Steaming On! 600

Steaming On! 600 is an excursion to the heart of GWR’s Engine Yard then back across the West Country including the chance to say hi to Isambard Kingdom Brunel himself, may be more than once!

Bristol, Bristol, City of | Sat 31st Aug 2024 @ 06:00

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WHEN: +iCal
Sat 31st August 2024
06:00 - 22:00
Sun 1st September 2024
WHERE:
Bristol Temple Meads
Station Approach
Bristol, BS1 6QF
Validation:
BRM
Steaming On! 600 1
Award Distance:
600
Total Distance:
609km
Duration:
40h0
Speeds:
15-30kph
Climb:
8016m
AAA: 8
Platinum Grimpeur
Entry:
£25.00
Entry closes:
29/08/24
Steaming On! 600 3Enquiries
BRIEF:

Steaming On! 600 is an excursion to the heart of GWR’s Engine Yard then back across the West Country including the chance to say hi to Isambard Kingdom Brunel himself, may be more than once!

New for 2024 is Steaming On! 600. Visiting Steam at GWR’s Swindon Works, passing Bishops Lydiard Station on the West Somerset Railway, following old railways and current, using some old rail trails and crossing the Tamar with views of the Royal Albert Bridge. And a few brush ins with Isambard Kingdom Brunel himself…

Description:

Begin by departing through Brunel’s original station before making your way to the Bristol & Bath Railway Path (the beginning of the National Cycle Network) for a traffic free exit of the city. Climb atop the Cotswolds and head east to Swindon and the old Engine Yard’s of the Great Western Railway for the first control at Steam.

Exit through the GWR village and head south passing Avebury as you cross North Wilts AONB and into the Vale of Pewsey to then head west, tracking the route of the GWR Cornish Riviera Express to Frome. Then a gradual ascent to the southern edge of the Mendip Hills before descending through Wells, passing its cathedral and onto the Somerset Levels. Over the Quantocks to Bishops Lydeard then south of Exmoor to Barnstaple. Follow the Tarka Trail to Okehampton then the Granite Way to Lydford for your sleep stop.

Steaming on into day 2 cross the Tamar at Horsebridge into Cornwall. Then from Luckett take on the full Kit Hill climb to its summit for some cracking views before back down heading to Saltash; under the bridges before crossing the Tamar once more with views of The Royal Albert Bridge. Join the Plym Valley Railway Trail and head to Yelverton. Then up and over Dartmoor to Exeter. Cross the Blackdown Hills back into Somerset. Over the Mendips you go before back to the Arrivée in Bristol.

Details:
  • Airbeds and blankets provided at the sleep stop.
  • Food and drink provided at the sleep stop.
  • If you want to use a drop bag keep it small; drop off at mine on Friday night or I can take a small number from the start on my bike trailer, collection will be from mine once I’m back from the sleep stop.
  • Postal finish – stamped envelope provided.
  • A short section of canal path in Swindon, the Tamar Trail and The Granite Way are unmetalled but a good consolidated surface.
Navigation:

Route notes and a variety of files/links will be available usually the Monday before the event.


The interactive map above is a guide, subject to change and not necessarily the final version. Toggle 'chart' for elevation & approx. slope %; now works in full screen too.

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: Not Instant - brevet cards are returned to AUK for homologation. I will post them on to you UNLESS you deselect brevet card return postage (see the roll over tip in booking form).
Venue details:
Parking:

Long stay available at Temple Meads or cheaper at Bristol Parkway.

For full details see Bristol Temple Meads
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Bookings close 29/08/24 or when full.

PLEASE NOTE:
  • If you are U18 (or booking for an U18 rider) please contact me direct so I can provide the relevent form and enter manually.
  • This event is run in accordance with Audax UK's Regulations and is covered by their insurance.
  • Audax UK Temporary Membership @ £3.00 is required to participate if you aren't an Audax UK or CTC/CUK member; it will be added automatically if a membership number isn't provided.
  • Please make sure your AUK membership is up to date.
  • Once payment is completed you will receive an email from booking-donotreply@pedalution.co.uk and will be redirected back to a page saying what happens next.
Ticket Type Price Spaces
Entry £25.00

Steaming On! 600 5
Eco Eco Mini 95% Recycled Super Strong Reuseable Bag, also at the start for £2 cash if available.
New 'few use plastic' ziplok bags to protect your brevet card will no longer be offered. Used ones will be available.
Alternatively bring your own version.

  • On the following Stripe payment page use the back arrow by Pedalution logo to delete your resrvation; you can then amend any details and PROCEED TO PAYMENT again.
  • Once payment is made the reservation becomes a booking.
  • You have 30mins to complete payment before this reservation is deleted (so if you get in a kerfuffle with incorrect details, payment issues etc walk away for an hour and try again).
  • If you haven't already entered an event on this site then an account will automatically be created when you PROCEED TO PAYMENT.
  • If you have already entered an event on this site then log in with that email.
  • You will receive a registration email to validate your email and create a password; this will be required to access further event information found on this page.
  • If you PROCEED TO PAYMENT then don't complete, or go back, you may encounter an error saying 'account already exists' or similar. Look for the password email to validate or use 'lost your password' found in the login area in the hamburger menu and footer across the site or the sidebar on event pages.
  • Information specific to this event and generic for the future will be stored in your account.
  • You may delete your account at any time but if you do so before the event you remove yourself from the entry list.

You are attending this event.

The following ride details are currently: Pending - all specifics are usually updated the 5th day before the event.



  • Please flick through the following tabs fully and make any preparations before the event.
  • Route files & links will be found under the 'Route' tab.
  • The event/route specific information will be finalised usually the Monday before the event and you will get an email reminder 3 days prior from bookings-noreply@pedalution.co.uk - add it to your address book to save any disappointment.
  • Should you be unable to attend the event I have enabled cancellation from 'My Bookings'. This will aid me in keeping controls informed as to how many to expect and also reduce wastage when printing the brevet cards. Remember there is no option to refund or transfer if you are unable to attend.
  • You will receive your brevet card at the start. Should you start the ride and be unable to finish my phone number is within; please drop me a text with your full name to let me know you won't be finishing so volunteers and myself aren't waiting around longer than necessary at controls and the finish.
  • Please use 'Enquires' link above for any queries.

New to audax? Have a look at Audax UK's About for an overview & FAQs for commonly asked questions.

  • Until the route is finalised the interactive map above will give you an idea of where you are going.
  • It is advisable to study the route notes prior to the event for further details; especially if you are just using a GPX breadcrumb trail to navigate. These are also the 'cuesheet' within the RWGPS route; zoom the map to your desired level, click on a cue and it will focus the map at that cue.
  • Every effort is made to identify road closures before the event and provide alternatives where necessary; however I can not account for any emergency closures that are required.
  • A variety of surfaces may be encountered, some may be as smooth as a baby's bum, others potholed nightmares, or somewhere in between; if any unmetalled sections are used this will be noted in the Event Info above and now visible as 'unpaved' within RWGPS.
  • I do my utmost to select low traffic routes but there may be times busier sections are required.
  • Mudguards aren't mandatory but if you can fit them why wouldn't you?
  • I would always recommend a set of lights as you never know what could happen.
  • Similarly consider carrying 2 space blankets; they cost nothing, are tiny, and can keep you and an other warm should the unfortunate happen.
EXTRA DETAILS:
Usually updated the 5th day before the event - you can join the RWGPS Event in the meantime. The latter 3 'Route File' links below will only work once updated.
Route Files:
CSV

CSV route notes - these can be edited in any spreadsheet software.

PDF

PDF route notes - a version with maps is available in linked RWGPS route (no account necessary to use the official PDF - use 'More v') or the event.

GPX

GPX with control waypoints - if re-uploading to an online planner please make private so as not to confuse others in the future - use this tool to split at waypoints and/or simplify.

RWGPS Links:
Event

RWGPS Event - at least a free account needed but you will get full premium features, including offline maps & voice nav for the app, regardless of your subscription level. To sync to your device (Wahoo, Garmin Edge) you need to join this first.

Route

RWGPS Route - no account needed but you will lack a few advanced features such as early turn warnings.

See the RWGPS App for my tips to use your phone for navigation and maximising battery life.

Troubleshooting:
  • Can't copy the RWGPS route to your account? I have disabled this so should any changes be necessary there is the one correct version.
  • I do not provide technical services for your device having never used anything other than the RWGPS app.
  • Can't add it to Garmin Connect? It isn't an activity. Transfer it to your Garmin via USB.
  • Can't send to your device? Join the RWGPS event.
EXTRA DETAILS:
Usually updated the 5th day before the event.
Start:

Please arrive at least 10 minutes before the depart time to collect your brevet card.

Bristol Temple Meads - opens new tab for map.
Station Approach, Bristol, Bristol, City of, BS1 6QF

Access:

  • Bike - Centrally located and easily accessed.
  • Car -

    Bristol Temple Meads is within Bristol's Clean Air Zone (CAZ) so unless you have an exempt vehicle you will need to pay the charge; check here. Drop off is available outside the station.

    Directions from the main routes in:

  • Train - It is at Bristol Temple Meads so I'll let you figure that one out...

Parking:
Car Park -

Long stay available at Temple Meads or cheaper at Bristol Parkway.

Food & Drink:
No refreshments.
**Will check station facility opening times.
Unless specified otherwise above.

Accommodation:

Finish:

As above. - opens new tab for map & a few details.

Route Controls:

Usually updated the 5th day before the event.

This is what 'audax' is all about. Travelling between controls to collect proof of passage (PoP) to prove you have cycled the distance. The above controls are found in your brevet card, the route notes, as POIs with the route, and waypoints with the GPX. Your brevet card it to be filled out as you progress around the route. PoP is obtained in several ways. It is highly recommended you carry a pen or pencil to fill your brevet card as you go; if it is a long event numbering any receipts to correspond with the control number will save you time later, then keeping them in order is next level!

Types of control:
  • CONTROL - a place or venue where you obtain PoP which can be done in several ways. You will be able to get food and/or drink, also WC will be available.
    • Manned - a volunteer or venue member of staff will stamp your card providing PoP. All controls are thus unless specified as...
    • Free - you must obtain PoP from that place that has a time and date, usually a receipt from a cafe, shop or ATM.
  • INFO - a question found in your brevet card that is relevent to the location needs to be answered and recorded.
  • CHECKPOINT - similar to a control but there may not be any facilities present.
  • SECRET - now that would be telling wouldn't it!
USING YOUR PHONE & RWGPS APP:

I use the RWGPS app on my phone to navigate audax events by using spoken cues, I also use it to route check and proof my route notes. This IMHO is the best of all worlds. I don't need to look at a screen (but I can check if I want), I get clear directions when needed (you may need to get used to my shorthand which gets spoken as such), I get a warning if I'm off route, the battery lasts a lot longer than constantly using the screen; especially nowadays as phone batteries are getting bigger plus many are able to rapid charge in a short amount of time. All you need is a good case and mount for inclement weather.

  • Install the app.
  • Join the event.
  • Go to the route.
  • Send to device.
  • Open app and confirm download.
  • In settings (exact location varies depending on iOS or Android) to optomise for best battery use:
    • Logging - adjust interval: every 10s is best for the battery, logs your ride but won't get you any KOMs; every 1s uses 10x more battery power to write data but may get you a KOM if you pedal quick.
    • Navigation - Spoken alerts ON | Off-course alerts ON | others at your discretion.
    • Handlebar mode ENABLED - this will keep RWGPS above any screen lock so you can recall it if needed by pressing power button or similar.
    • Handlebar mode - Screen OFF for cues | Proximity Wake OFF (otherwise changes in light will turn the screen on) | Keep screen on NEVER.
    • Offline mode ENABLED - when you start riding.
  • Better still use flight/aeroplane mode whilst riding.
  • You can adjust the text-speech settings via your phone settings; the type of voice, playback speed etc.

Most of the battery drain on a phone is from the screen. By using voice commands you eliminate this but can still view the map if needs be. The second biggest drain whilst cycling is the phone itself searching for a signal as you move between cell towers; putting the phone into flight/aeroplane mode whilst moving solves this problem; you can easily turn data back on to #tag that #CAKE at the next stop!

ANDROID:

Make sure battery optimisation is turned off otherwise Android will recognise RWGPS as an excessive battery drain and can limit its functionality. This will be particularily evident if you stop for a bit without GPS signal then continue; the app will appear to be functioning correctly but Android will limit it and data can be lost from the stop point until the app is restarted. There may be a similar feature in iOS.

  • Settings >Apps.
  • Find RWGPS and expand Advanced >Battery.
  • If it says optomised then select and wait for all apps to load.
  • Make sure the apps displayed are 'All apps', find RWGPS and select.
  • Select 'Don't optimise'. Exit settings.

You have agreed to and declared that at the time of the ride...

  • You have no symptoms relating to COVID-19.
  • That you are not self-isolating.
  • That you are not required to quarantine during the period of the event.
  • That no local or other regulations prohibit you from attending this event.
  • You agree that if you develop any such symptoms before the event you will not attend.
  • You agree that if I develop any such symptoms immediately after the event I shall inform the organiser.

Please follow any wishes of private establishments en route. I highly recommend carrying a mask/buff/scarf etc for the simple act of covering your face if needed when indoors. Any specifics requested by controls will be noted in the control tab.

Audax UK's current policy can be found here.