Saundersfoot 2014
(Click any photo to see a larger picture - then just follow the slide show.) Thanks to Howard, Rob and Terry for sharing their photos.

The usual suspects made their way to Saundersfoot on Thursday the 18th Sept. Terry and Rob with their motor-homes were booked into the Broadfield camping and caravan park on the Tenby road out of Saundersfoot, whilst Howard and Carol and Jean and I were booked into our usual hotel. Bruce and Di were not due to arrive until the following day. Those of us that had arrived decided to eat in the Merlewood Hotel that evening and good the food was.

Friday 19th September - social run
The start was from the Merlewood hotel at 10.30 for a 45 mile run around west Pembs, ending up at Folly Farm. We rode together and after some 35 miles decided to stop at Cresswell Quay, where a few others also had the same idea.

From the Quay it was only another dozen or so miles to Folly Farm, where we had free admission provided that we left our bikes on display for a couple of hours.

It's some years since I've been to Folly Farm and they do have a superb collection of vintage fairground rides and attractions. On top of that there has been a tendency to turn the place into a zoo with all the usual animals. Certainly there was plenty to see and more than a couple of hours would be needed to get around the whole of the place.

That evening we had a table booked at the Dragon Palace Chinese restaurant for Terry, Rob, Howard and Carol, plus Jean and myself. Bruce and Di had arrived and decided to eat in the Merlewood Hotel.

Saturday 20th September - The trial day
The day dawned cloudy but dry, as we all assembled on the harbour front awaiting the start at 10am. Jean and I were soon away on the Indian, riding number 4. All told there were 26 genuine Vintage machines in the programme which was nice to see.

We were soon out into the country and heading north towards Narberth. There were a few spots of rain, but they came to nothing as we negotiated some of the ups and downs of northern Pembs. The lunch stop was at Llwyngwair Manor that is a favourite watering hole for the West South Wales section and a more than suitable venue for our Dragon Tour at some point in the future.

The weather hadn't really picked up for the afternoon run back to Saundersfoot and the top of the Prescelly hills were cloaked in cloud as we set off. For some reason or other the Indian just didn't seem to be climbing the hills very well at all and I was in bottom gear, most of the time. We rode through the cloud and visibility was not good, but the Indian's lights were working well, so that was pleasing. The hills were not easy to negotiate and downs, with one rear brake, were as bad as the ups which had to be taken by racing the engine in bottom. In fact the motor was not running well at all. Then we incorrectly took a left turn to 'Login' and really should have continued on to the next turning. We went down a very steep hill into the bottom of the valley - and as the saying goes 'what goes up must come down', in our case it was a case of what goes down must go up - and the Indian failed. It's not a bike to take off on a hill and in starting the motor, I noticed that it was loose in the frame. We were looking at a fairly long push, but as the motor was loose and down on power, plus not running right, I decided to call it a day. Ring the recovery was next, but no phone signal. So it was a case of walk to the top of the hill, where I got a signal. On dialing the recovery I got a message "We're unable to connect you at this time, please try later"

By now I had worked out that we were off route and basically on our own with a knackered bike. As we were halfway up the hill Jean set off walking, whilst I ran the bike back down the hill so as to get a run at it from the bottom. A fast run in bottom gear got the bike to the top and as I waited for Jean to climb the hill, I heard the engine of another bike, also off route. The bike came around the corner and it was Terry Nicholls who had stopped to give Jean a lift up the hill. We continued with the engine not running well at all and sounding worse all the time. By now I had decided that I'd had enough, so would look for a main road back to Saundersfoot. I stopped to ask directions just as Howard And Carol in the Lomax arrived, they had also taken the wrong 'Login' turning. After getting directions we set off for the main A478 and Narberth. At one cross roads the engine stopped and I couldn't restart it. A quick look at the controls and I noticed that the right hand grip was in full retard, yet the mag was showing full advance. After disconnecting the advance cable and manually resetting the mag to full retard the bike started and ran much better, but would be stuck permanently in full retard, which was not good. We hopped on quickly and set off for Narberth, with the engine wobbling about in the frame quite a bit by now. We limped back into Saundersfoot on a hot motor, really having had enough of the Pembrokeshire hills and vowing never to bring the Indian again, as the route was just not suitable for the bike. Next time it will be the Morini, so as to be able to enjoy the ride.

The event official dinner that evening was very good and was followed by music from a combo that were quite good, I must say. We hadn't seen much of Bruce and Di and they had not booked the event dinner, instead doing their own thing most of the weekend.

Sunday - 21st September - short social run
The day dawned bright with not a cloud in the sky and I risked taking the Indian down onto the harbour for the morning public display.

The social run set off at around 11.30 for a 35 mile run ending at the Broadfield farm campsite where Terry and Rob were staying. The campsite has a restaurant and Sunday lunches were available. Interestingly, the 2015 event will be the 60th Saundersfoot event and will be a week long event based at the Broadfield campsite. I decided that our bike was too sick to use so we returned to the hotel and loaded it into the van. Then after hooking up the Lomax on it's A frame we headed homeward.