Through the Peak District to the Isle of Man – Motorcycle journals

Late last year one of our friends asked us if we wanted to go with him and see the Isle of Man TT races. For those of you in the unknown about what the TT races are, you can check out the Wiki. In short, it is a 37.73 mile Mountain course on this small country in the Irish sea that is a must see for any motorcycle fan. There is no race track, the races are done on the island roads which are, of course, closed for everyone else during the race. The tickets for the ferry get sold out the year before, as soon as that year’s races are over so you really need to plan ahead. Lucky for us, our friend had a couple of spare tickets due to some cancellations so he kindly offered us first dibs. Needless to say, we jumped on the offer and started the TT race countdown ❤

A couple of months before the TT we found out that the husband’s bike club would be having their annual BBQ the weekend before, the last bank holiday weekend in May. This was shaping up to be a pretty decent biker holiday. As we had about two days free between the BBQ and Isle of Man, we decided to split the trip from Gloucestershire (BBQ) to Heysham from where we had to catch our ferry across to the Manx territory. And what was half way? The beautiful Peak District.

We set off from the bank of river Severn by Tawkesbury late Monday morning after breakfast and saying bye to the rest of the club. We took the M5 towards Wolverhampton where we continued on the M6 and then peeled off to A513 to Ashbourne. From there the A515 took us through the heart of Peak district. The sun was shinning but the clouds were gathering quickly. This, however, still had not diminished the rolling hill landscape that extended before us. Just as we were about 15 mins from Miller’s Dale (hostel spot) the sky opened up and decided to treat us to some hale. We rode through the bloody thing for about 10 minutes!!! It felt like constantly being pelted with pebbles. Just as we got to our hostel, the rain stopped and the sun poked out through the clouds. In a matter of 5 minutes the sky almost completely cleared out.

Peak District

The plan was to change into dry clothes and take the bike for a ride to a close by village to grab some dinner. As my hips were quite stiff and painful from a cold night’s sleep in the tent, once I got off the bike, I actually could not get back on so we went for a nature walk. We walked through Tideswell Dale; it was so peaceful and quiet at 5 in the afternoon that we heard the woodpeckers and other birds as if they were a meter away from us. The rain this year really left its impact as all of it was so green and heavy with moisture. Droplets of rain were glistening on the leaves and flowers were heavy with the water in their cups. We made our way to Litton were we stopped at a pub and had some food. Looking at the prices, you’d think we were in central London! Between you and me, the food was not that good. Two onion rings and I felt feel like I’ve eaten a brick! I had known Peak District was pricey, but this was a pub in the middle of a tiny village people probably never even heard off (not including people who live in the District).

Road to Morecambe

Our goal for Tuesday was reaching Morecambe where we were staying for the night before getting our ferry early next morning from nearby Heysham. It was a nice two and a half hour long ride + any stops we might need. Before completely leaving Peak District, we decided to stop in Millers Dale right next to our hostel and in Buxton to visit the Poole’s Cavern. The Miller’s Dale is a teeny tiny village that has the one road going through it. The houses here are every Instagrammers dream and there is the river Wyn going through it. However, what took the spotlight for me was the Monsal Trail which goes over the road and gives a spectacular photo opportunity. Just look at the photos of this wonderful little place!

Next stop was the Poole’s Cavern in Buxton where we arrived around about 11ish. We also wanted to do the walk up to Solomon’s temple but did not have the time. If we stayed and did that one as well, we would have arrived at Morecambe around 8 in the evening earliest. At the cavern’s parking lot the husband spotted a petrol leak. Of course he did; we were travelling on the bike and there always has to be something wrong on the road. Luckily it was fixed in about 10 minutes, it gave me just enough time to take photos of some fluffy sheep lazily grazing in the field. The cavern itself was actually quite interesting with all the history connected to it and the funky look of some of the stalactites and stalagmites. However, if you are on a schedule and have other things to see/do, I would not be too bothered about it. Leaving the cavern, I noticed that my bike boot sole has split; any water I stepped on would go straight into my shoe soaking my foot -.- This will be the bane of the trip. I “fixed” it on the spot with some electric tape but that only survived until the campsite on the Isle of Man.

The trip to Morecambe was quite uneventful apart from constant race with the massive, heavy rain clouds threatening to overtake us and soak us to the bone. At one point, just as we were about 5 miles from Morecambe, to our right we had the big, grey clouds looking like they will split open any second and to our left was a clear blue sky with blazing sunshine. My only thought at that moment was “please turn left, please turn left”. Luckily the sun and clear skies were on the coast so when we arrived to our hotel, it was absolutely beautiful outside. Once we cleaned the road of us, we went out to the seafront which was right across the road. It was bloody windy though, completely tangled my hair and I ended up having to tie it back in order to avoid ripping half of it off when I pulled the brush through it later. We haven’t seen much of the actual town, we stuck to the seafront and the jetty and then ended up meeting with our friend and his gang of bikers, our company for the next week.

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