Harrogate Cycling for Pleasure
Harrogate's cycling club for people who
don't wear lycra! (and some who do)
Sunday, July 30, 2017

Wheel EasyRide Report 585

Medium Plus Ride Medium Section

I was looking forward to an easy day, gently following one of the Webbers, only to have greatness thrust upon me once again, when Monica delegated a "faster" section for me to lead.

Seven of us rattled off from Ripley up the hill and it was only when I got to the end of the road leading to Fountains that I discovered taht I had lost Maris. So sorry Maris if we were a litte too fast for you; the fitter members of our little team were pushing along at a pretty good pace and I was unable to hold them back.

I do hope that you had an enjoyable ride.

We seemed to reach Masham quite quickly and the faster group were only half way through their meal, leaving a bit of a seat shortage outside.

Once sustenance had been taken on board, we were off again, and although there had been a discussion outlining the route, we then managed to lose Dave Wilson who powered off the front and disappeared into the blue yonder.

My reputation of trying not to lose people was going to be in tatters at this rate; might lose the whole team if I wasn't careful.

Luckily, we caught up with him in Littlethorpe and so on home. 

I did persuade the team to show me the route through the Mountgarret Estate by way of a diversion, as I had never been through there, and what a pleasure it was on a dry sunny afternoon.

58 very happy miles at quite q smart pace; thanks to Paul, Steve, Mick, Rob, and Dave Wilson, who judging by his pace today, is better.         Dave S.

Medium Plus Fast Section

The possibility of showers didn’t seem to have dampened enthusiasm for the medium plus ride this morning and the more sprightly group set off from Hornbeam with eleven riders. The pace was brisk, as usual, and on arriving at Ripley we were informed that Steve had stopped on the Greenway with a puncture. He’d said he was intending to return home and, thinking that he could, if he wanted, join up with the less sprightly group behind, we forged onwards up Scurrah Bank and beyond. At Kirby Malzeard, Richard left us early to perform “dog duty” and the ride leader managed to prevail over a group of over-keen rebels who wanted to add more hills by deviating off the official route!

After a good downhill blast through Ilton down to Masham, we received prompt and efficient service at Jonny Baghdad’s and were joined at our outside table by a likeable old cycling hand from Richmond (not the” limp-wristed lot” on the Thames) and now West Burton. He seemed to have overcome pretty well every challenge that cycling has to offer, save winning the Tour de France, and had some good old Yorkshire values.

Having dropped another rider who was visiting his daughter in Masham, we headed on towards Ripon. After wisely choosing to avoid a confrontation with a large combine harvester, we were soon cruising along the flat roads around Wath.  Closer to home there was an attempt to set off the 30mph warning sign outside Bishop Monkton, but our sprinter, D’arcy, was not on his best form, and his domestiques lacked coordination, so that challenge remains for another day.

It was an enjoyable ride with better weather than might have been expected.  54 miles, 3000ft climbed and an average speed of over 14mph according to Paul’s Garmin.





Medium Plus Sensible Lot

After the fast boys had departed Hornbeam a decision was made to cycle to Ripley and regroup there. Dave Siswick responded gallantly to my request to lead some faster paced riders and so we split into  2 comfortable groups.

In view of the weather forecast predicting rain early afternoon, we decided to head straight for Masham and  to the ever efficient Jonny Bagdad's cafe.  Luckily Dave's group were just vacating their table and we all enjoyed our lunch outside. The sun came out while we were there and continued to shine as we cycled towards Ripon via West Tanfield and Wath. James and Tim said goodbye at Bishop Monkton to head for Knaresborough, and the rest of the group returned home via Markington and the Greenway. The rain had only made a very brief appearance and, on saying farewell, all agreed that it had been an enjoyable day out.      Monica

Medium Ride

Now, this is an observation, not a complaint. Whoever is in charge of the Wheel Easy measuring stick needs to buy a new one. This ride was billed as 34 miles flat. In fact, according to my infallible Strava, it was 40.81 miles and 628 metres of climbing. So maybe you should buy a new altimeter as well. And that was taking the short route back from Wetherby avoiding Little Ribston!

It was a delightful ride that you had planned for us. I was a last minute addition to the team of leaders
We started well with 14 cheery riders who were asked to split into 2 even groups. As we were on a ride where accuracy was not important, they split nicely into 9 and 5. Once we sorted that out at Burn Bridge, everything went well. 
We stuck fairly well to our groups with some joining and some leaving but all good fun.
The finishing group included Helen, me (broken Steve), half broken Mike (just recovering from an injury), Zoe who said she was slow up hills but always managed to get to the top first, Richard on his first ( definitely not his last) Wheel Easy ride and Brian on his mountain bike (whose tyres sounded like a car when he passed you).
We followed the route as described - through Wetherby to Bramham and then a lovely little add-on through Thorner and back to Bramham. The other group decide not to do this bit - they missed out.
The coffee/ lunch stop was at the Thorpe Arch Cafe and Bistro where we briefly saw the other group. The speed and quality of the food deserves a medal.
Then back along various cycle tracks to Spofforth and back to Hornbeam
I said we would get home before the rain came and we did.
That’s all from me. See you in a few months and enjoy the rides.   Steve W.
Medium Slow Ride
Arrived at Hornbeam wondering who would turn up for a poddle, apart from Jen just back from a complete circuit of France and sporting a wonderful cyclist's tan.  Dennis and Psychologist Sue also opted to join us and we decided to do the Bramham route, with the usual proviso that Dennis will leave early for his Yorkshires.   Horrified to find that Walton Head Lane, previously a favourite little route, had been covered with gravel for no apparent reason other than to deter cyclists.  The random heaps of gravel in the middle of the road were particularly hair raising and we stopped at a scenic point outside Kirkby Overblow to draw breath, where we were joined by Brownie Gill, out on her new sparkly bike.  We continued tentatively to Wetherby, occasionally passing groups of cyclists all shouting "Gravel!"  
Dennis and Sue peeled off to go home and Jen, Gill and I carried on towards Boston Spa.  The heavens opened as we started along the Wetherby bike path, but we managed to avoid the worst of it under cover of the greenery.  At Boston Spa we met the Wanderers, who were doing almost the same route only the other way round. On to Bramham and the A1 bike path.  Back to the Shambles in Wetherby for coffee and buns, then return to Knareborough via Little Ribston and Kirk Deighton.  This road provided the usual examples of kamikaze driving, but luckily no-one was hurt.  Up Knaresborough hill and home via Boggs Lane.  Lovely ride (apart from the gravel), great chat.  About 33 mi according to Mrs A.  I must get a new odometer. Monica S
All rides are at your own risk. Please ensure that you have your own third party insurance (check your house insurance) and consider Cycling UK membership.