Parking: On street local parking. I’d suggest trying the roads around Bannerman Road Community Academy; All Hallows, Graham & Normanby. Please be considerate of residents and keep the noise down.
There will likely be sand on the promenade and mud on the Strawberry Line. Nothing many others haven’t managed in the past.
Should capacity be reached a waiting list will be used. To ensure efficient management it will be a paid entry through the booking system below. Should a place become available you will be notified in order that you have a space and considered entered as if you entered normally. From the Wednesday before the event if a space then becomes available you can decline this space; a full refund will then be given as it will to all those who don’t gain a space.
Type & Validation
- The route is advisory - you just have to visit the controls and gain proof of passage within time limits where specified; there may be parts that you'd like to take a different route and that is entirely up to you; the time limits for the controls don't change!
- Validation: Instant - you get to take your validated card home straight away at the end of the event.
What others think.
A great Friday night out with friends
A brillantly well run 300 audax with a sureal start riding through Bristol and Bath as the pubs get to last orders. Some helpful group riding at 2am helped to get the miles ticked off, with good weather and good banter. We took a detour to Stonehenge before the Salisbury control (which had an amazing selection of cake).
The ebbs and flows of audaxing came out in this one, with the drizzle and cold affecting me just before dawn. Waiting for a lovely sunrise, all we got was greyness, which made the stretch to Podimore Services on lumpy lanes pretty hard work. Never been so glad to get to a Greggs!
A fun final push along the Strawberry Line provides a welcome distraction, having to keep concentration levels up on the shared use path, so avoiding the tiredness.
A brilliantly well organised night and day on the bike.
I have had my eye on this ride for a while and decided with a slightly curtailed Covid schedule in 2021 to add it to the calendar. I imagine that the enjoyment maybe weather dependant at this time of year, but we were quite lucky for this instalment.
I’m rubbish at remembering the minutiae of rides but the start was fast with the always enjoyable experience of passing hostelries as they kick out while we were just starting our alternative night out.
As the group thinned and we passed through several well stocked controls the night life emerged in the quiet lanes with several owls swooping in to see what was going on.
The sea front section was very enjoyable, with some sand but nothing that would warrant any evasive action and definitely no more “mixed terrain” than your average Audax.
The Sea Scout hut was again staffed by lovely people giving up their time for our niche past time and then back into the night and more black lanes.
With the sunrise came mist and a definite drop in temperature, the Strawberry line is again nothing more that you would expect on the average UK Audax and the Park Runners kept to their left as I kept to mine.
The finish allowed some de briefing with other riders over a lovely Daal served by Will.
Definitely one to recommend, especially if you plan longer rides that will need over night cycling.
As always, well run, well staffed and a well thought out interesting route.
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