Harrogate Cycling for Pleasure
Harrogate's cycling club for people who
don't wear lycra! (and some who do)
Sunday, May 6, 2018

Wheel Easy Ride Report 622

Short Ride

Ten set off and an eleventh joined us for the swoop down the Showground hill, thence to regroup at Low Bridge. It was probably the best day for cycling so far this year, but the promised gentle pace through Farnham to Arkendale meant that there was no danger of dehydration.  Then off to try to cross the A59 after Flaxby.  After waiting two hours, a car stopped to let us across and so on to Goldsborough and the ideal caff stop at Waterside (as suggested by Dennis. Ta.).
Before she left us, back marker Sue T (ta), in her additional capacity as Overtaking Gap Monitor reported an OG rating of 6/10.  So, more work needed there, then.
With the agreement of everyone, and particularly for new bloke, Joe, we added a few more miles taking in the Beryl Burton thus covering 23 miles today. Paul B



Medium Ride

Well today, summer seemed to have arrived without winter having first turned into spring. So we set off for the hills in balmy warmth. It seemed that the weather had inspired lots of others to get out and the Greenway was busy, even at 10am. 

We had an uneventful climb up through Hollybank Woods then on to Birstwith and Darley where the climbing started in earnest. After a introductory leg-wobbler up Sheepcoat Lane, we turned down to Thornthwaite where the dubious delights of My Love Lane awaited.

They say when rock climbing to never look down. Well, My Love Lane is a road one should never look up as the sight will discourage! So we grimly looked at the tarmac and ground our way to the top. Nobody pushed!

So with some relief, we reached Duck Lane and turned left back past Menwith Hill. Here we saw a load of Medium-Plus riders off on their day trip to see some men on bicycles. We modified the route slightly to go straight down to Hampsthwaite and provisions at Sophie’s. Then back through Killinghall and the Greenway.

A lovely ride on a lovely day. 29 miles. Al D



Medium-plus Ride

A glorious day for the planned ride to view the last stage of the Tour de Yorkshire. A later start of 10.30 was planned and, by this time, twenty riders had assembled at Hornbeam. Mike Wills kindly agreed to lead a group and then my group of ten set off shortly behind them. Good progress was made to Pateley Bridge via the Little Almscliffe, the Naval Base, Braithwaite Lane and Yorke's Folly. 

We were all surprised to see what seemed like hundreds of cyclists coming down Duck Street in a continuous line – part of what turned out to be the Tour de Yorkshire Sportif. Timings were all on schedule at Teacups and we were able to sit outside and enjoy a relaxed and sociable lunch in bright sunshine. The main street in Pateley Bridge was buzzing with the anticipation of the Tour passing through.

We took the steep road to Wath with a few managing to cycle all the way up while most of us walked the first part, just in order to enjoy the fabulous views. A turn left at the top and we soon arrived at our chosen viewing point. The atmosphere was already set by some enthusiastic spectators who had set themselves up with chairs, flags and banners. Several fun photos were taken holding Sue Couture's Yorkshire banner and then we took to our vantage points. The atmosphere and excitement built up as countless motorcycles and cars with no obvious purpose passed through and then the helicopter heralded the first rider to arrive, five minutes ahead of the rest. 

Soon after that the peloton passed and we all marvelled at their speed climbing the hill we were on. All too soon they had gone and we started our journey home splintering into different smaller groups. After the climb up to Brimham, the descent to Ripley was very welcome. Before long we were at the end of the Greenway saying goodbye, all agreeing it had been a brilliant day out.

About 40 miles. Monica W




The Medium-plus faster group comprised just two riders, Mike Inglis and me. All went according to plan until Blubberhouses where we had to abandon the first section of the West End route due to the human tide of the TdY Sportif which was emerging from West End Lane in what was definitely a one way system. 

We managed to get back on track by joining the Sportif briefly at Stone House to cross the Thruscross dam and turning right up the valley. Lunch at Teacups was a long and leisurely affair in order to avoid waiting too long in the sun at the viewing point. Wath Hill was even more gruelling than I remembered. As usual with cycling spectating, the wait was probably more thrilling than the event itself. No one managed to spot Cav, but there was much debate about where he was most likely to crash out.

Mercifully, the way back was mainly downhill and were back in Harrogate by 5, glowing from hard exercise and sunshine. David W




Long Ride

Well, the day didn't start we'll because I left my shoes at home and only realised when I was halfway to Harrogate - cue a rapid return home! Then Mr Garmin wouldn't turn on - it's got a lot of problems and I think it's going to the great GPS home in the sky. Or it may be going down below because it's given that much grief recently....

Anyway, the ride went well. We made good time to Masham for JB's rapid cafe service. Then on to Coverham and up to Park Rash. Quite a hard climb in the heat. We had a good view as the TdY riders reached the top of the climb, with Cav not looking best pleased off the back of the peleton, and Thursday's winner Harry Tanfield way off the back. Harry was beaming as he pushed another rider up the hill, and he in turn was being pushed by a spectator - good fun all round. The leader was on his own at four minutes.

After all the entertainment, we went down PR to Kettlewell, on to Grassington for a refuel, and then went up to Stump Cross.  A few tired legs were creeping in by now but mine were revived by the call of a cuckoo not too far off the road. Nice! 

So, 78 miles, a lot of climb, a lot of sun, and a good day out. John H.





Self-Led Ride

Although seven of us were leaderless we were not rudderless as we set off for York via Beningborough Hall.  The weather was ideal, no wind, warm sunshine and dry roads.  We made good time to Beningborough but gave the Farm café a miss in favour of Cycle Heaven in York.  On such a glorious day we were met with nearly a constant stream of cyclists leaving York.  After watching the TdY depart from Halifax on the big TV screen it was time for us to depart from York.  Initially we set quite a quick pace, despite a headwind, but this gradually reduced as the temperature increased.  Back to Harrogate in time to go and see the TdY at Blubberhouses.  PCJ




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.