Ride report: Saturday 26th August

James went on this ride, led by Milton, and writes:

Twelve of us departed from Moulton under conditions very reflective of the ride organiser’s temperament: grey, sullen and slightly damp.  At the same time, his the choice of destination – the World Peace Café at the Nagarjuna Buddhist centre in Kelmarsh – typified his more positive qualities, e.g., his lifelong commitment to the enlightened one’s emphasis on equanimity and loving-kindness as the core values of daily existence.

In order to encourage more people to come out and ride, Milton – in a familiar display of thoughtfulness – had devised faster and slower route options.  The ‘proper’ brisk route followed a slightly more circuitous path to Kelmarsh – going via Orton – than did the moderate one, which was shorter by something like five miles. Of course, the division also gave some of the slightly faster and, err, more competitive riders the challenge of trying to catch up and overtake the second group before they reached Kelmarsh.  It was childish, but I did it …

As we progressed through Holcot, Hannington, Walgrave and Old, the sun started making increasingly frequent appearances and by the time the brisk set diverted off to Orton it was warming up nicely.  A couple of the quicker riders caught up with the “moderates” just outside of Harrington and sped on to bag some good seats in the café‘s serene back garden.  The remainder of the two groups all arrived within fifteen minutes or so, and it wasn’t long before we were all enjoying the high quality fayre we’ve come to associate with the caféand its delightful staff.  Some of us attempted to respect the Buddha’s emphasis on frugality by just taking green tea and a few biscuits.  Unfortunately, one rider, i.e., Giles ‘Bake Off’ Barringham, was less sensitive to this precept and keen to declare he was eating his fifth (large) piece of cake in five days.

By the time we departed the sun was in its full glory and this continued to be the case as we came back en masse via Haselbech, Cottesbrooke, Brixworth and Holcot.  Once back at Moulton it was blazingly hot and bright, both which served to top off a most enjoyable little jaunt.

As ever, sincere thanks must go to Milton for his patience and beautifully devised routing.

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Rides to Kelmarsh – Saturday 26th August

Milton is organising two rides (moderate & brisk) from Moulton Co-op and writes:

Both rides will leave from the Co-op at 9.30 heading to Holcot, Hannington, Walgrave and Old. From Old we take the lovely single track road towards Mawsley and then head towards Harrington. The moderate ride will then cross the A14 and turn left on the outskirts of Harrington and go to Kelmarsh. The brisk group will take an additional 5 mile loop that takes us east through Orton before turning west again and returning almost to the start of the loop before following the other group to Kelmarsh.

After coffee and cake at the Buddhist Centre it’s an attractive trip home via Haselbech, Cottesbrooke and Brixworth.  It’ll make a change going down the steep hill at Haselbech for once, rather than climbing it!

It’s quite a short flat ride for both groups so I hope that one or two people who might normally be nervous of their ability to stay with the riders might venture out on the moderate ride. And for the brisk ride, I’m expecting it to be fairly quick. The loop is put in as a bit of a test for us all to see if we can reach coffee at the same time, or before, the others.

We can expect to be back at Moulton by around 1pm. I hope to see you at the start.

Ride report – Saturday 23rd April

Brian, our Secretary, went on this ride led by Iain D, our chair, and writes (in poetical mood):

It was good to see ten riders assembled outside the Co-op in Moulton.  Despite the glorious sunny morning there was a distinct absence of shorts given the cool wind.  This was both St George’s Day and the 400th anniversary of Shakespeare’s birth.  As we had a Welsh ride leader, with a Scottish actor on board, the rest of the group showed great restraint in not shouting as we left Moulton:

Straining upon the start.  The game’s afoot:
Follow your spirit, and upon this charge
Cry “God for Harry, England, and Saint George!” (Henry V)

The plan was to ride to Holcot as a group and then let riders decide how to group to continue.  We easily agreed three groups: Brisk (3), Steady (3) and Moderate (4).

We had been promised some hills en route which we duly encountered.  Most were down then up as we dropped into the many river valleys around this part of Northamptonshire, with fast descents giving a bit of help on the ‘up’.  We soon navigated Hannington, Pytchley, Broughton and on to Great Cransley.  The entrance to Green Trunks Garden Centre for the café stop was well hidden down a gravel track.  Although the restaurant was being refurbished we were given a warm welcome and some “cyclist-size” mugs of tea.
Suitably refreshed we continued in our three groups to Loddington and on to Orton where we turned for home.

Up until now we had been riding into a somewhat icy, northerly wind.  But all this changed as we rode on with a tail wind, sun and blue skies.  We sailed along quiet roads (some single track) via Mawsley and Old to Brixworth, then back to Holcot across the reservoir and on to Moulton.  Given the opportunity for some short cuts, all three groups managed to meet up at Moulton within 10 minutes or so at the end.

Suitably dressed it was a great morning for a ride. Thanks to Iain for planning the route and leading the charge.