Rowan went on this ride, led by Iain D. She writes:
Four of us met up at the entrance to the Brampton Valley Way (BVW), near the Windhover pub on Saturday afternoon for what was the last of our summertime rides.
Luckily for us, the sun came out and we enjoyed some very mild, if a little windy, weather as Iain D. led Milton, Dave U. and myself northwards up the BVW path, over loose chippings and through some puddles (eek!) until we hit a beautifully smooth surfaced (in comparison) road towards Creaton village and up the rather steep but scenic hill!
Our ride was rather challenging in terms of ups and downs; certainly it was for me after having a few weeks off from suffering a twisted neck muscle but as we got into the swing of it I would say we might have re-titled our ride “brisk”.
We rode through Creaton, Hollowell, Ravensthorpe, East Haddon and lastly along the Holdenby road towards our refreshment stop, Café Monde, Church Brampton. We went “up hill and down dale” for the whole ride, but I seemed to go up a few gears on the final stretch towards my waiting coffee! Milton left us at this point to go and walk his dog ….
The remaining three of us were very pleased to meet up at our tea stop with John Alcock , who had cycled over from his home in Duston to be with us. Thanks to John we had a great conversation ranging from our shared re-collections of Chesterfield and Worksop to the future of our CTC groups.
Thanks to Iain D for organising this ride and for everyone else’s company.
Saturday morning, six of us gathered in the rapidly-clearing mist in East Hunsbury for this brisk ride out to Whilton Locks. Two Brians and two Phils – an usual mix for our group.
PhilJ had obviously been doing his homework because once clear of Banbury Lane, I don’t think we hit an actual road again until we were nearing Harlestone Firs. Cycle path all the way (in fact, I wouldn’t be surprised if part of that route gets used for a leisure ride next year, it was so pleasant).
While the mist had cleared at ground level, the cloud base was still below the top of the lift tower as we left town, when it also started raining, albeit only gently. It did seem to keep the traffic at bay on the Roman road out to Whilton though; it was very quiet for a Saturday.After meeting up with John Cutler at Whilton, the return leg promised to be a little easier on the navigation. It proved to be quite hard on tyres, however, one Phil complaining of a flat at the top the hill out of Whilton, the other Phil about 10 yards later.
Top tip of the day: to avoid p*nct*res, don’t be called Phil.
(One of those p*nct*res later turned out to be the result of a broken spoke so not the fault of the rain washing grit into the road).
The Roman road passed, as you might expect, a little quicker on the way back, being downhill and everything, although one of us did nearly come a cropper on the way through Harpole when a kindly motorist flung their door open without checking for traffic. (If you were that motorist, it pays to check… If you missed a group of highly-visible cyclists (and we were), you’d easily have missed a car and now be looking for your driver’s door somewhere down the road …). Fortunately, we were keeping our distance.
Without further incident, we returned from whence we came via the newly-christened “Mount Tesco”*, also known as “the Towcester Road”, completing nearly 30 miles of reasonably brisk riding.
Next time, Phil’s promised to take us to Draycote Water. I’m looking forward to that now.
* NB: Other retailer-based naming conventions are available.
Brian (our secretary) stepped into the breach to lead this ride and has followed it up with the day’s experiences. In his own words:
This was Milton’s special hilly ride to the rural centre Wistow, home of the Maize Maze, on the outskirts of Leicester. We were not getting lost there, however, as we had John navigating beyond Guilsborough into Leicestershire, territory familiar to him.
As 7 riders left Moulton on a chilly but sunny morning, Milton was tucking into a late cooked breakfast contemplating when he could get back on his bike! We, though, were heading North literally into the hills of Brixworth, Spratton and on to Guilsborough. By Naseby, riders were stripping off winter tops as the sun warmed the day. By this time 2 riders had pealed off making for home leaving just 5 to make it to lunch, although not before we had encountered one of the “mean hills” we had been warned of.
Arriving at noon we sat out in the sunshine enjoying the food and company at the rural centre which was not as busy as expected, but with plenty of other cyclists. Eventually with some reluctance we tore ourselves from the sunny spot and headed back, contemplating the next “mean hill” at Gumley. Having gained height the views were great and the roads especially quiet as we headed for Saddington.
We were looking forward to a tea stop at the Old Vicarage in Naseby when Eleanor’s chain dropped on the road like a streak of oil. We had 3 chain tools and a spare link between us and Eleanor was soon on the road again but not before she had called out her chief mechanic with the car to meet us for tea.
The Old Vicarage did not disappoint with the tea and cakes and even a bacon butty for some as we again sat out in the garden. Well refreshed we now were down to 3 riders and it was nearly all downhill to Moulton. (well Brixworth hill ? ,we hardly noticed after Gumley) with the temperature just starting to cool as the sun dropped.
Good route, good weather and good company what more can you want from a ride !
Thanks to Milton for the route maps and for laying on perhaps the last of the Summer weather.