I started out making a best of 2011 video and then extended it to include the last 3 years. Apart from it being previously seen footage to new music, quite a bit of the 2011 stuff is new and there are some older unseen short bits and a few alternate shots that weren’t in the original videos. For more of these videos see the Video pages for the last 3 years.
Posts Tagged ‘HaggTor’
Posts about the track HaggTor in the Peak District.
On the Saturday of most recent May bank holiday weekend James and I made a late start and drove down past Matlock-on-sea to Ambergate, near Derby, to check out some of the semi-unofficial tracks in Shining Cliff Woods.
It seems the tracks have been there a few years and are generally tolerated, with most tracks towards the far end of woods. The first track we directed to was quite good with lots embedded rocks and tight steep sections making it very technical with a flatter fun section towards the bottom. With the heat and humidity it was a sweaty push to the top and we only did a few runs of that track. I got the only pictures of the day there, which I think came out quite well considering they were from one run and I sometimes need to shoot loads of runs to get what I want.
Further across the hill, beyond the footpath, there are more tracks starting from a small hill. There were many lines coming off the start point taking you into a small maze of rocky turns that led to two tracks. One was flatter with jumps and fun corners to slide into due the water still lingering on the track. The other went left and more steeply down the hill with some reasonable sized drops and big technical rock garden. I spent many attempts on this giant pedal and bash ring sander, eventually completing a run on the line I was aiming for, well more or less. For some reason when it came to ride back to the car my front middle ring was bent, hmmm. 😕
You can find more info on Ambergate and directions on Gravity Slaves, here.
So as the weather was great me and Jeff headed out for a couple of yours ride in the evening, as it would have been too hot and really busy with walkers during the day. But even at this time it was still roasting, with some people using the great weather to top up their tan at the top of Hagg Tor. With it being almost bone dry I was really enjoying myself putting in many runs of the top section of Hagg Tor, even trying the inside line 😉 in the lower woods!
After we had got enough shoots we headed over towards Gores to get some more there. In stark contrast to Hagg Tor the upper sections of Gores were much muddier looked like a 4×4 had been up there. Stopping over half way down to unblock a drainage gully. We did a couple of shoots on Gores but I don’t personally think it has the same level of interest as Hagg Tor. A couple more turns would make it alot more interesting. Which starting us thinking how good It would be if we had a transporter, which meant you could do a full run down Gores and then get transported to the top of Hagg Tor 🙂 One for the future maybe. Other highlights of ride must have been Jeff using a branch to hold his chain rings and bash guard to cranks. After completely destroying them at Ambergate isn’t it amazing how the Caveman comes out when required.
Right in some exciting news Jeff has bought himself and new HD Video Camera, so videos from now on will be in much better quality. So a couple of weeks ago myself, Jeff, Josh, Nicky, and Jonny headed out to test it out. It had been a while since we had all been out riding together and was probably going to be the last time in a while. But the weather turn out to be alight, just a bit on the windy side!
Hope X was the first port of call. I was surprised how dry it was so we all pushed up for the first run of the day, down the main straight. Which I really enjoyed on the new bike. Although Nicky was having lots of problems with his Gears skipping due to a worn out drive train. But we came up with a longer run in so he could get enough speed to make things interesting.
First ride in my new troy lee gear, got a bit of stick off everyone about it 🙂 I decided that it was time to get some popper all weather riding gear so I went for the Grand Prix air Jersey and Pants. After some trial and error Nicky got his gears to work, but only in granny ring which I thought was quite ironic! As I think doing to the coast to coast might have worn them out. Half way up Hagg Tor we stopped off for a break from pushing and had a look around for some different lines to hit. We all spotted a gap/drop just off to the side of the main bridleway, it is something I had looked at before but was put off by the line. This didn’t seam to put Jonny off, saying “I don’t see how it’s actually possible to mess this up”, watch the video to see what happened…
Hagg Tor was good as always, but a little less wind would have been nice! Josh and I did a couple of fun runs down the upper sections while Jonny and Nicky messed around further up. Jonny was his normal creative self finding different lines to ride and mess around on. That boy’s got skills, unfortunately Jeff missed Jonny’s other crash of the day. So I will try to describe it to you instead; after an impressive huck down the near vertical bank on Hagg Tor, Jonny then went flying off the small jump/drop in the run-out, but due to the wind the back of his bike was blown out from underneath him. It almost looked like he was doing a tail whip and he landed with his hands still on the handle bars but the rest of his body completely separated from the rest of his bike. An impressive crash!
Jeff didn’t take his stills camera, guess he expected to be having too much fun with his new video camera. So the only pictures we have are ones that he took on the video camera, but I think the video makes up for it!
We’ve uploaded the video in HD (1280×720) onto Vimeo. You can watch it in full resolution by clicking Vimeo to view it in the Vimeo page then toggle HD on and go into Full Screen.
So back in mid September, James, Matt A and myself (Jeff) went for a ride of the EPIC loop. Heading up through Aston we did a bit of drain maintenance, unblocking the hole under the wall which was causing the steam to run down the path again, building on the previous work of a group known as Ride The Peak.
After lunch at top of the woods on HopeX DH we did one continuous run down which we all enjoyed. We pushed up the other side complaining about the dangerous and boring new surface that has been put down on the section up to the Snake, as a result of work on the bridge.
Sessioning Hagg Tor was great fun, we did about 3 runs each of the top section and got some nice pics. A slightly new line has appeared on the second to last corner on the top section, cutting back left just after the corner gives a faster line and better angle onto the next corner with the dropping tree that covers the exit.
Next we headed onto Gores DH, where we all set off from the usual spot, Irwin leading, and me sneaking out in front of Matt. I was doing well, good speed, clearing a few short rock downslopes with a slight hop, slightly manualling the two stream before the forest. I then tried to pull up off the lip of a piece of wood buried in the track, I landed in a slight dip and was forced towards the front of the bike, off balance, going fast and expecting to go down I braked, which was possibly my downfall… literally. I went down to the left, landing on my side and sliding along the bank and track. A quick check, nothing broken, my arm and leg pads doing a good job, my initial injuries being grazing on my hip and elbow and my left lower leg muscle was stiff, I think it must have taken a hit while tensed. This made getting to the bottom of the track ‘interesting’. We called off going up Grindle Clough to Whinstone Lee Tor and just headed home, which was quite painful on the uphill sections. I was walking with a limp for a week and not fully recover for two weeks, still at least it wasn’t a long term injury.
So last Saturday (16th Feb) we headed out for an afternoon ride at Hagg Tor, with the bright afternoon sun beaming down on us it felt like spring might have at last arrived. There were five of us in all; Pete, Tim (Pete’s mate, not his brother), Matt, Jeff and myself (James). It was nice to see we were not the only ones out riding a group of about 20 XC riders came down, which is always funny to watch. Although the sun was great for pictures some parts of the bridleway were still frozen from the night before which made things a bit more interesting! This was the first time that Matt and Tim had been down Hagg Tor so me and Pete showed them the lines. Nevertheless, in no time they were both riding it as if they had ridden it many times before. However, they quickly discovered that Hagg Tor is one of those things tracks that you get 100% either right or have a horrible run down. The key to getting down quickly is to get the top section smooth and carry your speed onto the lower sections. This isn’t as easy as you might first think, especially when the ground is frozen 🙂 . In terms of a short downhill Hagg Tor has a lot to offer, natural berms, slow and fast corners, loads of rocks and one of my favourite things being a nice wide track. With space to overtake! This gives you loads of different lines to pick between with every rider taking a slightly different one.
As the afternoon progressed on Jeff got the video camera out and did some filming, expect to see that some time in the future. It was nice to ride with a different group of people and watching how everyone rode the same section. Tim uses his height and strength to man handle the bike around corners, and considering he has not been riding much on his new full suss he was going quickly. Compared to Matt with his BMX background providing the basis of his mtb skills again he does not hang around, it is hard to tell that he has only recently started riding mountain bikes. As the cars were parked down on the A57 Snake Pass we finished the ride off with a blast down Hagg Tor from top to bottom, this is not something that I have done many times before as we normally ride a loop that goes up Hagg Tor and session it as we push up. From top to bottom, it isn’t a bad run, although the gate half way down does spoil it slightly. Well at least it isn’t my turn to stop and hold the gate open next time!
After we got back to Bamford some of us headed down to the pump track to try riding it during the day. I got my new (second hand) BMX off Matt and fitted a bit of metal though the bottom bracket so that I had something to stand on. As I not yet have any cranks, brakes or pedals for it. The pump track is really coming along well and will soon be ready for summer. Thanks to everyone who had been down there and dug some more rollers and jumps it will be worth all the effort once the ground gets a little harder. ShaFF will soon be upon us (Feb 29th to 2nd of March) so make sure every gets down there to see Monkeyspoon on the big screen along with many other great mountain biking and extreme sports videos.