Gorgeous weather and no riding at weekend so I had plans for a big night ride on tuesday, I figured going to Si's and riding up rooley moor rd, couple laps of cragg and lee then I could ride home 30+ easy. Ryan had just purchased an uphill-able bike so asked to come along, no worries. Set off from Si's this ensues about 7 miles and 1500ft of climbing. By the top of rooley moor Ryan was struggling a little but he was hanging in. We hit cragg and started a loop, again ryan was dropping back but we'd wait after each section, at the next one we waited for a while and finally saw him riding one of the dirt tracks that runs through the quarry back towards the start. Shouted and whistled but he kept going, figured he'd got pissed off/tired of the pedally nature of cragg and was going to wait at the start. We finished the loop, no sign of Ryan, uh oh. Waited around for a while asked returning riders if they'd seen a guy in a white T, nope. Tried calling him and realised he said he'd left his fone in the car, uh oh number 2. Hmm decided to ride up rooley moor rd to see if he was at the link rd, he knew the plan was to hit lee later. Up we went, no sign, hung around a bit, has he headedhis mobile to see if he'd made it back, no answer. Oooooh dear. Si headed towards home to see if he could find him, I went back to cragg, had a good look around then back up to the link, still no sign. Hmm, worried about getting benighted on the hill I set off homewards 1 to check if he'd gone the wrong way and 2 I was fully expecting a call to say he'd returned. I was almost at Gin Croft when I got a call from Si, still no sign. Damn. Si was headed for Lee in the car suggested I join him there check he wasn't broken and bleeding having fallen off the seesaw or something. Back up I went and down the link rd again, met Si near the pump track, it was now gone 10pm and 3 hours since we'd seen Ryan. I'd nearly called mountain rescue on the way over and was suggesting it to Si. Hmm. Decided to get back to his car check in with home and see then. Just before we got to the car my phone rang, ryans number, I answered but was dumb struck, so many questions, I stuttered a few times trying to decide what to say then settled on "where the **** have you been?"
He'd gotten disorientated in Cragg, gone back to the start to wait for us, got bored of waiting and came after us and for the next couple of hours was playing catch up in a right comedy of errors. A couple of riders we'd spoken to told him we were waiting at the start but by the time he got there we had moved to Lee looking for him. He saw us going down the link rd to lee so followed, we missed each other there, he hung around Lee for a while spoke to some more riders we'd chatted to who told him we were up ahead so he pushed back up the link rd and headed back down rooley moor rd probably just missing Si looking for him. He was then lost in heywood, managed to find a helpful chap with an iphone and used Find My Iphone to finally find his car at 10:30. What a balls up!
Me and Si's assumption that he was going back to the start and wait while nominally correct was a bad move (if it wasn't on a sign posted trail loop we would obviously have gone after him) and him deciding to follow us when we were probably 10mins+ infront compounded it, the rest just spiralled from that. So lessons learned biggest of which is DON'T FORGET YOUR MOBILE.
Here have some pics