So all the planning and organisation had been done; I woke early, around 7 am on a usually lazy Sunday. Not today, as it was our first group ride-out day with all my friendly owners who live in the south West of England and Wales.
Our meeting point was Wye valley Greenway near Tintern. Now Tintern was over a 2-hour drive for me, so a nice early start was called for, so I got my 2 ESKUTE bikes loaded. I have the Wayfarer and the new Polluno. I took a second e-bike with me to let a potential new owner have an excellent day-long ride on the Polluno.
I had a few other goodies to pack as ESKUTE had helped me get all the riders an ESKUTE branded T-Shirt and some new ESKUTE accessories that ESKUTE kindly gifted us to giveaway on the day.
A few last checks and I was on my way. After a lovely drive down south, I arrived nice and early. I unloaded both my e-bikes and gave them a good check-over. I unboxed all the lovely T-shirts for our riders and packed my rucksack with the ESKUTE accessories we would give away later.
One of the first to arrive was Helen Cullimore and her husband Mark; I asked Helen if she would assist me on the day as she knew the area and the route well. She assured me she would be great, rounding everyone up for pictures and pit stops.
Ready to Ride
As everyone started to arrive, the sun came out, giving us a chance for an enjoyable ride out. I got everyone together and handed out all the T-shirts. I then got all our lovely Kuties together for a few pictures of the owners with their ESKUTE e-bikes. I also had a chat with Dave, who was borrowing my Polluno that day. He was very excited to have a chance to have a full day out on this new ESKUTE Polluno e-bike. Helen then got us on our way by leading us from the car park onto our first path and then the trails.
Enjoy the Cycling
Our route was the Wye Valley Greenway, which now follows an old railway line that has now been converted into a very well-looked-after cycle route and a great route for walkers. Our first couple of miles took us along some well-laid-out paths that took us past some lovely country cottages and some lovely scenery. We then made our way down some trails that took us down the side of the forest. Our group formed into groups of 2s and 4s, having some great conversations and getting to know each other. The great thing about the ESKUTE e-bikes is they are all very customisable. Hence, our owners discussed the changes they made to their e-bikes as we continued on our route.
Our first planned stop was to get some pictures at the mouth of the famous Tidenham Tunnel. Now, this is the old railway tunnel that is a huge 1080 metres long. This tunnel had been converted into a walking and riding pathway throughout the entire length of the tunnel. The tunnel has low waist height lighting, and you are asked to keep your bike lights turned off. The tunnel has many bats living in the roof area of the tunnel.
We set the group up at the foot of the tunnel with Helen's help getting everyone into position. We got some lovely pictures and then headed slowly through this dark and cold tunnel. We took our time due to the darkness and could feel how damp and cold this old tunnel was. It took a few minutes to travel the 1080 metres before we could see "Light at the end of the tunnel". As we exited the tunnel, it was good to get back out in the sunshine and warm up. That was a great tunnel to be included in the route and looked after very well.
We carried on another 3 or 4 miles on the trails that took us along the sides of the forest and the vast open countryside. We then travelled into Tintern. We stopped at a lovely waterside Cafe and tourist area. We got some more lovely pictures, and some of us had a cuppa and a piece of cake. Helen had planned a second stop that was a lovely country pub, so we all jumped on our e-bikes. The route to the pub took us past the historic Tintern Abbey. We all parked our e-bikes together in the beer garden of the pub and found some benches to sit outside to enjoy well-earned refreshments.
It was time to give away the free phone holders that are all ESKUTE branded and sit nicely on our e-bikes handlebars or e-bike frame. We had 4 freebies to give away, so we put all the owners' names in the hat and chose random winners. The 4 winners were very pleased and fitted the new phone holders to their e-bikes. We then enjoyed our drinks and snacks and shared stories of the areas we all ride our e-bikes. Before long, it was time to make our way back along the same trail back to the cars. We all stuck together and took time to take more pictures and continue our chats regarding our ESKUTE e-bikes. We again went through the fantastic Tidenham Tunnel and then through the forest tracks onto the cycle paths back to our meeting point.
Time to Say Goodbye
Our group then took some time to load their e-bikes and say goodbye to everyone. Dave returned my Polluno and was very pleased and how it performed. He was going home to shake his piggy bank and purchase a Polluno. The feedback from the group was the day was a great success. Many of the owners made new friends with plans to meet up for some local e-bike rides together.
Once I had packed up my car with my two ESKUTE e-bikes, it was time to hit the long road home. The day had been so much fun, and it was great to put faces to the names of some of the owners in the group. We had so much to talk about and compared many of the changes and added accessories owners had made. The group took many great pictures, so I encouraged them to share them on their social media and our group page. It was good to have a nice drive home reflecting on how much all the group owners had enjoyed the day.