News feed, 26.6.17

Our 2017 ABC ride was another triumph for sunny weather, happy riders and our amazing Road Crew. We met at Albemarle Barracks, home to the British Army, and then zoomed off to Alnwick, via the A68, Elsdon and Rothbury.

Everyone’s in the NAAFI …

We had a brief stop for lunch, before heading east via Denwick to Boulmer, home to the Royal Air Force. It was a breezy stop, so once we’d had our picture taken, we strapped ourselves in again, and rode off south towards Ashington and Newcastle upon Tyne.

Today is obviously checky-shirt day!

You can never have too many pictures!

Our new Sportster Sickness ladies: Caroline, Sharon and Sarah

Cross Rob is flying the flags!

We re-grouped a couple of times, so we could make the final push along the quayside in a single group. The traffic lights thwarted us slightly but our Men in Orange did a great job in keeping us all together and in the right direction. Finally, we landed at HMS Calliope, home to the Royal Naval Reserve.

We had a stupendous day, with about one hundred riders and pillions, eighty bikes and trikes and a sea of smiley faces! We managed to raise about £750.00 for our armed forces. Well done to everyone!

What a great day!


If you would like to contribute news or photos for our website, email us: GeordieHOG News

 

News feed, 14.6.17

Well, that was The Gathering 2017! We had a great time, met some great people and travelled through some spectacular scenery in and around Argyll and Bute.

We fuelled and packed the trike the night before, ready for an early start on Friday. We got away about nine, with the promise of some light rain somewhere on our journey. We went along the A69 and up the M74. After a brief coffee stop at Abington, we encountered more and more dark skies, and then the rain started after junction 8 as we headed for Kilmarnock. Thankfully things eased off slightly as we hit the coast, turning right at Ardrossan, heading for McInroy’s Point through West Kilbride and Inverkip.

The Firth of Clyde is a huge expanse of water, leading into the North Channel and the Irish Sea, but we couldn’t see much of it, with the ever-present mist and clouds. We landed at the ferry terminal about five hours after setting off, which was a good time given the conditions, and we endured a further drenching as we took up our place on the ferry.

Hunter’s Quay is only a short step from the ferry and after a chat with the Clyde Valley welcome team, we made our way to our lodge. We saw lots of bikes and trikes in the car park and Clyde Valley had decorated everything in the black-and-orange. A very welcoming sight! We then saw loads of Harley-Davidsons parked outside the lodges and caravans.

Thankfully, the weather cheered up and we went over to the bar and grill about seven. Clyde Valley and Dunedin were in abundance and we saw people from Red Rose, Belfast and Oslo chapters too. To keep us entertained, The Kilts played a cheerful set of cover songs and we slurped a few beers into the night. Somehow, we managed to get the cover on the trike later …

The rain started about eleven o’clock that night and kept going for twelve hours solid. A complete wash-out, and Clyde Valley wisely cancelled the Saturday ride-out. We managed to stay away from the bar during the day, with a promise of some sunshine later. It landed about three, so we saddled up, plotting a course for Strachur through some beautiful scenery on the B836 and the A886. We travelled on a range of roads, and some of the single track ones were challenging in places. They were still very wet, with lots of puddles and standing water.

We travelled past Holy Loch, Loch Tarsen, Loch Striven, Loch Fyne and Loch Eck, on a seventy-five mile trip. When we landed back at Dunoon, we took a right-hand turn towards Toward lighthouse, the southernmost point. The day was basking in sunshine by this time and we had an ice-cream on the outskirts of Dunoon before we headed back, very pleased that the rain stopped and smiling about our wee trip.

Bessie and The Zinc Buckets played a rousing set that evening in the bar and grill, and we watched them, listened to Stephen’s speech and won nothing in the raffle. Unsurprisingly, Dunedin won the highest attending chapter.

The rain started again later that evening but the promise was for a brighter morning, with the rain setting in about one in the afternoon. So we saddled up early and headed for Inverary, with a straight run up and down the side of Loch Eck. Inverary is beautiful, with lots of whitewashed buildings. We had a cup of coffee, bought some shortbread and decided to go to Lochgoilhead, to see our sixth loch. We struck off for Arrochar on the A83, round the majestic Beinn an Lochain. It’s a great climb up to the Rest and Be Thankful, but the mist spoilt our view.

On the B828, we navigated more single-track roads as we dropped into Lochgoilhead. On a dry day, it would have been a great trip, but the rain started again just as we pulled in to the tiny village. We took a different route back, climbing out of the valley towards Ardno.

We met quite a few single riders on our hundred mile trip, then we encountered the official ride-out, with about twenty five bikes, including Road Crew. We landed back to Hunter’s Quay about one o’clock, just as we’d planned.

Monday promised even more rain, so we set off early back to Newcastle. We took a different route after Kilmarnock, on the A76 to Dumfries, then the A75 to Gretna Green.

We had a great time with Clyde Valley chapter! The rally site sits within some amazing landscapes next to some superb riding roads, and we managed to visit six of the seven local lochs. Next time, we’ll try and do it with a bit less rain!


If you would like to contribute news or photos for our website, email us: GeordieHOG News

 

Chapter Meeting, June 2017

Barry and Peter were away in Ireland at BikeFest, so Robin was in charge at our June meeting. It was a great evening, weather-wise, and we had about thirty or so bikes and trikes in the car park, and eighty Chapter members in the room.

Here’s a few highlights from the meeting:

  • Our first Chapter ride of 2017 was a great success, led by Duncan
  • We’ve had a few rallies already in 2017, with a good number travelling down to Cider and Iron Horse
  • The Normans convened their second Fat Bob event in The Lakes recently, which was another great success (although it did rain a bit!)

We’ve got a couple of events coming up in the coming weeks, starting with the next monthly Chapter ride to Eskdalemuir, led by Ray and Paul.

Helen handed out event sheets for everyone. Helen will update this as we go forward. We’ve got full details on the website too: www.geordiehog.com/events. The Bad-Landers Armed Forces Day event is on 18 June, and full details are on the website. We’ve also got our own ABC ride on 24 June.

At the end of June, there’s the Chapter Ride Weekend at Clennell Hall. There’s plenty of space left in the bunk rooms, or you can camp. Speak to Helen or Peter if you’d like to go.

Ray thanked everyone who attended the recent photo-shoot at the Angel of the North, with the North East Coalition of Motorcycle Clubs. We had about forty people there, a sizeable proportion of the overall one hundred and ninety who attended. Pictures are available on Facebook.

Dawn said that the rally organisation is going really well and encouraging everyone to help. Ticket sales are going well too!

We finished on a sad note, noting the recent death of a Kalle Johnsen from the Bergen Chapter. Trish arranged for some flowers from us all, at his funeral on Wednesday.

The raffle is always a flourish at the end with Steve, John, Jan, Ian, Bill and Ben all collecting some great prizes.

The next meeting is on 6 July, see you all there!

Ride safe everyone, Robin.

News feed, 29.5.17

The warm summer sun shone down on Ray and I as we revved up the trikes, making our way down to Angels Place for the North East Coalition of Motorcycle Clubs’ meeting last Friday. Many others had taken also had the same idea, lining the street outside the pub with their beautiful bikes. Clutching a glass of the amber nectar, we stayed outside for some chat with our coalition friends. It’s a great way to start the meeting.

Steve got the meeting underway and there were a few absentees this month. Firstly, he thanked everyone for coming down to the NECMC photo shoot at the Angel of the North on Wednesday. It was a great turn-out from everyone in the coalition, with nearly two hundred people there. The HA will get some prints and canvas pictures made for everyone for a reasonable cost. In the meantime, here’s a sneak preview from the picture that made its way onto Facebook.

Everyone then ran through the various events and activities that are coming our way over the summer. We’ve listed some of these in our February write-up, here, but in addition we’ve got the following …

  • 10.6: the HA is hosting a rave at Angels Place, with live bands and DJs keeping everyone entertained
  • 1.7: HAMC Custom Bike Show, with loads of north-east custom bikes on display. Get there for about one o’clock. There are loads of categories for bikes, so get your chrome polished ready for the day.
  • 18.6: the Bad-Landers MCC is convening the annual Armed Forces Day at Bents Park. It’s on between ten and five o’clock and it looks like there’s a stack of things to do, including bands, a bike and car show, and the parade itself. If anyone would like to join the parade from Angels Place to Bents Park, get there for about nine o’clock, ready to ride at quarter to ten. There’s also a raffle with some big money prizes. All in support of our armed forces.
  • 23.7: the Ride of Respect to Catterick. Starts at Angels Place at eleven o’clock. It’ll be busy, so get there early.
  • 5.6: Brigantes Brotherhood MCC is hosting an Open Night
  • 24.6: Geordie HOG ABC ride, starting at Albemarle, up to Boulmer and then to HMS Calliope. You’ll need to have photo ID with you to join this ride.
  • 24.6: the Hylton Hornets MCC is hosting a fund-raiser for the RVI Children’s Wards, 1A and 7, at 12.00 pm. It looks like it will be a great day for the entire family. It’s on at The Golden Lion, South Hylton.

As an aside Bellatorum MCC thanked everyone for their support at the recent event at their place. They raised more than £1,000, bringing their total to nearly £6,500 so far this year.

The next meeting is on 30.6 at 8.00 pm. There are lots of websites and Facebook pages for all these groups, so get online and help support them and the NECMC.


If you would like to contribute news or photos for our website, email us: GeordieHOG News

 

News feed, 25.5.17

We all met up at Bradbury Services on Sunday for the first monthly Chapter ride of 2017, led by Duncan. A few arrived early, having gone straight there, then the Washington posse landed en masse just before ten. It was great to see so many people taking advantage of the good weather, and also so many new chapter members. We chatted to John, Gill and Tony in the car park beforehand.

The Road Crew huddled together to get their game faces on, then Duncan delivered the all-important ride briefing. Barry announced that James would be celebrating his sixtieth birthday on Monday, so we raised our voices for a quick burst of Happy Birthday for him.

Once we’d completed the formalities, everyone got kitted up, started up and ready for the off about half ten. A kindly Stobart’s lorry gave us all a free pass straight out of the service station, then we crossed the A1, heading west up Weardale towards the A68 and Wolsingham. The roads were fantastic and we tucked in behind John B on his Dyna and Ian on his Breakout. Ron and Lyn were close behind us.

The Road Crew got us quickly through the relatively straight route to St John’s Chapel, then a quick left, heading south towards the B167, High Force waterfall and Teesdale. We used part of this route on our first ride from last year when we raced from Alston down to Durham Tees Valley Airport to see the Great North Air Ambulance.

Right onto the B6276 took us onto the North Pennines AONB and the moors. The weather turned distinctly chilly as we soldiered on, and a bit of mist managed to dampen our shiny chrome. Thankfully, the sheep kept out of our way and in no time, we landed at Brough, crossing under the A66. It was a bit bumpy on the roads on the moors and it was good to ride some better roads for a change.

Kirkby Stephen was very busy but everyone stopped and stared, open-mouthed, as we navigated the traffic lights through the village. Up and out again as we headed for Nateby and Outhgill towards Aisgill, next to the very remote Hell Gill Beck. Once on the A684, we landed at the Wensleydale Creamery in Hawes.

Things have changed at the creamery recently, including a new car park. We all managed to find a space, then headed for lunch. It’s such a great place, and Lyn took full advantage of the cheese-related merchandise on offer.

 

We left about an hour or so later and we rode through Hawes itself. It was rammed with tourists and fellow bikers yet we still managed to cause a stir as we went by. There’s something cool about riding in such a big group, and watching everyone watching us! This time, we were following John L, Trish and John B, with Ian tucked in behind. There’s always something entertaining watching John B whacking the throttle grip on his ride, but he kept the hammer down and we made a good pace!

Pretty soon, we dropped down a very steep bank and crossed the lovely Aysgarth Falls. Unfortunately, Kevin Costner was nowhere to be seen! The roads were again magnificent and kept us on our toes, although we nearly ran out of Road Crew at one point. Everyone was doing a good job in letting them through but there were a lot of junctions to cover.

We dropped out of the Yorkshire Dales National Park at Richmond and headed north, crossing the River Tees again, west of the A1 at Darlington. Finally, we had a short stretch of A1 to travel before we landed at Newton Park Services. Everyone was full of smiles for a job well done, all credit to Duncan and the Men in Orange for a superb day!


If you would like to contribute news or photos for our website, email us: GeordieHOG News

 

News feed, 15.4.17

CRAGG 2017

With Clyde Valley and Red Rose chapters, we held our annual pre-season event over at Gretna Hall Hotel. We got underway on 7 April for a couple of nights. Each day had perfect weather, much better than last when we had sleet, rain and snow!

Between us, more than a hundred and fifty turned up to join in the fun. On Saturday, Derek and Rachael Norman arranged a ninety mile blast round some great rural roads of Dumfries and Galloway. We stopped for a lunch break at The Steamboat Inn at Carsethorn: well worth another visit. The ride was just superb, and we arrived back at Gretna mid-afternoon. In the evening, after a superb dinner, a group called Rocket Man entertained us. They were previously on at last year’s Wake the Lakes rally.

CRAGG is a great opportunity for everyone to get together after the long winter’s break! Roll on next year!

Barry


If you would like to contribute news or photos for our website, email us: GeordieHOG News

 

Chapter Meeting, April 2017

Barry welcomed everyone to the April Chapter meeting and handed straight over to Charlotte Campbell. Charlotte gave a short talk about the Children’s Heart Unit Fund (CHUF) and the fantastic work that they do over at the Freeman Hospital. We have a ride-out to the Freeman in July to support CHUF. For more details on CHUF, click here.

Barry then whipped us through a quick commentary of a few events and activities that we convened recently, including two Road Crew-led rides from JH-DG and the First Aid training for our Road Crew. Thanks to James and Allen for the former and Dawn, Greg and Shaun for the latter. These activities are an essential part of getting everyone ready for our forthcoming riding season. Barry also talked us through a few events coming up, starting this weekend …

  • If anyone wants to join a ride over to Gretna on Friday for CRAGG, meet at JH-DG at one o’clock
  • Paul gave us an update on the Easter Egg ride, on 12 April. There’s an egg collection basket at JH-DG, so please contribute if you can.
  • Easter is shaping up nicely with a proposed ride to West Coast H-D on Good Friday (meet at Todhills Services, between J44 and J45 of the M6) – see our Facebook group for times etc.
  • The Normans are convening a ride to The Lakes on 16 April, starting from Hartside Café – see our Facebook group for times etc.
  • Barry also suggested that there might be something else in the mix for Easter Monday too …

Helen handed out event sheets for everyone. It’s a very busy season ahead! Helen will update this as we go forward. We’ve got full details on the website too: www.geordiehog.com/events.

For those not going to CRAGG this weekend, the Sportster Sickness group are getting together at JH-DG. There is also a season-opener at JH-DG, with Bessie and the Zinc Buckets on stage entertaining everyone. There are more details on the JH-DG Facebook page. If anyone has something they’d like to add to the events listings, please contact Helen directly.

Ruth has arranged another Afternoon Tea event at Lumley Castle, with a murder, mystery flavour. It’s on 4 June with a £10 deposit required. There are more details within these hallowed pages and on Facebook. There’s also another Bowling Night planned for 17 June. If you’d like to go to either event, please contact Ruth directly.

The first monthly Chapter Ride is on 21 May, some six weeks away. Duncan will lead it and we’ll learn more at the next Chapter Meeting. James also advised that the recent ride-outs to Blanchland have proved extremely popular with everyone, so the Road Crew might convene another one on 6 May, depending on numbers and Road Crew availability. Keep an eye on our Facebook group for more details.

Mr Stand-In Membership Officer, Peter, said we now have 251 members, with some new members at tonight’s meeting. Hello to everyone! As an aside, it appears that there has been some issues with H.O.G. and membership renewals. We’ll be taking this into account with the membership deadline within Geordie Chapter. If anyone is experiencing any issues, please let Peter know sharpish.

Robin said that the website is fully up-to-date with all the events etc. for the riding season. We’ll add details of start times and locations when they are available. All news, stories and photos gratefully received! We‘re already getting some great coverage of the new items that are on there.

Ray led off with an emotional thank you to everyone who attended the last ride-out for Phil, Lesley’s brother, who passed away recently. They split donations, amounting to some £900, between Cancer Connections, Macmillan and Marie Curie.

There’s a whole host of events going on within the Coalition. Some of these are listed on our website, under News. Some new highlights include:

  • Bellatorum MCC – pool night, Angels Place 29 April
  • Drangonslayer MCC – rally, Percy Park 7 July
  • Twisted Sprockets MCC – rally, 1 September

Dawn said that the rally organisation is going really well and we’ll resolve who’s going to do what, by way of help, at the next Chapter meeting. Hopefully, everyone can lend a hand! Ticket sales are going well too, and Barry encouraged everyone to get theirs soon!

Finally, a couple of last minute items:

  • Rob thanked everyone for the fantastic turn-out to his daughter’s wedding recently, everyone had a great time
  • The Three Horseshoes are offering a 25% discount to Geordie Chapter members and Barry has some vouchers if anyone is interested
  • Some people do still attend the Social Night at The Tyne pub: it’s on the fourth Tuesday in the month, if you’d like to join in
  • There was a stack of prizes in the raffle with Gary F, Judith, John L, Chuck, Greg, John B, Donna and Tony sharing the spoils

The next meeting is on 5 May, see you all there!

Ride safe everyone, Barry.

News feed, 25.3.17

Greg led the way on a great ride-out up to Blanchland, as we basked in some beautiful sunshine on Saturday. Our Road Crew play a very important part in keeping us together on our Chapter ride-outs and they volunteered to help new members understand riding in a group.

We met at Jennings Harley-Davidson Gateshead at half-ten for a comprehensive briefing from James and Greg to get us underway. We had about seven new members with us. We were soon underway along the A1, A69 and A68 to Kiln Pit Hill. There were some great opportunities to experience the staggered riding formation, and watching out for our Road Crew as they marked the junctions for us. Paul, helped by Donna, marked his first junction as a new member of the Road Crew as we turned right, and headed to Blanchland.

The kettle was boiling at the White Monk tearoom, as everyone settled down for refreshments. Others headed over to the Lord Crewe Arms, with its fantastic setting and beautiful grounds.

Suitably refreshed, we headed off again through Shotley Bridge, Medomsley, Burnopfield and Streetgate back towards the A1 and Dunston. We then had a post-ride briefing to round off the event. The pressure is now on Greg to organise similar weather as we head through the 2017 riding season!

See you all at the Haggis Ride next week!


If you would like to contribute news or photos for our website, email us: GeordieHOG News

 

News feed, 16.3.17

Here’s a message from our Head Road Captain, James …

On Saturday, 25.3.17, the Road Crew will convene a ride-out for new members, or members who may want to refresh their group-riding skills.

It will not be a long ride, and is mainly to show people how the Road Crew operate on chapter ride-outs. This will include marking junctions, pre-ride briefings etc. The ride-out is open to anyone.

If you would like to attend, get yourself down to Jennings Harley-Davidson Gateshead for 10.30 am!


If you would like to contribute news or photos for our website, email us: GeordieHOG News

 

News feed, 25.2.17

The North East Coalition of Motorcycle Clubs again met at Angels Place last night. Bikers had already packed the place by the time we arrived, so we went upstairs sooner than the others. We had a brief chat with Graham and Lyn, from the 2012 MCC, as everyone else made their way upstairs too. Craig led the meeting.

The Coalition Coordinator got things underway by welcoming the Gunnars MCC to the Coalition. They’ve been to a few meetings now and everyone welcomed them aboard. Back to Craig, and he outlined a few things happening in the coming months. Last month’s write-up, here, describes a few of them but in addition, there’s:

  • 24.3: Hells Angels Anniversary, with The Revolutionaires
  • 1.4: HAMC Poker Run, as described last month, will also include a hog roast. The ride should start about 11.00 am, so get there early.
  • 15.4: the Wyrm Riders Brotherhood is hosting an Alice Cooper Nightmare, Alice in Sunderland, with an Alice tribute band. It’s all for charity, so get along if you can. It’s at The Point. Flyers should be available at the next meeting.
  • 1.7: HAMC Custom Bike Show, with loads of north-east custom bikes on display
  • 23.7: Bad-Landers MCC Ride of Respect

Craig finished with an impassioned speech about what a great thing the NECMC is and how we all stick together. There’s a fantastic spirit within the group, and long may it last. Everyone needs to play their part in keeping it cohesive, watching out for each other.

The next meeting is on 31.3, at 8.00 pm. There are lots of websites and Facebook pages for all these groups, so get online and help support them and the NECMC.


If you would like to contribute news or photos for our website, email us: GeordieHOG News