Ride report – Saturday 23rd February

Milton led this ride and writes:

We 14 riders set out from Moulton on a chilly, misty Winter’s morning and arrived in Mawsley two hours later on a warm Summer’s afternoon. No individual weather event can ever be identified as an example of global warming of course …. except this one!
A pretty lumpy ride largely through the North and West of the county challenged us all, but as the weather improved there was certainty that Spring was in the air. Birds were singing and the hedgerows seemed to be in full bud, and in those circumstances, no hill is topped without a smile on the face.
The ‘Brisks’ were first to the café on this occasion and had bought in a round of coffees and cakes for the ‘Moderates’ as they always do in such circumstances, but, unfortunately the ‘Moderates’ took a little while to arrive and by the time they did, all had been scoffed. The Brisks should probably have been shame-faced but were, in fact, triumphant.
Lovely to welcome Odette and Kim to, respectively, their 1st and 2nd rides with us, and to be accompanied by James, in recovery from his shoulder injury, (in as far as James ever accompanies anyone – he flew ahead of us all until he reached his departure point at Brixworth) for the first few miles.


Ride to Mawsley – Saturday 23rd February

Milton is leading this ride and writes:

Start time: 9.30 a.m.
Meeting point: Moulton Co-op, Stocks Hill, Moulton, NN3 7TB
Distance: Brisk 39 miles / Moderate 34 miles
Refreshment stop: Mawsley café, Mawsley
Pace: Brisk 14+mph / Moderate about 12mph
Time Expected Back: By 2pm latest

A nice rural ride out this Saturday takes us from Moulton up to Brixworth on to Spratton and Thornby before turning East towards Haselbech and Harrington. Then it’s across the A14, (Oh, you’ll manage, it’s only two giant roundabouts!) to Orton then Loddington and Broughton and to our stop at Mawsley cafe.

The Moderate group avoids the horrors of the double roundabout across the A14 as well as avoiding Orton, Loddington and Broughton and goes directly to Mawsley from Harrington. The café comes after 30 miles of lumpy territory for the Brisk group and 25 for the Moderate group so you will need both drinks and some food to get you there.

Both groups will meet up at the café at exactly the same time ( … not if I’m leading the Brisks they won’t!) and, ideally we should enjoy a gently paced nine mile trip home as one peloton. I expect to be back at Moulton by 1.30 ish maybe 2, but no later.

http://ridewithgps.com/routes/29029433 …… Moderate ride
http://ridewithgps.com/routes/29029412 …… Brisk ride

We look forward to welcoming all riders, and especially any new riders who may wish to join the ride. For any further questions, please feel free to contact Milton on 01604 416315

Circuit of Rutland Water – Sunday 17th February

Phil Letts is leading this ride and writes:


Start time: 9.30 a.m.
Meeting point: Brampton Valley Way, Welford Crossing, NN6 8AA
Distance: 25 miles off road circuit of Rutland Water
Refreshment stop: Various coffee stops


Members wishing to attend this ride/circuit of Rutland Water will need access to bike carrying transport to/from Rutland Water, a journey which takes about 50mins.
I’m proposing to meet at the car park opposite the Windhover/BVW at 9.30am then drive in convoy through to Uppingham and the start point at Manton where there is limited free parking (to avoid the £6 fees at Normanton!)
The off road ride surface is a mixture of tarmac, roughish gravel and cobbles so either an MTB or Gravel bike is required, definitely not a road bike.
It would be useful to know who intends to do this ride.
I can offer bike rack space for one or two more.
I’m on 07867388592

Ride to Upper Stowe – Saturday 9th February

Tim is leading these rides and writes:

Start time: 9.30 a.m.
Meeting point: Overslade Close, East Hunsbury, NN4 0RZ
Distance: 29 miles for the Moderate ride, 37 miles for the Brisk ride
Refreshment stop: The Barn Café Restaurant, Upper Stowe
Pace: Moderate (11 – 12 mph), Brisk (14+ mph)
Time expected back: 1.30 p.m.

We have a pair of rides with a shared tea stop this Saturday (9th February).
Both rides head out from East Hunsbury through Rothersthorpe, Gayton Marina & Tiffield before crossing the A5 at Fosters Booth.

They then continue along Banbury Lane before diverging at the Blakesley / Maidford cross roads. From here the Moderate group heads north via Maidford & Farthingstone and then up the hill to the southern edge of Everdon Stubbs before arriving for refreshments at the Old Dairy Farm in Upper Stowe.

Meanwhile the Brisk group take a longer loop via Adstone, Preston Capes & Everdon before climbing the somewhat steeper hill up through Everdon Stubbs where they join the Moderate route to Upper Stowe.

Suitably refreshed, both groups follow the same route home to East Hunsbury via Nether Heyford, Bugbrooke & Rothersthorpe.

The proposed routes can be viewed (and downloaded as gpx files) from the CTC Northampton account on RideWithGPS:

https://ridewithgps.com/routes/29044604 (Moderate route)

https://ridewithgps.com/routes/29044628 (Brisk route)

Tim will be leading the Moderate ride, but the Brisk ride will be self led (so please ensure you download the route to your bike computer if you are planning on attending the Brisk ride).

Any questions please contact Tim on 07749 477231.

Ride report – Sunday 3rd February

Peter Bayles went on this ride and writes:

Ten riders set off from Brampton Valley Way on Sunday morning for a moderate ride in wonderful winter sunshine, although the temperature started off at a bracing -4 degrees.

Phil’s route (shown below) was perfect for the conditions though, being mostly off-road on smaller tracks and pathways that circled Northampton. This meant that any ice that we encountered was not much of an issue, in fact the grip was improved on some stretches where the ground was frozen and rough.



All riders came well prepared with suitable bikes and warm clothing. Brian was sporting his usual antique Proflex full suspension bike, and James entertained us with his automatic saddle that moved up or down at the touch of a button – just the job for slippy conditions.

We rode via Boughton and Moulton Park to the café stop at Billing Aquadrome, a pleasant and cost effective venue. John, however, shot off ahead, missing the turn for the café and somehow ending up at Billing Garden Centre before realising what had happened and joining the group again after 15 minutes.

As is often the case, Hartley’s healthy eating regime meant that he immediately ordered a bacon butty, and what a bacon butty it was; thick bread and loads of bacon at a bargain price. Stupidly, Hartley decided to visit the little boy’s room before he started eating which, predictably, gave Viki the chance to tuck in and devour half of his breakfast before he returned.

We were just setting off when Phil, our bold and fearless ride leader, discovered that his front tyre had a slow puncture. It was so cold that Phil really wasn’t keen on getting his hands numbed by changing the tube, so opted instead to keep the tyre topped up by stopping every 30 minutes or so.

The return route went through Brackmills and up the steep footpath to Hardingstone. Half way up the hill, there is always a patch of sheet ice when it’s cold enough, which is difficult for both pedestrians and cyclists. Our bold and fearless leader, followed closely by Chris and James, stormed up the hill and over the ice, finding grip and looking impressive. John, however, was not so lucky and preceded to do the classic sideways fall with shoes still clipped into his pedals, impressively managing to soften the impact by falling onto the verge. The rest of the group immediately dismounted and walked up!

If anything good came from John’s acrobatic display, it was that his previously idolised bike was no longer perfect, and we had to stop at the top of the hill to re-align his saddle. But we’re still jealous of it John.

A few miles from home, Phil finally decided to change his tube and discovered that Schwalbe tyres on a Boardman gravel bike clincher wheel are tight and next to impossible to remove at the side of the road in the cold. Eventually Phil, with a little help and muscle from fellow riders, managed to get the tyre seated again and started to re-inflate it.

Perhaps it was the cold or perhaps the less than impressive pump, but whatever the reason, Phil only managed to half inflate the tyre and limped carefully home, not quite beaten by the Boardman, but severely slapped.

A great ride, so many thanks to Phil for organising and the other riders who joined.