SAM Tours the Isle of Wight [2009/07]

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SAM Tours the Isle of Wight

Anyone visiting this area would say how lucky we are having the New Forest and the Isle of Wight. A little while ago I asked one Jill (try keeping up with my scooter) Kernick who lives on the IOW if she would be kind enough to show us around the island and she said yes. Lilian and Anne set sail from Southampton and 5 other bikes departed from Portsmouth and we all met at Fishbourne.

Jill keeps her scooter on the mainland so she led us around on her Honda motorcycle which she was getting used to riding. It was a beautiful sunny day and flat calm so they didn't need to strap the motorbikes down on the car ferry. We had been told that it was full but Jill advised us that if you get there in plenty of time they will usually get you on and of course she was right.

As we turned out of Fishbourne, Jill immediately turned left and the sign 6'6" access greeted us, we knew we were in for a great day! Our first stop after trying to find fuel (please do come with a full tank, this is the IOW) was to take the chain ferry in Cowes. From there we passed the Yacht Squadron where Cowes week will race from and headed along the coast. Bypassing all the so called main roads on the island, Jill took us along delightful country lanes with some spectacular scenery.

When we stopped for lunch a table had been reserved for us and it was a good job the windows were closed because the sea waves were hitting the windows. After lunch we headed down to the see the Needles where we were almost blown away. Then it was a spectacular ride along the Southern coast with wonderful views of the chalk cliffs. Heading inland one of the bikes broke down so we left the ride and make a brief stop by Carisbrooke Castle before stopping for ice cream at a favourite bikers spot.

Tackling more of the country lanes, many of which are national speed limits, Jill certainly knows the best places on the island to ride. After what seemed like miles and miles of tracks, we suddenly came out on the main road where Lilian and Anne headed off to the Southampton ferry and the others headed for the Portsmouth link. Good news, our broken down rider was seen at the ferry with a recovery vehicle.

Big thank you to Jill and Roger for taking us around the island and Colin for being back marker. We should visit the island more often, it’s a shame that the special offers for cars, don't extend to motorbikes.

Lilian Hobbs

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