Thursday, 3 January 2013

2013 “Bring it ON!”

The Wandering Walton’s would like to wish each and every reader a prosperous and healthy New Year, may 2013 bring you all the joy and happiness you deserve out on the road.

Now “Bring it on!”

A quick walk-around video
Sexy Beast's

With 2012 well and truly behind us, the decorations taken down and packed away for another year. A quick once over of the house top to bottom re-arranging cupboard contents, cleaning, hoovering or should I now say “Dyson-ing!”  I ‘m now mentally ready to put finger to keyboard to share with you our riding agenda for 2013.

Now I purposefully have not added our names, I say our as either Jeannie or Ben will undoubted be joining me in numerous new adventures, plus for some reason this years planned rides all seem to involve other people. How brilliant is that, I’m actually “planning” to ride with fellow bikers for the first year ever.

Yesterday I applied the country flag stickers to Mr T’s Metal Mule Panniers in what turned out to be quite a nice “mosaic” pattern.  I used to have a row of stickers on the FJR panniers and they always got quite a bit of interest at Squires and were the starting point of some very interesting conversations.  There not everyone’s “cup of tea” but I like them. Ben did really well trying to name all the nations flags and only got a little confused with one or two.

"The Beast" Looking Resplendent at the
Lithuanian Boarder back in 2010

Looking Good! Now can you name
ALL the flags!
Answers below....

So what do we have planned so far? Well it all kicks off nice and soon with me already having spent a few hours on my beloved MapSource package plotting a tour with a difference of Derbyshire. The involves seeing my home county from a slightly different prospective that being “through Raymond’s eyes!”

Using predominantly back and single track roads throughout the county including two sections of unpaved roads. One section of unpaved road is just behind my old village of Temple Normanton’s through Sutton Wood and is predominantly gravel and small boulders with a little rutted pathway that connects  it to Sutton Hall. The tour is something I promised the Manc Riders I would do last year but the planned ride date was “gazumped” by LBK’s Welsh White Water Rafting day.

Still the guys are all keen to try again and as a number of them have gone “ex-military bike buying” and want to try out there new machinery it should make for a very interesting day. Taking in some well know locations like Matlock Bath, Buxton, Bakewell, Monyash, The Faybrick, Hardstoft, not forgetting Sutton Wood! The route will also include rideby’s of Sutton Hall, Hardwick Hall, Haddon Hall, Chatsworth House, Monyash Valley view to name but a few. Mid-morning  “brew & a buttie” will be at my favourite bike café/shop  CMC Motorcycles in Clay Cross, followed by lunch either in Matlock Bath or on the outskirts of  Buxton at a very secluded pub I know.

Touring Derbyshire, Raymondo Style!

I have had a bit of interest from @niksixoo and @teapotone on Twitter who are both keen to visit Derbyshire but fancy something a little off the tourist track. I know the locations visited are all land marks and main stay visitor attractions but it’s how you get there that will be 80% virgin territory to most.

16th January  - will see me in Bonds Main for the 11th year with flowers in hand. “I Love & miss you so much Mum.”

17th January - Lefty, LBK & one other TBC will be in Blackburn Empire Theatre at the Foggy & Whit, "Giving it Gas Show."  I for one cannot wait!

19th January – It’s the Third Annual IBA UK January RTE to be held at John & Sonia’s. I've not put my name down but Ben & I will undoubtedly be drawn to the excitement, involuntarily.

27th January – The  Manc Riders, also, Third Annual RTE will take place at the Moorcock Inn near Littleborough. Something I’m proud to say I have arranged each year since joining the Manc Riders. (Sadly I’m unable to put up a link to the site as we are suffering administration difficulties at the moment but normal service will be resumed imminently).

So that rounds of a cracking start to 2013 in January.

February, March and April at the minute are all FREE! Shock horror. Still with the onset of May it all starts to get really interesting.

10th April  -   Sees Jeannie & I going to see Mrs Browns Boys at Manchester Arena.

24th – 26th  May -  The IBA UK Britt Butt Rally takes place. As highest placed “Rookey” last year I’m giving it a miss this year but I do believe entries are still being take just take a look at 2013 Britt ButtRally

30th May – 4th June  - Horizon’s Unlimited Travellers Meeting (HUBBUK) being held at the all new location near Donnington at the Donnington Farmhouse Hotel.  I’m booked in again for the whole 4 days but it looks as if the family Walton holiday could wreak havoc!  Only time will tell.

Be there or be square!

7th June – It’s off to Manchester to see Eddie Izzard with Jeannie. Now that will be a blast as Eddie is simply amazing “In my mind, in my mind."

21st – 23rd June –See’s Ben and I participating in the RBLR1000 (Royal British Legion Riders 1000 miles ride). Having ridden it twice, worked on it once this year I will be riding the 1000 miles in under 24 hours with Ben my 11 year old son as pillion. If successful, Ben will become the “Youngest EVER Pillion” to have completed the ride undercutting the current record by an amazing 5 years (to the best of my knowledge but I’m sure Paddy will let me know if I’m miss quoting here, won’t you Paddy!?)

As this is a sponsored ride in aid of the Royal British Legion, we have set up a Just Giving Page.
Ben & I would like to raise £500 towards for our chosen charity and would really appreciate it if you would drop by and make a donation please. “Well if you can’t plug your own fundraising on your own Blog where on earth can you?”

5th – 14th July – It’s adventure time! Bruce and I are off to NordKapp or North Cape as it’s said in English. Taking a leisurely crossing from Hull over to Rotterdam on Friday night we will then head up through the Netherlands, passing through the north of Germany into Denmark. Heading further north we will pass through Sweden and follow the Atlantic Coast Road up the West coast of Norway all the way into the Arctic circle to NordKapp.  “On the return trip I would like to call into Finland Bruce.”  All of which will enable me to add a further 3 flags to my panniers, “You see there’s method in my madness” LOL.

August is a free month, as it stands that is,  thus enabling me to ensure Mr T is full serviced and set up for a rather interesting end to September.

27th – 29th September – Roland & I will be taking part in the IBA Germany European Road Runner Rally,  a 36 hour touring event set across the whole of Germany & Austria. Roland competed in the event last year and so I will be looking to him for guidance and inspiration.

However, “there always seems to be an however with me, strange that!” The German Butt Rally is just a prelude to what we have planned for the following week.

30th September – 5th October – Ron & Ray Ride Again! We’re off down towards Greece (Flag Collecting Again) taking in some of the most stunningly beautiful Eastern European countries as we feel happy to visit. These will, I’m hoping, include Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary, Romania, Bulgaria, Greece, on the way south. Macedonia, Albania, Kosovo, Montenegro, Serbia, Croatia and Slovania heading back home. Followed by a quick dash for the  Channel Tunnel through Austria, Germany and France. Thus adding another 13 more flags to my panniers. “Now do you see why I went for such small flags?”

And that folk’s is the plan to date!

There’s a Biker Café I want to visit up in Stockton on Tees called the Pit Stop which is 103 miles from our house making it a nice mooching distance. Their first meeting is on Tuesday the 8th January from 5.00pm till 9.00pm Full details can be found on my latest find of brilliant biker sites called so take a look there may well be something happening in your area too.

I do have a couple of interesting propositions to discuss with other riders which include a Round Britain Coastal Ride with Oggy, “just a small mater of 3500 miles so no worries there then is there Oggy?

Plus I’m still struggling to tie up dates with my dear friend Thomas over in Germany who would dearly love to ride the IBA UK End to End Gold, 1050 miles from Land’s End to John O’Groats via London in under 24 hours. As I've already done this ride on three separate occasions in 2010 it would be nice to do it on Mr T but hey who knows what else 2013 will have in store of the illustrious Wandering Walton’s.

Farewell 2012 
Welcome to 2013

Have a brilliant 2013 and if you spot us out and about please just say hello but be ready to talk about bikes, A LOT! 

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