“Hannah Barnes’ Favourite Ride” – Sunday 2nd March

Brian, our Secretary, is leading this ride and writes:

This ride was inspired by an article in Cycling Weekly in July 2013 which described the favourite training route of national rider Hannah Barnes who lives in Towcester and starts/finishes her route there. Hannah does her 40 mile route in about 2 hours but we will probably take a little longer and not just because we start in Northampton!

We’ll start from Overslade Close, East Hunsbury, NN4 0RZ (behind the Tesco Superstore) at 9.30 a.m. prompt.

Route: Blisworth, Shutlanger, short stretch of A5 then across to Silverstone.  Down past Stowe School and on to Chackmore and the Stowe National Trust property and through the Corinthian Arch for coffee.

On then to Biddlestone, Helmdon, Sulgrave, Thorpe Mandeville, and across to Canons Ashby for lunch at the NT property (sandwiches and baked potatoes are available).  It is a short ride back via Litchborough, Greens Norton and Tiffield to Northampton.  That makes for 54 miles.  It’s hilly in parts but the roads are mainly very quiet.

We will return mid-afternoon. (If you want to join us for just the morning, you could return to Northampton from Stowe.)

Brian Tunbridge 01604 622073 (07722 055149 on the day)

You can see the route here on RideWithGPS.

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Ride Report – Saturday 22nd February

Phil L led this ride to Newport Pagnell and writes:

The six of us who turned out for today’s ride, stood blinking for a while in a strange new light, trying to figure out what was different about the day.  Ah yes!  It wasn’t raining and that ethereal light was sunshine!

It was good to welcome new rider Wojter from Poland who proved to be a fit addition to our group as we made brisk progress out via Ashton and Castlethorpe to Newport Pagnell for coffee plus.  I say that because the owner of the cafe we dropped into wasn’t keen for “Coffees only” orders which “forced” us pretty willingly to go for bacon butties etc.

The return route via NR6 and Salcey made it just about 40 miles and in time for the rugby!

Ride to Newport Pagnell – Saturday 22nd February

Phil L is leading this ride and writes:

We’ll start at 9.30 a.m. at Hunsbury (Overslade Close, East Hunsbury, NN4 0RZ) for a ride of approximately 38 miles at a brisk pace (say 14 mph).

The route takes us out via Blisworth, Ashton and Castlethorpe to Newport Pagnell for brunch.  We’ll return via Hanslope and NCR 6.

This is slightly shorter than the route originally in the programme due to the recent flooding but allows us to stop for coffee and cake/snacks in Newport Pagnell instead of at Willen Lake.

Phil is on 07867 3889592.

Ride Report – Sunday 16th February

David went on Bill’s ride to Towcester and writes as follows.  He also took the pictures!

Bill led the annual ride to the A5 Rangers’ Cycle Jumble Sale at their clubhouse in Towcester.  This year we had a cold start but it was sunny through out the day: a respite from the record-breaking daily rainfall and gale-force winds we have had on the last few rides.

Outside

Outside

Inside

Inside

The club served tea and cake and the stalls had many vintage bicycle parts to buy.  Some of us bought super sized pannier racks and struggled to put them in our pannier bags!  I purchased a tool wallet, containing many useful tools, which will be easier to travel with. Max got large handlebars to enable him to breathe better whilst cycling.

One of the stalls

One of the stalls

An interesting table top

An interesting table top

Three of us returned back together to Northampton, passing a buzzard sitting on a hedge watching a earthy field for prey.  It promptly flew away as we passed by!

Ride to Towcester – Sunday 16th February

Iain D, our Rides Secretary, writes:

We’ve got off relatively lightly with the weather of late, in comparison with other parts of the country, but it’s not exactly been lovely for cycling this week. And we scheduled a ride to Towcester for the A5 Rangers cycle parts, extras and “jumble” sale this Sunday …
Well, I’m pleased to say that the forecast is looking pretty good for the day itself and Bill still intends to lead this ride. Here’s what he has to say:
The ride is just a straight out and return – approx 25-30 miles.
 
There is the usual tea and cake at the A5 Rangers club house plus attempts to pick up stuff from the jumble sale etc.
 
I will be there as per normal even if weather inclement.
 
It’s usually a good opportunity to stock up on consumables for the year as well – and you can stay as long or as short as you like in Towcester, if you’re happy to make your own way back.
One other note from Bill:
leave 9.30 a.m. … sharp
See you Sunday, 9.30 a.m. (sharp!), Overslade Close, East Hunsbury, NN4 0RZ.
Bill is on 07736 600858

Ride Report – Saturday 8th February

Brian, our Secretary, led this brisk morning ride.  Words by Brian; photos by David.

Given that it has been very wet this year, it was not surprising that the ride this Saturday morning became a tour of the floods in the Nene and Great Ouse valleys.

We had 6 riders out today. We met at the Canoe Centre which was surrounded by water. However, none of the roads were flooded and we set off at 9.30 a.m. for the higher ground of Castle Ashby and then down again to Olney. We were now into the Great Ouse valley and soon alongside fields covered in water. The bridge over the river at Turvey was just above the water level. Shortly after we stopped for a pleasant coffee and cake at the Emmaus Village Bistro in Carlton.

Café at Emmaeus Village

Café at Emmaus Village

It was quite warm in the sun although the wind was very strong. Luckily the general direction of the ride was cross wind but we had met a few short stretches of strong head wind en-route.Between Carlton and Harrold we crossed the Great Ouse again, only this time the road was well under water. Fortunately there is a raised footpath about 4ft above the road for about 100 yards and we crossed it as if on a major bridge.

Flooded road by River Ouse

Flooded road by River Ouse

It was quite warm in the sun although the wind was very strong. Luckily the general direction of the ride was cross wind but we had met a few short stretches of strong head wind en-route. Between Carlton and Harrold we crossed the Great Ouse again, only this time the road was well under water. Fortunately there is a raised footpath about 4ft above the road for about 100yds and we crossed it as if on a major bridge.

The water around us was being whipped up into choppy waves by the strong wind. Luckily it was a tail wind and we made good time to Bozeat and then back to Billing by 1.00 p.m. where we split up to get home. Given the weather forcast earlier in the week, I was pleasantly surprised the we made the ride in the dry, with plenty of sun, if a little windy!

Route here on RideWithGPS.

Brisk morning ride – “The Harrold Loop” – Saturday 8th February

Brian, our Secretary, is leading this ride and writes:

We start at the Canoe Centre (Nene Whitewater Centre, Bedford Road, NN4 7AA) at 9.30 a.m. prompt for a short and fast ride of  34 miles  return by 13.00

Route:  Canoe Centre  – Cogenhoe – Castle Ashby – Yardley Hastings – Olney – Cold Brayfield – Turvey – Carlton – Harrold – Bozeat – Grendon – Canoe Centre

We will stop for a quick coffee at the Emmaus Village Bistro in Carlton (MK43 7LQ).

The route includes two short stretches of the A428; otherwise it is on reasonably quiet B roads.

More information from Brian on 01604 622073  (or  07722 055149 on the day)

Hope to see your there.