17/01/2017 - The First Cotic Ride Out - Ladybower, Peak District


Cotic Ride Out - Peak Edition

Coming into 2017 we have been talking about other events we can do beyond the current Exclusive Ride Days and Open Demos that Sam is running so well. With things quiet on the demo side this month, we decided to keep it local and do the first Cotic Ride Out - a ride put on by us for owners, but with the option of riding a demo bike too should you so wish. Not a usual short loop demo though, a Proper Ride (tm).

With this in mind, we thought we would keep it local and sent out an open invite to meet us for a ride on Saturday 14th January at Ladybower in the Peak District. Close enough to be on our doorstep, but far enough out that most of us find we don't ride her that often, and as an added bonus it is the very definition of Proper Mountain Biking.

We were blown away by the response! Sam had to stop booking out demo bikes as Black Betty (the Cotic demo van) would be full of demo bikes, and lots of positive emails came in saying people were going to turn up. Then the winter decided to arrive properly, and we all watched nervously over the preceding week as the weather news forecast THUNDERSNOWMAGGEN!!! It did snow, and it was cold, and it was with some level of trepidation that Cy, Sam, Paul and Richard trucked over to the A57 Viaduct to see if anyone would actually turn up. We needn't have worried! As Cy and Paul arrived, Sam was busy setting up people on demos bikes, and plenty more cars were turning up with Cotic's on the roof, or stuffed in the boot.

It was cold, and there was snow on the tops, but the wind was low and apart from a worrying shower of rain just after 10am as we were kitting up to roll out, the rest of the day was blue skies, and awesome riding conditions.

In the end there were about 25 of us on the ride, and what a great time we had. We looped around to Aston and headed up Hope Brink to Win Hill, and one of our favourite views in the Peak. It didn't disappoint, with snow capped hills as far as the eye could see. We mounted up and mucked about in the snow on the way down to the Roman Road, and then climbed again back to Hope Cross.


Cy at this point was searching out any patch of snow he could, being Plus tyre equipped and therefore the nearest thing we had to an appropriate bike for the conditions!

Once at Hope Cross, most people had a bite to eat and then the group split, with half heading off along the rest of the Roman Road, down 'Potato Alley', and the other half heading straight down The Beast and up Haggside. We met again at the top of the hill and head off down Lockerbrook Farm and the Screaming Mile. Quick shout out to Shane and James from Peak MTB: They have done a load of work digging and clearing drains down here and despite snow melt and mid-winter conditions, we can't remember the last time this trail was running so well. Top work!

At Fairholmes the worst crash of the day occurred.....on flat tarmac! Flat, cold, shaded, boiler plate iced tarmac. A clatter and one of group was down. He was fine, but we very quickly moved back into the sunshine.

With the exception of a couple of people who needed to get back, the whole group headed up the steep cobbles and we winched our way up onto Winstone Lee Tor for more views to store in the 'this is why' bank.


The final trail of the day was down to Cutthroat Bridge and around and down to the Ladybower Inn. An awesome downhill, made so much better by seeing the grins on everyone's faces as they came hooning down.

And then we were done. Understandably, given how cold it was getting with the sun setting, most people thanked us and headed off. The Cotic crew and a handful of the riders retired to the pub for a swift pint, which finished off a bloody marvellous day out.

First of all, thanks so much to everyone who came out and made it such a blast. And for those of you Cotic owners further afield, we will definitely be doing some more Cotic Ride Outs throughout the year in other parts of the country. Look out for details when we book them.

Check out the full gallery by Richard Baybutt on Flickr…