RE: Chasing The Sun :Dream Drive

RE: Chasing The Sun :Dream Drive

Tuesday 14th April 2015

Chasing The Sun: My Dream Drive

PHer Dan Thompson proves how an early start can unlock hidden delights, even in crowded Surrey



Name: Dan Thompson
Route: Surrey back roads medley
Car used: MGB V8

The route:
"The best bits of Surrey in around two hours, including a blast through the Hindhead Tunnel, and the excellent A272 from Petersfield to Wisborough Green. Best to do this one early to avoid any commuter traffic and to give you a free run at the tunnel. This is a favourite of mine because it combines all the areas we have visited in the MG over the years, and there are so many of offshoots and variations that you'll never get bored. A good extension is to take in the roads south towards Goodwood - a favourite around the Revival, especially worth parking up somewhere in Midhurst to watch all the classics en route.

"The route starts anywhere near the A3, I just happened to start in Woking, at 5am! I had got the car set up the night before as I was keen to make the most of it and had to fill the tanks. I had also rented a pair of GoPros to try and get some on car footage, so I gave the car a quick run at 10 the previous evening, just so the neighbours would know what was making the noise the following morning when I set off."


Why it's a dream drive:
"I had done some man maths beforehand, which has proven to be correct as I don't have a speeding ticket (touch wood). Basically the Hindhead tunnel is 1.5 miles long from camera to camera (please check it yourself on google maps), so that gives you 1 minute 17 seconds to plod along doing well under the 70 mph limit. Geeky I know, but well worth it, just do it early enough and the only traffic is London bound, and any southbound is in the nearside lane.

"The rest of the route down the A3 was basically a good excuse to get the oil warmed up and the engine running sweetly. I never tire of the sound of the V8, and I plan to have many more in future. Once the A3 reaches near Petersfield you can pick your way onto the A272, either directly off the A3 or as I did via Liss, Hillbrow and Rogate. I loved the way the B-road wound its way up and over as the sun was rising through the trees. This time of year makes it a perfect route to do west to east, I just went on a perfect weather forecast the previous day, and took my chance, packing the cameras and kit the night before."

Highlights and lowlights:
"The A272 had a few cars on it, but a short wait in a couple of lay-bys for the next car gave me a good empty run on most of the road. The road has a fair number of 40mph limits, but it doesn't have to be done quickly, especially when the car makes 40 feel like 60, being so low and compact. The towns of Midhurst and Petworth are picturesque and there a few walled sections through which the exhaust note sounded fantastic. I went as far as Wisborough Green and took a left back towards Guildford, via Cranleigh, Ewhurst and Shere. I love the rocky sections on the roads that run north to south through the Surrey hills as the rocky cuttings are both dramatic and sonically awesome."


Sights, stop-offs and diversions:
"I didn't stop en route, as not much was open at that time. But there are plenty of good pubs along the route. My favourites are on the way back in Shere, being the William Bray and the supposedly haunted White Horse, as well as the tucked away Stephan Langton. My main aim was to stop at Newlands Corner, but I had the added bonus of an excellent bacon sandwich at the roadside in the lay-by on the A25 just out of Shere.

"I can't get enough of the view from Newlands Corner, it reminds me slightly of one called 'Surprise View' in Derbyshire somewhere near Froggatt Edge."


Follow the route here.


   
   
Author
Discussion

w824gb3

Original Poster:

168 posts

155 months

Tuesday 14th April 2015
quotequote all
Why is the roof up????????????

Mogul

2,336 posts

156 months

Tuesday 14th April 2015
quotequote all
It's structural!

getmecoat

MikeGoodwin

1,247 posts

50 months

Tuesday 14th April 2015
quotequote all
Perfect been waiting for a route on my doorstep. Cheers!

unsprung

2,395 posts

57 months

Tuesday 14th April 2015
quotequote all

A sense of occasion at such an early start. My fav's:

- not just any classical motor, but a V8 classical motor

- savouring the bacon sandwich along the way!


IanO

104 posts

170 months

Tuesday 14th April 2015
quotequote all
What a great route, I have to do the Guildford to Petersfield bit once a week for work and it is lovely and usually traffic free. I will try the rest of the route on the return journey. Agree about Newlands corner - it is spectacular and usually a good bike meet there most weekends.
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pycraft

80 posts

117 months

Tuesday 14th April 2015
quotequote all
One thing to watch for on the 272 - unmarked police bikes. They have signs warning of such, but I've seen them in action once - having pulled over a biker who passe me on a blind ben a mile or so earlier...!

The 272 is a great road, full stop.

Turbobanana

1,088 posts

134 months

Tuesday 14th April 2015
quotequote all
"Basically the Hindhead tunnel is 1.5 miles long from camera to camera (please check it yourself on google maps), so that gives you 1 minute 17 seconds to plod along doing well under the 70 mph limit."

Does it not have a speedometer?

masermartin

1,622 posts

110 months

Tuesday 14th April 2015
quotequote all
Article said:
"The best bits of Surrey in around two hours,"
Otherwise known as "leaving Surrey and going to Hampshire and Sussex" heheboxedin

Great route though, will try it out this weekend hopefully smile

The Bandit

742 posts

128 months

Tuesday 14th April 2015
quotequote all
pycraft said:
One thing to watch for on the 272 - unmarked police bikes. They have signs warning of such, but I've seen them in action once - having pulled over a biker who passe me on a blind ben a mile or so earlier...!

The 272 is a great road, full stop.
Yep. They seem to patrol the surrounding area around Goodwood when there's an event on such as Saywell days etc looking for people leaving the circuit.

threespires

2,963 posts

144 months

Tuesday 14th April 2015
quotequote all
Great write up, great car, great route.

MathieuGT

36 posts

46 months

Tuesday 14th April 2015
quotequote all
Definitely going to try this one, favourite local area to drive through this is.

DJRC

23,563 posts

169 months

Tuesday 14th April 2015
quotequote all
Guess Im in the minority then for fking loathing the 272. fking annoying road, very difficult to overtake and make progress on. Fine if its empty, but it almost always isn't.

Whiters

359 posts

172 months

Wednesday 15th April 2015
quotequote all
DJRC said:
Guess Im in the minority then for fking loathing the 272. fking annoying road, very difficult to overtake and make progress on. Fine if its empty, but it almost always isn't.
Depends which bit, but part of its appeal is that sections of it are so twisty. The bits from Winchester through Petersfield, Midhurst and Petworth are fast and flowing and have a reasonable amount of overtaking opportunities. The section from Petworth through to Billingshurst is great. Gets noticeable busier heading east after the A24 Junction.

A283, 285 and 286 are also worth seeking out. All lovely

43034

2,737 posts

101 months

Wednesday 15th April 2015
quotequote all
Lets see the GoPro footage then? biggrin

Also, who did you rent them off, local or national company?

Baryonyx

16,210 posts

92 months

Wednesday 15th April 2015
quotequote all
Relatives of mine live in Godalming - the South strikes me as the sort of place where you have to get up early if you want an empty road.

dannodj

24 posts

125 months

Wednesday 15th April 2015
quotequote all
Thanks for all the comments, and yes it is Hampshire and Sussex, I stand corrected. The GoPros were rented from DV Camera Hire in London, I learnt a lot about how the cameras work, I would recommend using a separate mic, somewhere out of the wind for picking up the engine sound, so having one inside worked well for sound (excuse for having the roof up) and make sure that the mounts are as tight as possible as vibration can easily be picked up without a more solid clamp. So the footage was a bit rough, but I'll have a go at editing at some point. Cheers D wink

DJRC

23,563 posts

169 months

Thursday 16th April 2015
quotequote all
Whiters said:
DJRC said:
Guess Im in the minority then for fking loathing the 272. fking annoying road, very difficult to overtake and make progress on. Fine if its empty, but it almost always isn't.
Depends which bit, but part of its appeal is that sections of it are so twisty. The bits from Winchester through Petersfield, Midhurst and Petworth are fast and flowing and have a reasonable amount of overtaking opportunities. The section from Petworth through to Billingshurst is great. Gets noticeable busier heading east after the A24 Junction.

A283, 285 and 286 are also worth seeking out. All lovely
Are you taking the piss? From Winchester to Petersfield, you have the initial section off the sharp left onto it, downwards and then up again to the top of the hill. Then down the two long sections just a bit after, but both have ints on the right that take out a fair bit of those straights. You almost always have traffic on those sections. There isn't really another overtaking section until after the village and the cpl of miles before the lights. After the lights you have the initial section and then a cpl more of straightish bits before you get nr Langrish, but those sections aren't really straights. Visibility isn't great.

No, sorry but its a sodding annoying section. Very rare to do it in less than 20 mins. Its usually still 40mins from the A34/m3 roundabout to get to Pompey along the 272, roughly similar to staying on the 3 and the 27. Arguably more frustrating also! And I can get there before 8am and its still a git!

masermartin

1,622 posts

110 months

Thursday 16th April 2015
quotequote all
I think I see the problem here - you're trying to appreciate a decent road during your weekday commute. The only effect this has is to colour your opinion of a decent road. Try it on a Saturday or a Sunday morning at that time instead.

mr2j

516 posts

91 months

Friday 17th April 2015
quotequote all
I do like this route - I have done sections of it separately a number of times and I think earlyish on a weekend it would be a really lovely drive.