2013 Isle of Man TT

Discussion in 'EMEA' started by Platinumgrit, Jul 12, 2012.

  1. Platinumgrit

    Platinumgrit Adventurer

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    Hi all,

    Name's Joe, I live in Sydney Australia. I have 2 bikes, a trusty 88 Honda Bros 650 (Penske Rear shock + GP Suspension built F3 CBR600 Forks) and an 04 CBR600RR.

    I am going to the 2013 Isle of Man TT.

    Anyway, onto the Questions...

    Anyone here going? Also, who has already been? What advice can you give around accommodation for the TT? What's camping like? I'm trying to book accommodation through the 'official' IOMTT Travel Agency (regency travel) and I get the feeling I really don't rate terribly highly in their list of priorities. All their packages have pretty much sold out, and I'm trying to get some solid information and prices but have yet to get any. They probably have people falling over themselves to secure a place at any price, so I guess I'll probably miss out.

    I've also had a chat with Sportsnet Holidays (here in Melbourne), they've quoted $8,484 for the package they're offering. That's outside of my price range, considering I'm kicking off 5 months travelling in Europe afterwards.

    Can anyone tell me what my options are on the cheaper end? What's it like camping around that time? Will I be freezing my balls off, wet & miserable? Plus, I want to stay somewhere close to a pub - don't want to have to walk 5 miles from the camping ground to the bar if I can help it. The walk back, well, gonna have my beer coat so I won't care... ;D

    If I want to really experience the atmosphere, is Douglas the place I must stay? What about Ramsey, or the other towns?

    Anyway, I thought I'd ask as, I get the feeling if I rely on Regency, I'm going to miss out. And fair enough, I mean their priority is serving customers who are right there, throwing money at 'em. I'm in Australia, and gotta do business by email.

    Any help anyone can give would be so appreciated. Hopefully, I might bump into a few of you over there :)

    Joe
    #1
  2. High Country Herb

    High Country Herb Adventure Connoiseur

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    I too have been researching a trip to the TT. I will be going in 2015, since that will be the first year when the race is scheduled late enough to get away from work.

    I found a couple of camping options:

    http://www.glenloughcampsite.com/ - Sounds like it isn't too close to pubs, but does have shuttle bus service.

    http://www.biketours-uk.com/catman/subcat/6/86/index.cms - This one is a package deal, including ferry ticket, camping, and BBQ, for around £ 550. It really sounds like fun to me. Once again, its about 3 km from Douglas, and would require shuttle bus, but it sounds like a party is onsite.

    Then there are the bed and breakfast options. I like this one, because they do enduro tours of the "green lanes". I'm unclear if the bikes are included or not.
    http://www.clagmooar.com/enduro.htm

    If you do any of these, I hope you'll post a review. Good luck!
    #2
  3. Platinumgrit

    Platinumgrit Adventurer

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    Mate! Thanks! :clap

    I had a look over Biketours UK's site, the guy sounds like a champ! He sounds like a lot of fun, really down to earth and I'm quite curious about his other tours as well. I am reckon the kind of people his package will attract will be a riot too. I can't imagine too many boring nights around the camp, nor any boring sessions at the pub :freaky

    I sent him an email, hopefully he's still got some spots left for TT13. His gig sounds exactly like the sort of thing I want.

    The Clagmoar thing looks good, but I don't think they provide bikes with it. There wasn't any mention of it, and it seemed to assume you'd be bringing your own. I'll be riding a sports bike, so enduro won't really work. If I were riding an enduro bike, I'd be really interested though. Maybe that'll have to be 2014...

    Anyway, thanks for the suggestions. Biketours UK looks like an absolute winner :D
    #3
  4. Platinumgrit

    Platinumgrit Adventurer

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    Just an update on this - I'm booked in for the Bike Tours UK Isle of Man 2013 trip, and I'm enquiring about the French Alps trip shortly afterwards: http://www.biketours-uk.com/catman/view/1/487/index.cms

    I spoke to an Aussie guy who'd just come back from the IOM TT tour with Bill, and said it was a lot of fun, and he met a great group of people and riders. The tours are not for people who want their hand held, but for those who appreciate all the crucial things being taken care of and don't like being suffocated. Bill takes exceptional care of everyone, and works very hard to make the time as hassle free and enjoyable as possible, but he also allows a good bit of space to breathe and do your own thing when you feel like it.

    I'm really looking forward to it, and personally can't wait :D

    Now I just need to decide on what bike I'll be buying....
    #4
  5. mcguyver

    mcguyver Long timer

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    Hey Joes you are in for a great time.

    I shipped my strom across in 2011 and spent both practice and race week there. Was fantastic and something I would defineatly love to do again. check out the home stay options on the TT website. we scored a luxurious room in a massion overlooking douglas bay for 30 pounds a night including brekky.

    The weather can be dodgy at anytime. Remember its a tiny island in the North sea. If you havnt already booked your ferry crossing you may have missed out. keep an eye on the Steampacket website daily as booking often become available due to cancellations.

    If your interested check out my blog of the trip here.

    http://seqtrailrider.typepad.com/my_weblog/iom-tt/

    Cant help with camping options except to say that everyone looked like they were having a great time at the couple of campsites we checked out.
    You must have a crab bap at Peel.

    Do laps of the circuit early in the day to scope out spectator points.

    If you have any specific questions let me know and I will try and answwr.
    #5
  6. MichaelJ

    MichaelJ Long timer

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    Hmmm - 28th July to 7th July :huh It isn't many rides that you can finish before you begin :wink:

    I recommend against the Alps tour - it will spoil you for all other roads. :D

    When I get back home after two or three weeks in the Alps, I don't even look at my bike for a month.

    A good source of info is the Alpine Roads website.
    #6
  7. Trixy

    Trixy n00b

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    Hi, Apologies for this tardy response (and my maiden post). I visit the Isle of Man every year, it’s the greatest bike fest on Earth! When alone I camp or Homestay, when with partner I spoil her in a hotel. For what it’s worth:

    1: Don’t worry about the ferry being booked up; tour companies block book 2 years in advance, taking all available places, then cancel unsold ones in March. Ring the Steam Packet Co up first thing on Monday 1st April and I betcha you’ll get what you want. It depends on the previous year’s weather and as last year was the worst in the history of the TT, bookings should be a bit thinner this coming year.

    2: Homestays are excellent value and some folk really strike lucky, but they can also be a gamble. Best if you can find a contact for a personal recommendation.

    3: Campsites are an even bigger gamble and you can sign up for a fortnight’s utter misery. Michael United AFC & Nobles Park have a rep for partying and rowdiness (I realise this may be what you’re looking for!), Glen Wyllin is where the Manx parents park their teenage children for that fortnight. Cronk Aashen Farm is quite strictly run but this suits me. I’ve also heard of a small site with a good rep on the outskirts of Ramsey.

    4: Consider buying a bike in the UK this winter - you’d get a cracking bargain and probably sell it for more post-TT! A surprising number of visitors do this.

    5: DON’T RIDE LIKE THE ADVANCED RIDER YOU ARE!! The middle of the road is reserved for the German lunatics and they will come at you from both directions at 160+mph. Every year brings its fatalities; its a serious business. But, the coppers make the mountain section one way, so you can cheerfully use the whole road - no matter how good you think you are, someone will come past at 20mph more!

    6: If you can’t get a ferry booking from Heacham or Liverpool, consider riding around to Stranraer, crossing to N.Ireland, then ride down to Belfast and cross from there. It’s only £40 more and a great ride.

    7: Consider posting your camping kit or buying cheap serviceable gear on the Island and leaving it, Glastonbury style. Most campsites have a barn full of abandond kit.

    8: If I can help try me on zen112532@zen.co.uk

    9: Don’t get caught speeding. The fines are off the scale - 2 years ago I did 42 in a 40 and they hit me for £185. A fellow camper was hit for £2400!!

    Finally, I wouldn't use any agency for this + you don't need to stay in Douglas - every town has it's own personality and they're all awash with like-minded bikers

    Tone (Trixy is the bike - so don’t get excited)
    #7
  8. Forde

    Forde Been here awhile

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    howaya

    ill be at TT 2013.

    just wanted to point out that the biketours uk campsite is in fact glennlough which you also posted a link to.

    homestays are a fucking rip off. one night is the same price as a week camping. and camping is where all the craic is id hardly bother going if i had to stay in a house and miss the fun. Homestay is £25-40 a night and glennlough is like £7 a night.

    glennlough is awesome good facilities and it is the biggest campsite on the island. glennlough is kind of a campsite for people who like to party. if your boring go somewhere else! has a big tent with bands at night and bring your own booze, and a cafe on site. its right on the track and shuttle bus to douglas runs every 10mins approx from early morn to late night. the bus costs £2. no hassle. i head to a different pub every night in douglas. there is also a nearby pub but its kinda out on its own.

    does that biketoursuk guy lend you a bike? if not i cant see what he is charging you so much for.
    #8
  9. Platinumgrit

    Platinumgrit Adventurer

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    Tone,

    thanks mate!! What an awesome reply, thankyou!

    1. Ferry tickets are sorted by Bill - that's part of the package :)
    2. Yeah, gonna camp, that's where all the action will be :D
    3. Done Cadets in boarding school, 2 weeks out in the bush with nothing but what you have in your pack. Slept on the ground on a plastic sheet with a 'hutchie' (small plastic tarp thing) pitched over me. Had it rain 2 nights, and felt the water running under and around me while I wait, and wait, and wait for bloody ages for the first light of dawn to let me know the hell is over. (learned very clearly why the troop leader drilled into us the need for digging a drainage channel around where we slept!)

    4. I'd love to buy a bike, but it's turning out to be a nightmare? For an Aussie guy, I need insurance, and I can't get insurance unless I'm a resident/citizen. Do you know any way as an Aussie I can buy a bike? I'm so damn keen to buy one of those Isle of Man Edition K7 Gixxers...

    5. Yeah, I've heard about the Germans, and I've been thoroughly warned about the fatalities and don't intend to be one. I've had my narrow brush with death and spent 2 years and a shitload of money recovering, so the Germans can have their insanity all to themselves. I plan to ride the course at least once though, fingers crossed I don't get taken out by some fckwit...

    6. Thanks, that's a damn good suggestion. If I didn't have my ticket already booked I'd do that instead. I love taking out of the way places and long ways round...

    8. THANKS!!! :D

    9. Holy SH!T. OK, so, just to repeat that, don't get caught speeding? So if I *am* speeding, just make sure I don't stop yeah? lol.

    I hear ya. The main reason I'm using Bike Tours UK because Bill's been recommended by quite a few trustworthy bikers and he's been unreasonably helpful before I've given him any money. He's really gone out of this way and spent a lot of time communicating. Given it's my first time 500 quid is not much to pay for having all the ferry tickets, camping supplies, camp site, etc etc taken care of. Once I get a good feel for the place I'll probably do it myself but I'm trading money for time + inconvenience + hassle. Plus, it's gonna be good going with a group, it makes things a fair bit easier. Also Bill has a shed full of abandoned camping gear I can take my pick of, so that's simplified the camping supplies consideration.
    #9
  10. Platinumgrit

    Platinumgrit Adventurer

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    Aye, I'm up for a good craic! That's why the camping option had to be done.

    As for why Bill @ Bike Tours UK, see my reply above ;-)
    #10
  11. BobLoblaw

    BobLoblaw Comfortably Numb

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    I know Bill. BikeTours-uk is a brilliant choice. You will have a blast
    #11
  12. navi

    navi Been here awhile

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    Went in 2010, loved it!

    Stayed in Douglas ( kinda a hotel on the prom), and traveled the island

    Woke up this morning and decided to go again, everything sure books up fast. I am planing ( would like to be ) June 2nd/3rd to 7th/8th or something like that.

    In 2010 it was raining sideways on a bunch of days.... not overly excited about camping.

    So if any one has some lines on accommodation ( 1 person ) , sure would like to hear

    Cheers,
    Navi
    #12
  13. Platinumgrit

    Platinumgrit Adventurer

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    Yeah, I'm a bit wary about the camping aspect, and the rain. The Isle is a small bit of land in the middle of a big ocean, if there's rain there's gonna be wind too! I'm thinking about picking up one of these: http://www.hennessyhammock.com/

    My only concern is somewhere to string it up? What if the campsite doesn't have suitable trees? Or where everyone else is camping is like 300m away from where a suitable bunch of trees can be found? I'd be nigel no friends way off the side somewhere...

    Still, beats trying to go to sleep wet, cold, and miserable.
    #13
  14. navi

    navi Been here awhile

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    I have a H hammock tent, but I can't remember seeing a spot that I could have used it.

    My take on it is that a free standing tent would be a better choice.

    Easy, and has a bit more room to stash your stuff
    #14
  15. Platinumgrit

    Platinumgrit Adventurer

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    good point. can't stash a lot of stuff in a hammock ;-)
    #15
  16. navi

    navi Been here awhile

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    Found the picture !

    2010 took the rail up to Bungalow at the top of the mountain

    It was raining sideways, the race that day was called.

    The folks at the train station let people hang out in the offices, stairwells and everywhere to stay out of the rain. Had a great time !
    [​IMG]
    #16
  17. Warin

    Warin Retired

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    As the above post shows - take great wet weather gear. :rofl

    And a great tent. Some who camped also bought plastic painters drop sheets - and used them AS well as a tent. Looked like a good idea, though it only drizzled one day for the week when I went.

    The Glenlough camp site is where I staid, there was a beer tent on site, so no worries there. And if your lazy you can view the race from the northern edge of the camp ground. The facilities are not new but serviceable.

    You'll ride the race circuit more than once. When choosing a view point please consider what happens if a racer crashes, you don't want to be in the line of fire. Year went I think it was 4 racers died, and 4 spectators died from the crashes. I chose my view points with a lot of consideration for the trajectory lines and possible speeds. I did not chose places where speeds were high. Your choice. :freaky


    It is a good thing to do, even if you don't like normal racing! The Isle of Man has a lot packed into it. If I go again I'll spend 2 weeks - do the practice week as well. Maybe even stay a few days after the race ends
    . :eek1

    --------------------
    As for the
    abandoned camping gear at the end of the TT, the farmers need their sheds for farming ... so the abandoned gear gets scraped.
    #17
  18. High Country Herb

    High Country Herb Adventure Connoiseur

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    Reading your updates has me excited as if I'm going this year, but alas, my trip is 2 years off. About half of my group wants to stay in a small inn of some sort, but I'm pushing for the camping experience. I will be so happy to be there, I wouldn't care if rain were blowing up my kilt!

    We plan to rent bikes in the London area, and keep them for the time we are on IOM. Once the race is over, 80% of our group is heading back to the US. At that point, my wife and I will rent a small car to complete our UK loop (we will need plenty of storage space for bottles of various spirits).

    Have you thought about one of those travel cots? I don't know the name, but quite a few riders carry them. The legs are only about 10cm long, and they fold up small.
    #18
  19. navi

    navi Been here awhile

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    I'm going!!!!

    Booked my flights,

    Booked my camping adventure

    Booked a nice 990 to ride

    All I need to do is Pack !

    It's nice to be me !
    #19
  20. Forde

    Forde Been here awhile

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    yeah i see your point, just wanted to point out that you'd easily save well over £200 by sorting that stuff yourself and it wouldnt even be hard to do.

    you going to buy a bike just to ride at the TT? you must have money to throw away lol. why not rent one? if you buy a bike you will need to get it registered to yourself at an address in the uk and make sure it has a current MOT and is taxed, and you will have to insure it which will be a bummer. you rent it all that is covered.
    #20