RSF - The Off Road Cycling Club

The Adventure Starts Here


Anybody who rides a bicycle is a friend of mine - Gary Fisher


All content in the journals is copyright either of the RSF or the author or indeed both. It's use without permission will result in a stiff memo. If you would like to use an article or images please contact the general secretary in the first instance

2000 Jan-Feb Vol 45 No.1

I have come over Nan Bield. From here the valley is enclosed by fine crags; locked up, it seems, beyond access. But there is a way, and I have come that way. My way was by new and lovely country through Orton to Shap, and a devilish hard way it was. But life is that way and mostly not nearly so pleasant as that tail of a road to Shap. These hard mountain roads knock hunger into you, and if you are without food they take your knee-strength away and leave you gasping inches where you would have strode yards before, but you learn a lot; you come up again like a cork in a storm and get yourself beached alright.

2000 March-April Vol 45 No.2

On entering Aberfoyle, I looked at my never-right watch to assume that I was only half-an-hour down on schedule for the 10 a.m. rendezvous with Callander John. An excited John demanded an explanation for my late arrival on this pleasant September Sunday. Telling him a sad tale of a puncture and of weary legs after a mid-week sprint from Paris to Brest and back seemed to do the pacifying trick. The real reason, whisper, whisper, was because we have a new and, for the first time, a good-looking addition to the Berwick household—Whisky, the kitten. The task of feeding the wee devil rested on my broad masculine shoulders (take a bow, George), as Elsie was away spending a week-end in her country cave on Arran.

2000 May-June Vol 45 No.3

On the western shore of Derwentwater is a lovely range of little mountains called Cat Bells. On the narrow grassy summit of these hills is one of the most famous ridge walks in England. Its popularity is mainly from the splendid views looking northwards towards Skiddaw and equally good views down to Derwentwater on the east and to Causey Pike to the west. The valley between Cat Bells and Causey Pike is the Newlands Valley and, although it is only a few miles from Keswick with its hordes of summer visitors, Newlands provides a quiet playground, even at peak holiday periods, for the rough-stuff cyclist.

2000 July-Aug Vol 45 No.4

For us, it was to be a holiday with a difference. The overnight drive to Scotland now abandoned for a more leisurely arrival. The tent and camping gear also left for a recently acquired Motorhome. It was inevitable that nostalgia would prevail throughout. We drove past Loch Lochy YH, still the same cobbled forecourt, how many times had we parked cars there whilst setting out for tours; all now fondly remembered. At the time though some had been marathon efforts, usually the result of my appalling navigating errors. How lucky we had been on several occasions for the wilds of Scotland is not the place to make errors with the map.

2000 Sept-Oct Vol 45 No.5

A farmyard is hardly an ideal campsite, but when a farmyard is the only available place other considerations must go overboard. It so happened during the wetter part of September 1930 that I found myself wandering around Castletown, Isle of Man, at 11 p.m. A farmer’s boy took me home with him and gave me the alternative of a large field containing a fully grown bull, or the farmyard which was detached from the farmhouse and surrounded on three sides by the field; the road and shippons covering the fourth side. I dislike bulls so I chose the farmyard, found a spot that boasted a patch of grass amongst the cobbles, and there set up my outfit.

2000 Nov-Dec Vol 45 No.6 (Index)

That is Joe - *a nice unparticular man’. Cycle-campers are unparticular as a rule, because they have to be. All their outfit must be carried on the machine they push by their own power, and weight tells on a long ride. In any case real camping is not a sinecure. Blackberry Joe as a cyclist diets for fitness, as a camper he gormandises for pleasure. I have known him to spend three hours cooking supper on his stove, potatoes, onions, gravy, carrots and turnips and anything else that will go into the pan does go in and is boiled up with the rest

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