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Old 04-30-2013, 03:30 AM   #1
KevinC OP
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Back again! The 16th Keswick Beer Festival

I started this ride report just after I got back from it last year then I rather forgot all about it, but since I'm off for this years trip in a few weeks I thought I'd better finish and post it!



Last year (2011) my annual trip up to the Keswick Beer Festival didn't go according to plan as, a week before heading off, my bike decided to eat it's alternator.



Which was jolly annoying.

So no ride report last year which means you got to miss out on stuff like this,



and this,



and this.



Then, when the weekend before I was due to head north my right turn indicator decided to pack up I was not best pleased, however I wasn't going to miss out 2 years in a row and got down to some dismantling



and cleaning of the offending connector.



Everything finally working okay it was time to head off.
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Old 04-30-2013, 04:00 AM   #2
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Sunday 27th May

One change of plan was, because I was working up in Cambridge, I thought I'd ride up on the Sunday before the festival and head north directly from there.

The other thing to mention is the weather, we'd had a very dry winter and, as is all too typical here, the powers that be were screaming drought and plotting hosepipe bans all of which had the usual effect, we ended up with one of the wettest summers on record. That being said it was a gorgeous weekend and I set off on the 70ish mile journey,







though what hadn't occurred to me was I'd finish the journey heading into the late evening sun which wasn't much fun!





That aside though a jolly nice start to the trip.

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Old 04-30-2013, 06:50 AM   #3
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I'd started working in Cambridge on 1st May on a two month temporary contract here,



founded in 1534 by a Letters Patent issued by Henry VIII they published their first book in 1584, Two Treatises of the Lord His Holie Supper, and, according to the timeline laid out around their rather splendid staff canteen, their major claim to fame was in 1877 they turned down the book that was to become the Oxford English Dictionary!

Very nice place to work, around the offices they have things like this,



and this,



while outside they have a conservation area,



a cricket pitch,



and next door behind the bowling green a nuclear bunker that in time of war would have acted as a regional government base.

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Old 05-01-2013, 03:57 AM   #4
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Thursday 31st May

Ready to head off the Keswick I had, naturally, been checking the weather forecast all week and it had looked okay but, being a cynical soul, I took a look at the rainfall radar that morning to see if they'd been right and oh dear.



Nothing much I could do other than remember the old maxim, if you ride a bike in Britain you'll get wet, deal with it, so I set off from my digs in Cambridge,



and headed up the A1.



I met the rain at Newark and from then on it was a wet slog all the way to Keswick where I arrived rather early so I took a damp loop round Bassenthwaite and had a bit of a rest,





but to be honest I was feeling somewhat bedraggled,



so headed to my hotel rather early where I was given the sort of welcome to cheer up anyone's day.





One question was resolved, in my usual room the bathroom has hooks in the ceiling above the bath which I'd always wondered about, turns out they're for hanging up your bike gear to dry!



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Old 05-01-2013, 02:07 PM   #5
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Having got myself settled in and because, naturally, the rain had stopped I took a little wander around,







while waiting for Nigel to arrive. A loud throb announced the appraoch of his Akrapovic and I watched as he headed up the lane to the hotel, rode past the entrance, turned around in the school entrance next door, and finally made it into the correct car park!



In the evening we headed off to the sponsors evening at the festival, checked out our beer,



met up with old friends,



and got ready for the main event starting Friday.

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Old 05-02-2013, 07:36 AM   #6
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Old 05-02-2013, 07:54 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MayQueen View Post
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Old 05-06-2013, 05:28 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by KevinC View Post


and got ready for the main event starting Friday.


Am going to be working in London for six months. I wish I could make it to one of these kind of festivals this time around. Real ale is soo hard to find in the US. Actually, I only have to drive about 20 miles for cask, but given how traffic is, its really a PITA
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Old 05-06-2013, 03:16 PM   #9
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Am going to be working in London for six months. I wish I could make it to one of these kind of festivals this time around. Real ale is soo hard to find in the US. Actually, I only have to drive about 20 miles for cask, but given how traffic is, its really a PITA
Here's a list of beer festivals to be going on with

If you're in London in November you'll have to come over to my local one, I'm sure we can find some bed space for you!
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Old 05-05-2013, 04:39 AM   #10
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Enjoying your report + pics.



Thanks!

JM.
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Old 05-06-2013, 05:15 AM   #11
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Enjoying your report + pics.



Thanks!

JM.
Glad you're enjoying it
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Old 05-06-2013, 05:17 AM   #12
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Sunday 3rd June

Normally this would be going home day but the powers that be had played around with the normal spring public holidays because of the Queen's Diamond Jubilee and both Monday and Tuesday were holidays so we decided to stay the extra night and get some more riding in. What were we thinking? It was cold, windy and thoroughly unpleasant, the only saving grace was the rain band that covered most of the country was stuck about 20 miles south of us.

So deciding to leave the bikes resting for the moment, on the off chance the weather improved,



we wandered down to the new bike cafe, had a nice chat to the few hardier souls who'd ridden there (the arrivals looked jolly cold and, in a few cases, jolly damp) then headed down into Keswick.





We checked out the market,



and had a nice slow mooch round the many walking and climbing related shops while enjoying the views you get to peek around the town.



By evening the market had gone to be replaced by some sort of jubilee event,



but we had other priorities on our mind, or rather stomach!



After sorting out the inner man we found a band was playing by the Moot Hall, and very pleasant they were too,



then it was a wander to our last pub and our last pints of the weekend,



where we got chatting to a nice New Zealand couple who were waiting to get their seat in the restaurant, despite the weather or maybe because of it Keswick's eating establishments were very busy, before heading back to our hotel. Naturally that's when the sun decided to make an appearance for the first time that day!

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