13th April 2003
Five vehicles came on this club outing. James Holloway in
his lifted Vitara followed me up to Ashbourne where we were
to meet the others. Already there was Dave Wright in an SJ413,
Daniel Swain in a Samurai and Jon Rowland with his SPOA enhanced
SJ410. This would be the SPOAs virgin outing.
We started off by driving up to Tissington Ford for a little
play in the water. Jon promptly "did-a-dave" and
broke a transfer case mounting! (his second so far, see if
we can get it up to 7 hehe!) After a quick fix with a plastic
tie we were off to the first lane. it started off with a nice
climb up a hill on a rocky track. This was an easy run to
begin the day with.
Next we joined the next lane which was fairly rutted, caused
by farm traffic. The ground was too dry and dusty to be too
difficult. This lane would be a different story if it was
sodden in a foot of water. Again the following lane after
this was a similar story, too dry and bumpy to be testing.
We travelled to the next lane which was a good few miles
long, this was rutted also, but we had no problems in traversing
it. Stunning scenery accompanied this route accross barren
farmland with hundreds of miles of traditional Derbyshire
dry-stone-wall. All the stone was mined locally from the hundreds
of small quarrys dotted around the area.
This lane was spoilt by a load of r*mblers (mostly old 'wimmin')
who shouted things like "get out your car and walk"
as we drove slowly past. Then there was this one batty tart
who seemed to be madly swatting flies in an overly-acted gesture
of wafting the dust from her face! Its your own stupid fault
for sitting next to a dusty road to eat your dinner!
After this we stopped at a pub in Ashbourne for some (highly
over-priced) food. James replaced Jons T/case mount.
After dinner leadership was delegated to Daniel who lead
us for a time. we did some more lanes down extremely rocky
roads, with some rather large boulders littered around. glad
i had my diff guard!
We decided to attempt the Stanage Edge trail near Sheffield.
This lane consists of a track made entirely of rocks which
makes for very bumpy going! There was a cliff to one side
and a sheer drop to the other, this wasnt a time to get things
wrong! There were some large rocks which had to be driven
round/over very carefully. This was helped by the zukes small
size and easy manoeuvrability. we reached a section near the
top where huge half-sunken boulders were blocking the track.
Dave attempted it first and finished up rocking sideways on
his rear diff! he was pushed free and after a couple more
goes made it. Me and Jon decided we had too much respect for
our zukes to risk damage and turned round.
I will definately be attempting this lane again though when
we have some waffles with us and more time to build up the
rocks. The other two in the group also got over this section.
We met up again at the other end of the lane where we found
James fixing a rear brake drum which had jammed on. this turns
out to have bust the bearing but the brake was freed and we
all got home ok.