Ride Report – Saturday 21st November

Phil L led this ride and writes:

I must admit, looking out of the window early this morning with the wind blowing hard and sleeting buckets, it didn’t look promising for a brisk ride. But, “When the going gets tough, the tough etc.,etc., …. !”

So four of us turned out and “Dares yuh!”  And, amazingly, had a good ride ‘cos by mid morning the sun was out and, whisked along by a fierce following wind, we shot to Olney pretty quickly.  But then WHEN we turned into the wind….ouch!  That was a hard slog to Castle Ashby and coffee stop.

But hey, we got 35 pretty brisk miles in and enjoyed it!

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Ride Report – Sunday 15th November

Philip G led this ride and writes:

Last Sunday five riders, undeterred by a grim forecast, came out to test themselves against Storm Abigail’s gusty southwesterlies: Ian M, Tim, Phil J, Brian and me.

Heading out into the wind was quite a struggle. A slight error led us to discover the lovely road from Moreton Pinkney to Eydon. Finally we reached Harley’s Café, meeting George who was just leaving.

The stretch to Towcester was a total contrast: gliding along with the wind behind us through glorious villages in crisp sunshine. Our goal was Towcester Mill Brewery, where we washed our own sandwiches down with the excellent house brews. A highly recommended stop for any beer lover.

The wind then more or less blew us home to complete a very enjoyable 45-mile ride, whatever the forecast said!

Ride report – Thirty miles brisk – Saturday 7th November

Milton led this ride and writes:

Two of us made it to the Moulton start on Saturday for a 30-mile brisk ride to Kelmarsh via Ravensthorpe and back via Old.  It was already raining steadily as we set off and would continue to do so, with a few moments of even heavier rain, until we reached coffee stop at the Buddhist Centre.

As we left for the return there was, I feel sure, a moment of almost dry before the rain began to pelt down again.  It seemed very wet and very windy, but, in fact, we had been lucky.  From Walgrave until home the rain showed us what it really could do and came down in Biblical proportions.  Barely able to see 10 feet in front of us because of water, we were hardly able on occasions to drive the bikes forward because of the wind.

And yet I wondered where everybody was! What could have kept them away?

James and I had a great time which we hope not to experience again for many a long year.

Ride Report – Sunday 1st November

Phil J went on this ride, led by Ian M, and writes:

A colourful plethora of cyclists gathered at the Canoe Centre on this unusually warm and sunny start to November for the ride to Ringstead.  They included new boys Vic and James, as well as Northants visitor Jeanette. Ten of us set off on the busy A428 before the welcoming turn to Little Houghton and the less than welcoming climb into it. At that point our leader Ian advised that we should split into two groups of five to avoid any issues with cars and we duly obliged.

The downhill at Cogenhoe shortly afterwards provided an early blast of speed for the two groups and we blazed down gratefully giving us plenty of momentum towards Grendon before an early check on numbers at the roadside.  The route down to Bozeat was swift and the ride paused there briefly for a simple mechanical on Jeanette’s bike. And, after a quick check of one or two maps, we were on our way again.

The weather was simply fantastic as we pressed on towards Podington, all of us amazed at how lucky we were to be riding in such glorious sunshine at this time of the year. Hinwick Hall looked majestic as we skirted around it.  The road ramped up a little towards Wymington and the terrain opened up at the same time to reveal wonderful scenery as far as the eye could see.  Riders changed groups, layers came off but all made good time regardless.

Towards Chelveston and beyond, the traffic levels increased meaning more splitting of the large group to accommodate the drivers going our way.  Without incident we navigated our way out of the urban sprawl that is Raunds and onto quieter roads with the mill on the horizon.

Our chair, Iain D, was already soaking up the sun in a vibrant location overlooking the marina and we duly joined him.  Two tables were required for our thirsty peleton.  The service was great and we all enjoyed our time there before heading back home.

Out of the mill a short sharp rise was waiting with hardly anybody in the right gear!  Cue frantic grinding of gears to get us up and over.  The reward at the summit was another reminder of the great weather and the spectacular colours of autumn.

Great Addington was the first village en route before meandering our way round to Cranford and eventually over the A14 as we made our way towards the streets of Burton Latimer and the Weetabix plant nearby.  Isham and Orlingbury passed quickly before the long and winding road towards Sywell beckoned.  Once again keeping your distance from the riders up ahead was the order of the day and this continued through Overstone as well.

At Moulton Co-op some the group said their goodbyes with it seemed just three of us heading for the finish.  We passed busy parks, residential areas and cyclepaths but we arrived at the Canoe Centre without incident before three more riders joined us having taken a slightly different route back.

A quite tactical ride for everyone today due to the numbers but a better ride at this time of year would be difficult to find!

Stunning scenery and wonderful weather with a great cafe stop to boot!

Thanks to Ian M for the ride!