Well, here we go again. I tried to set this up a few weeks ago, but an absolute deluge on the Sunday morning in question meant that nobody arrived for the start – much to my relief, it was not a day for being on a bike. I think it was because of the rain ……?
We go in an anti-clockwise direction which means that it is about 32 miles to the first and only stop, the payback being that it’s a bit of a breeze home after that. You might want to bring an energy bar or two to see you through to the break.
From Moulton to Sywell, Mears Ashby and Wilby and then we cross the river towards Wollaston. From there we head to Poddington, Wymington and Newton Bromsgrove and then out further east to Chelveston. We skirt Raunds, and turn and cross the river again into Ringstead and after another mile or so cake and coffee and, sometimes, bacon butties. I will phone ahead and ask them to keep some bacon for us as they stop serving breakfast food before we get there. They obliged last time.
After coffee it’s an attractive section through the Addingtons to Irthlingborough and, from there,a bit of a schlep up to Finedon alongside the A6, (Oh, it’s only a mile or so – you’ll manage!). The beautiful single track road, (The Slips) takes us to The Harrowdens and from there it’s Mears Ashby, Sywell and back to Moulton.
47 miles in all, and I expect to be back in Moulton well before 3pm.
Eleven cyclists set off from the canoe centre last Sunday on a warmish breezy day for Tim’s 56 miler to Keysoe. Good to see new rider Mark on a fine traditional steel Thorn with Rohloff hub gears and a front hub dynamo – a true touring set up – and to welcome again Chris.
With the quite fierce breezes in our faces it was nearly a struggle to reach Scald End Farm just outside Thurleigh, but very worth while. We were welcomed at the cafe by exceptionally cheery and efficient service and a few full breakfasts were ordered to say nothing of the bacon butties. The addition of cake was too much after that, but most of us managed.
Homeward bound then with bulging stomachs, but with the wind behind us, saw the peloton split in a number of places. Front runners were deservedly punished for going through a junction ahead of the leader by taking a wrong turning at Felmersham and had to be called back. One was too far ahead to hear and, no matter that attempts were made to phone him, he was never seen or heard from again. We hope you made it home John C, but if not and you’re still out there pedalling like mad, I can recommend a fine B and B in Glasgow which, at the speed you were going, you should have reached by now!
We had eaten too much for there to be any excuse to stop at Castle Ashby, so we did, and the coffee and cake was as fine as ever.
Back to base and we realised that we’d all averaged something over 14mph which, for a ‘steady ride’ was not at all bad. Couldn’t have been done without the cake.
Lovely ride Tim, thank you. Good quiet roads and a certain amount of new territory covered..
Tim, our webmaster, will be leading this ride and writes:
Start: 9.30 a.m. Meet: Nene Whitewater Canoe Centre, Bedford Road, Northampton, NN4 7AA. (If coming by car, don’t park within the car park barrier. There is plenty of space on the approach road.) Distance: 56 miles Speed: 12-14 m.p.h. Refreshments: Scald End Farm, Thurleigh (at approx 30 miles)
From the Canoe Centre we head out in a generally eastwards direction through the villages of Cogenhoe, Grendon, Bozeat, Odell, Sharnbrook and Riseley en route to our most easterly point at Keysoe. From here we turn south and west to our stop for refreshment at Scald End Farm, located just outside Thurleigh. Here you can feast on the breakfast “fit for a king” or maybe one of the several cakes on offer. There is also the benefit of a cosy wood burning stove to warm oneself by.
Once replete, we continue south westwards through Milton Earnest, Harrold and Lavendon before heading north & west on our final homeward leg via Yardley Hastings, Castle Ashby (where a second tea stop is eminently possible) and Cogenhoe Hill before arriving back at the Canoe Centre.
The IPWR has been an amazing experience but everything has been overshadowed by Mike Hall’s death on the road near Canberra. Not since Tom Simpson, in a very different era and context, has British cycling lost one its heros, so suddenly and so sadly, in action.
More than anyone, Mike created the sport of unsupported ultra-endurance bike racing. In doing so, he made long-distance cycling exciting and got a younger, faster crowd hooked on it. Building on the achievements and ideas of others, such as Mark Beaumont and Nathan Jones, Mike, with his Transcontinental Race, created something full of fantasy and adventure which could fit into two weeks’ holiday. He made the wild, exotic and exciting accessible, not exactly to the masses, but to those of us, less extraordinary than him, who were magnetically drawn to it.
He focused on keeping it open and non-elitist. He could easily…
Start: 9.30 a.m. Meet: Moulton Co-op, Stocks Hill, Moulton, NN3 7TB. Distance: 51 miles Refreshments: Medbourne (25 miles) Pace: A steady average of 13 mp.h.
Our route starts at Moulton and heads out to Holcot, Old and Harrington and then north to the A6. After a few hundred yards along the A6 we turn off to Dingley and on up to Slawston and Hallaton. There we turn south for Medbourne and the Nevill Arms Café – a café popular with Leicester cyclists – for brunch (25m).
We return via Cottingham, the Triangular Lodge at Rushton, and then through Rothwell, Broughton and Walgrave back to Moulton.
Questions? Contact Brian on 01604 622073 (07843 505213 on the day)
Start: 9.30 a.m. Meeting point: Brampton Valley Way (BVW)/A5199 crossing near The Windhover, NN6 8AA. There is a BVW car park just up Brampton Lane. Distance: 40 miles (brisk), 35 miles (moderate). Refreshments: Salcey Forest Café
This circuit of Northampton skirts/circles the Borough boundary keeping the Express Lift Tower as our “hub” all morning – taking in Boughton, Moulton, Overstone, the Houghtons and Salcey Forest for an early brunch. Then we complete the circuit through Quinton, Blisworth, Milton Malsor, Rothersthorpe, Kislingbury and return to BVW.
Brisk ride led by Phil L; moderate ride led by Brian.