White Chalk Hills UCX Reconnaissance Ride

What we learnt from this little escapade:

  • The route is FANTASTIC.
  • The views are INCREDIBLE.
  • 45 miles on up and down terrain is incredibly hard work but ultimately rewarding.
  • The bridleway that heads north west from South Heighton is IMPOSSIBLE to ride – you will need to get off and run with your bike.
  • You might go a bit off course if you don’t concentrate.
  • The beer and food at the Ram Inn, Firle is great (a recommended pit stop if you need it).
  •  Bits on bikes brake – we suffered a catastrophic mechanical which meant we had to botch a single speed out of the wreckage to get home.  We’ll be back another day to recon’ the last 20 kilometres.

Tips:

  • Familiarise yourself with the route – if you have an OS Map bring it with you, otherwise try and follow someone who knows what they are doing or has a map – there’s a link to the route below but if you email mark@velomorpha.cc then I will send you a GPX file.  There are no arrows or way markings, this isn’t a sportive, but each of the trig points should help to keep you on track.
  • Be prepared for really cold weather or rain and layer up – on our reconnaissance ride the temperature was below freezing for most of the morning…it is December.
  • Bring plenty of food, water and any energy products of your personal preference to get yourself round the course.
  • Bring tools and spares to keep keep yourself mobile (a spare rear mech hanger might be a good idea for starters)
  • Be aware there is no vehicle support and you are on your own…there’s a train station at Glynde and another at Berwick on the northern end of the route and Seaford, Bishopstone and Newhaven at the southern end should you need an alternative to get home.
  • This is UltraCross, you will need to get off and run with your bike over some parts of the route.
  • Look out for each other.
  • Say hello to everyone and anyone you meet, it’ll make the experience really rather pleasurable.
  • Belgian Beer tastes sweeter after you have worked for it.

See you on the 30th December!

Bike Route Toaster – White Chalk Hills UCX Route

Here’s some photographs from our reconnaissance ride:

Further Works:

Devil Take Hindmost – A Beginners Guide to Ultracross