Bob Skoot had acquired a rather nice blue BMW R1200R and despite concerns about transmission failure had undertaken an impressive transcontinental journey. I asked him in January 2014 how he had found the bike - he replied "My BMW R1200R is a rocket on the freeway when you need to cover many miles. Instant power anytime, and also instant brakes should you need to slow down, plus it's smaller and lighter than my Vstrom. I like the shaft drive vs Chain maintenance but it has a smaller fuel tank. My Vstrom can go much farther on a tank with 23L vs only 17L for my Beemer. That equates to 100 kms less per tank
I bought the Beemer for this trip. It also has Traction Control and Tire Pressure Senors so I though much safer for a long ride like this
Cup cakes were very good. I wouldn't mind some more, right about now . . ."
It was therefore fortuitous that ScooterBob's short time with me coincided with the Annual general meeting of the BMW Club of United Kingdom and Ireland (this being the officially approved motorcycle club) and this year the meeting would be held in Harrogate Yorkshire (some 100 miles over the other side of the Pennine mountain chain from Knutsford, Cheshire where I live).
I normally attend this event as my first bike tour of the year and it enables me to visit new places and meet friends whilst winding up club luddites who resist "social media". There is normally a fun event organised - last year we visted the Metisse factory------> STORY HERE.
|The journey in best British racing track tradition (northern hemisphere) was a clockwise route starting bottom left at Knutsford|
I decided to take an initially north westerly route to Blackburn and cross the Pennines near Skipton thus avoiding the Friday afternoon drag through the northern powerhouse of Manchester to Leeds. Anyhow it's always a thrill to cross the Thelwall viaduct over the Manchester Ship canal on a motorcycle in strong wind. To get back into the swing of UK motoring on densely packed motorways and twisty hill roads with straying sheep I planned this modest 200 mile mixed road circular route.
|The off - Luckily I had fitted the beak extender to my BMW R1200GS and you can see the remains of last year's flies too.|
|No journey in England is complete without a stop at a Little Chef especially for those with bursting bladders. I made it to Skipton OK.|
|Job done and afternoon tea ordered - a far flung experience from the Olympic breakfast noramlly served.|
|The proverbial selfie during the digestion of a stale scone...|
|Somewhere on the moors 19 miles from Harrogate there is a chance of an ice cream just as the Tomtom blew up|
|Further along the A59 I come to the aid of a group of cheery scooterists from Wigan - when I see the magneto in pieces I wish them well on their continuing journey to Newcastle...|
|ScooterBob does some bonding with Pricey 46 and that is one hell of a starting lever!|
|We arrive at the Cairn Hotel in Harrogate and the sun shines - the sun always seems to shine on the east of the Pennines in contrast to where I live on the west!|
|The club is disorganised on a regional basis, and this time it's the Yorkshire section hoisting the banner.|
|Last year the Tour de France cycle race came to Yorkshire as this hewn out rotten tree trunk depicts in Harrogates's beautiful Montpellier Quarter.|
|The daffodils are blooming marvellous(ly)!|
|Later that evening we inbibe at the Wintergardens which is now a Wetherspoons pub - local lass and attentive barperson Meata Baciukiewicz serves us a guest ale (can't recall what it was)|
|Even later that evening and miraculously back at the hotel, club president Mike poses with Scooterbob.|
|Mrs Mike and Cynthia (of round the world on an R80 GS fame ---> READ IT HERE) fight over ScooterBob)|
|Following the rather boring procedings of the AGM, Leeds man Noel Whittall gave a presentation of his various adventures ridng a 1918 Triumph H. See brief video-----> here|
|BobSkoot poses next to the superior to Lucas Bosch generator and I rush him away before an oil drip falls.|
|Bob from Belfast bought Tubby Balls formerly and briefly my BMW K (thank you Richard M) 75 - the electric screen still worked until recently|
|On the way home, following a drag of a journey through grim towns we hit the Peak District National Park south of Huddersfield on route to Buxton. Passing through Holmfirth I remember the TV series "Last of the Summer Wine".|
|The guys in the van had been flying model aircraft off the hills up to the point we arrived - they then brewed up in the caravan due to the sub zero wind chill!|
|Here we are nearly home at the Cat and Fiddle Inn - BobSkoot enjoyed my flowing cornering lines on the ubiquitous "most dangerous road" in England------>see here|
This was great weekend and I can say that carrying BobSkoot with me enhanced the social interaction considerably!
In the next episode we ride Penny Farthing cycles!